Nick Smith lied about the cost of cutting emissions (where is the mainstream media?)
What a week huh? To many NZers horror the privatization agenda National have worked so hard to hide reared it’s ugly head as a reality, Paula Bennett punished beneficiaries by publishing all their details in the media and Nick Smith lied through his teeth over the cost of emissions. Perhaps this hasn’t caught up with our friends in the mainstream media because Paula’s unprecedented manipulation of information to destroy two beneficiaries eclipses even Nick’s outright manipulation of the facts.
NZ leads in emissions rise
New Zealand's fossil-fuel emissions have soared by 72 per cent since 1990, the biggest jump in the developed world. Environmentalists fear the massive rise will threaten the country's "clean, green" image. Figures from the International Energy Agency (IEA) show global carbon dioxide emissions from fuel combustion grew 33 per cent between 1990 and 2006. Over the same period, Australia's emissions grew 52 per cent and the United States' rose 17 per cent, while Britain's dropped by 3 per cent. However, the Ministry of Economic Development, which provided data to the IEA, said New Zealand's figure was smaller. IEA figures state New Zealand's 37 tonnes of carbon-equivalent emissions in 2006, up from 21 tonnes in 1990, was 0.17 per cent of the world's total, compared with energy powerhouses the US (5697 tonnes) and China (5649 tonnes). However, environmentalists said the report could harm the country's reputation.
Now Kiwiblogh and other National Party mouthpieces were breathlessly quick to tell NZ that Nicks claims of how much it would cost the poor little kiwi battler to cut back on our emissions standards yet it turned out that Nick Smith was lying through his teeth and that the ‘consultation’ process was greenwash because National had already made up their mind to let big polluters get away with it.
From Keith Ng’s devastating critique of Nick Smith’s mishandling of the cost information…
When the report said that "40%" would cost $15b, it meant that if our carbon credit allocations were reduced by 40%, and our emissions level was unchanged, then it could cost New Zealand the equivalent of $15b.
So the cost that Smith talks about is categorically NOT the cost of cutting New Zealand's emissions.
It is the opposite. It is the cost that New Zealand could face if we DON'T cut our emissions. Every unit of emission that we reduce now is a unit that come off this "$15 billion" price tag that Smith talks about.
Of course, the "$15 billion" was the worst-case-scenario. It's not outlandish, but it's definitely on the high end. But since Smith thought it was a reasonable enough scenario to use for his own ends, I'm happy to hold him to it:
According to the analysis that Nick Smith has been waving around, if we keep to the current emissions trends, it will cost us $15b per year – or $60 per person per week – by 2020.
Of course, cutting emissions will cost money too. But it'll be offset by the reduction in the carbon credits we have to purchase. That's the whole point of an emissions trading system.
That Smith managed to get it so spectacularly wrong is either gross dishonesty, or an abject failure in reading. Either way: SPANK!