Published 6 October 2009
“Goodbye nanny state, hello green economy,” Environment & Climate Change Minister Nick Smith told a National Party support group at the weekend.
Mr Smith told the annual Bluegreens Forum in Taupo: “The Government’s environmental agenda is about rolling back nanny state regulations and achieving better environmental outcomes through financial incentives.” The Bluegreens are the National Party’s advisory group on environmental issues.
"There is no debate that New Zealand needs to use energy more efficiently, reduce emissions, protect our biodiversity and clean up our waterways. The Government is changing the way we tackle these issues. We are about treating New Zealanders as adults, sharing with them good information and providing financial incentives to help the environment.
"The old-style environmentalism was not working and alienated many New Zealanders from changes needed to improve the environment. We have implemented financial incentives of $1000/household from December 2008 for solar water systems, 42c/l from 1 April for sustainable biofuels, $1800/household from 1 July for home insulation, a $10/tonne levy for waste to landfill from 1 July and, from 1 October, exempted full electric cars from road user charges – a saving of 6c/km.
"Added to these, the improved emissions trading scheme will, from 1 July next year, introduce an incentive of $25/tonne for planting trees and $12.50/tonne for reducing emissions across the economy. These measures are all about growing the New Zealand economy.
"This weekend we’re launching the biggest-ever energy savings campaign with The Energy Spot, a year-long, 3 nights/week television campaign that will give helpful information on how homes & businesses can save energy.
"Another facet of our new style of environmental governance is the Land & Water Forum initiative, which has brought a wide range of partners together to try & build a consensus on a way forward for water management in New Zealand.
“Our balanced approach aims for New Zealand to be both environmentally & economically sustainable."
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Attribution: Ministerial release, story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.