Corporate CEOs “get” climate action but local “business friendly” community leaders don’t. What gives?

On the issue of taking strong action on climate change Thames-Coromandel Mayor Sandra Goudie and a majority of councillors are out of step with 90% of other councils, 109 of New Zealand’s top companies and 80% of the New Zealand population who are concerned about climate change.  This is outrageous.

Newsroom columnist Rod Oram has written an excellent article about the Climate Leaders Coalition, a grouping of 109 Kiwi companies which are committed to measurable reductions in their greenhouse gas emissions.  Today, its members account for 60 percent of New Zealand’s gross emissions, employ more than 170,000 people, and represent nearly one third of private sector GDP.  In one year, emission cuts achieved are already equivalent to taking 264,000 cars off the road.

The CEOs of these major companies are genuinely committed to tackling climate change.  In any other context these same CEOs would be lauded by our local Mayor and business friendly Thames-Coromandel councillors as captains of industry who are leading us to a stronger and more prosperous society.  But when it comes to taking action on climate change and following their example, our local leaders pretend that they alone know better and have refused to commit to any emission reduction measures or to have any kind of credible climate mitigation plan.

So now we have a local authority out of step not only with 90% of other local authorities which have signed the LGNZ climate change declaration, but also with over 100 of our largest corporates, not to mention public opinion.  The latest July 2019 IPSOS poll produce these results –

IAG IPSOS Poll July 19

With the Local Authority elections coming up in early October now is the best chance in three years to hold every candidate to account on the climate crisis.

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