I take a unique view of things. Having studied climate change at university for 4 years I fully support the mainstream scientific community's diagnosis in regards to a warming planet, but have little support for their prescribed medicine of economic and industrial strangulation.
I don't deny climate change but suggest an alternative view of it and different solutions.
Climate change is a side effect of human existence. An inevitable bi product of growth, technological development, higher standards of living and longer life spans.
It's an ignorant naivety to think that we can enhance humanity's standard of living without environmental trade-offs. It's like having a company which only makes revenue but incurs no costs.
Well intentioned climate change crusaders are not helping things with radicalised behaviour which at times borders on environmental terrorism.
In my eyes technological development created, identified and will ultimately solve any anthropogenically enhanced climate change (not to be confused with naturally occurring climate change).
This technological development has meant humanity's environmental cost per unit of GDP generated has been shrinking for decades and we must continue to innovate and find ways to do more with less.
Population growth has somewhat stymied the positive effect but I don't see many greenies calling for population controls... just threatening to poison babies with 1080 unfortunately if they don't get their way.
At 0.17% of global emissions, to think strangulation of NZ industry and agribusiness can make a planet wide difference is ridiculous. To think the world will follow our lead at great economic cost is just as ridiculous. We could sink into the ocean and it would make no difference. The USA emits as much Co2 in 2 days as NZ does in a year.
We can only keep improving if we have the desire to innovate and more importantly the funds to do so.
Environmental choices, and as importantly research and development cost money, we need the profits from our successful economy to fund these.
The clean Ideas and emissions reduction technology we create here in NZ could be sold to the world's large polluters. This not only earns us a living but might actually knock's back Co2 emissions on a broader scale. There is a huge scope for this in agriculture and we should be working hard in this area.
Targets which require shutting factories and removing cows will only leave our country devoid of money to fund environmental choice and struggling to look after our citizens.
The sheer reality is that as long we all want iPhones, overseas holidays, Facebook and beer fridges we will have an impact on our environment and most people deep down do want their consumer goods.
The best way to mitigate these effects is via new technology from further incentivising R&D along with promoting and rewarding clean exports not via punishing emissions and strangling our economy.
Mark writes a regular column for the Mountain Scene - View the original HERE,
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