“This is an existential question for us, and our very survival as a culture and as a people is at stake”

Minister of Climate Change James Shaw has been at the COP24 conference in Poland (he is still there, having extended his stay in the hope that something might be decided). Anything agreed on will govern countries’ efforts in adhering to their commitments under the Paris Agreement.

RNZ – Climate talks: ‘The levels of concern are so different’ – Shaw

One of the sticking points is whether efforts under the Kyoto Protocol will count towards Paris. Essentially, countries can’t agree on how they’ll count their greenhouse gas emissions, or their efforts to reduce them.

Mr Shaw told reporters this morning these were technical matters negotiators had been grappling with for three years. “Frankly, they should’ve gotten past that kind of detail before all the ministers showed up for the final three days,” he said.

Broadly speaking, Mr Shaw said a big frustration for him was the differences in countries’ commitments to fighting the effects of climate change.

“On one side you’ve got countries who are saying that they want a set of rules that are quite permissive and lets them do things, because they’re worried about the potential impact on their Gross Domestic Product.

“On the other hand, you’ve got a group of countries who are saying ‘this is an existential question for us, and our very survival as a culture and as a people is at stake’.”

That’s a big statement. perhaps Shaw is right, or maybe he just believes that everyone has to change to his way of thinking and living or they are doomed. It’s a bit like a religious thing – if you don’t believe in Green heaven you will go to hell.

 

 

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23 Comments

  1. Alan Wilkinson

     /  14th December 2018

    The best and probably the only thing countries
    can do to reduce global warming is to develop technologies that are economically more efficient and reduce greenhouse gas levels or emissions. On that basis the US has probably made by far the biggest conttibution by developing fracking.

    Don’t expect the enviromental jihadists to acknowledge that though.

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  14th December 2018

      How are they “environmental jihadists”?

      Economic jihadists I could maybe picture them as, but I doubt these people intend to wreck the environment.

      Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  14th December 2018

        Muslim jhadists don’t intend to wreck Islam either, just everyone that doesn’t share or submit to their beliefs.

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  14th December 2018

          I see. Didn’t answer the question directly. Deviation. And blatant as heck. I win again. 🏆 👍

          Reply
          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  14th December 2018

            B.s. i did answer directly. The parallel with Muslim jihadists is direct, complete with their delusion about the moral supremity of their religion.

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  14th December 2018

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  14th December 2018

              Pathetic. Jihadists don’t attack their own religion as your first silly question implied. Go to bed snd wake up with more sense.

        • MaureenW

           /  14th December 2018

          Catholic priests don’t mean to destroy faith in their religion either

          Reply
    • Ray

       /  14th December 2018

      And how much carbon dioxide did this halfwit (the man who doesn’t drive a car, so as to save the planet, no he has a driver) pump into the system when he flew there business class and how much has the ever rising CO2 be stopped with all these talkfest conferences ?
      Oh that doesn’t matter, it’s us that need to change not the elites.

      Reply
  2. Trevors_elbow

     /  14th December 2018

    Existential…ffs James Shaw talks some utter consultant bs

    Reply
  3. Geoffrey Monks

     /  14th December 2018

    I read recently an observation by a chap who lead the DSIR, and who, in that capacity, had attended the first UN conference on the issue of Global Warming. He asserted that after considerable discussion, the conference concluded man’s contribution to greenhouse gas generation was in the order of 12% of total global emissions. And, that New Zealand’s share of that 12% was .03 of one millionth part. He has not changed his mind.
    Even if we were to cease burning fossil fuel of any type and revert wholly to wheel barrows, horse drawn drays and sailing scows as our means of transportation, our national impact on global warming would be impossible to measure. The impact on our way of life, would however, be of considerably more significance than the event itself. Any moderation of the emission release measures of course further reduces their value.
    I would not suggest that we do nothing. But, I do believe that we need to look carefully and undertake measures to mitigate the production of greenhouse gases only if there is a net gain. For example, what would be the cost in emissions in recycling all fossil fuel burning motor vehicles, railway engines, electricity generators and ships and replacing them with wind solar and electric power plants whilst sustaining an acceptable standard of living? How long would it take to recover that cost?

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  15th December 2018

      And, er, where does the electricity come from ? I assume that wind turbines are some sort of plastic and it must cost a fortune to move them. I had no idea how HUGE they were until I saw one being transported and holding up traffic as it crawled along.

      Reply
      • Geoffrey Monks

         /  15th December 2018

        That is a large part of the point Kitty. The emission cost of manufacturing all of the wind and solar generators, and the vehicles and batteries that use the power is ginormous. The emission cost of reducing the ic engines to be reworked into electric motors is also shuge….. so much so that perhaps a better option is to progress the search for low-emission coal-fired generation.

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  15th December 2018

          Call me a nitpicker, but the cost of the vehicles that had to crawl along and use all that extra fuel must have been huge. I hadn’t even thought of the other things, I will freely admit.

          What on earth do they cost to produce, apart from anything else ? I really had no idea of how enormous the damned things were, seeing them on television doesn’t really convey that.

          Huntly power station uses finely ground coal that is totally consumed, I think.

          Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  15th December 2018

          Trying to discover what the damned things cost to make is difficult.

          Reply
  4. PDB

     /  14th December 2018

    November 2018 the coldest for the US since 1976, fourth coldest since records began in 1889.

    Reply
  5. Geoffrey Monks

     /  15th December 2018

    Indeed it is. However, using current internal combustion power in the mining process and fossil fuels in the power generation to smelt the minerals is hugely emission expensive. Converting those two power sources to wind/solar and battery storage to do the same job, is mind bogglingly more expensive. To the extent that I do not believe it can be done.

    Reply
  1. COP24 climate talks go into overtime seeking agreement | Your NZ

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