28, Jan, 2015

New Zealand’s Climate Movement is growing

Category: News

“New Zealand’s Climate Movement is growing bigger and more organised”, said OFO member Rosemary Penwarden on the eve of the “Taranaki’s Beauty and the Beast” weekend conference that has attracted climate activists and interested people from around the country.

Last year Oil Free Otago held their Oil Free Future Summit in Dunedin. This year Climate Justice Taranaki, ECO (Environment and Conservation Organisation) and Sustainable Whanganui Trust are moving the focus to Taranaki. The highlight of the weekend is a Saturday field trip around Taranaki’s oil and gas fields to learn what it’s like to live amidst them. Other sessions will be on fracking, drilling-waste disposal, seabed mining, climate justice and the implications of the RMA changes.

“Down here in Dunedin we are often told how good it would be if we had oil and gas like Taranaki. I’m looking forward to seeing that reality for myself” said Ms Penwarden. “Communities where fossil fuel extraction occurs seem to draw the short straw; they get very little benefit but all the risks. And we all have to deal with the end result of more extraction and burning of fossil fuels: climate change.

Ms Penwarden said some electric car conversions are being planned for Dunedin. “It’s pretty exciting that we have the expertise for this right here. In the meantime, many of us carpool and take public transport wherever possible.”

“But that’s not enough. We also need to step up our resistance against more fossil fuel extraction. We urgently need to move from fossil fuels to clean energy in order to secure a liveable future for our kids.”


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