The mouse that roared - Arnold Diffllock
Wake up New Zealand! If the ‘Independent’ Climate Change Commission gets its way (and it will as long as the current Government is in power) we are in for massive and destructive change in the way we go about our daily lives, particularly with regard to transport.
The Commission is led by one Rod Carr, whose birds-nest beard gives him a striking resemblance to Karl Marx. Call that hero-worship if you like, but the other disturbing thing about the Commission’s report is that not once is New Zealand mentioned, but there are about 27 references to some mythical place called ‘Aotearoa’. Be very afraid, and be even more afraid when you look at the things they are proposing.
When the rest of the world is embracing and encouraging the use of clean-burning natural gas, we’re going to abandon it. Yes, no more barbecues, and you will eventually have to rip out all your gas heating, water heating and cooking because the gas will be either unaffordable or unavailable. The restaurant industry will be doomed.
This is criminally arrogant behavior by a Government which is on a Socialist power trip, and that’s even before we get to what they want to do with transport.
New Zealand has about 0.06 per cent of the world’s population and about 0.2 per cent of the world’s cars, so any suggestion that we can influence a reduction in global C02 levels is ludicrous in the extreme. Yes, we’re going to ban the import of non-electric cars in eleven year’s time, irrespective of when similar bans might or might not come into force in the car-producing countries from which we source our stocks.
Surely a country of our insignificant size and influence should be fitting in with what happens in the rest of the world rather than trying to dictate the terms. Yes, renewable energy is a laudable objective but not when it’s unaffordable and the fast-track removal of alternatives will bankrupt the country, particularly when the revenue stream from petrol tax dries up. It is beyond belief that we would want to destroy what’s left of our economy and put thousands of jobs at risk when it will make not one jot of difference to worldwide emissions.
There seems to be no plan for additional generation capacity for the extra electricity that will be required when all the cars are electric and gas is banned. There is also no plan for the recycling/disposal of electric car batteries which have reached the end of their useful life. Worse, the lower socio-economic groups who depend on inexpensive cars for their daily transport are being told they will have to scrap them and take the bus. Yes, the Government is so arrogant that they think cycling and public transport use is going to do.
Subsidised electric cars are not the answer. If you can’t afford a $50,000 electric car you can’t afford a $45,000 one either.
The passive acceptance of this nonsense by the masses is as worrying as the adulation there is for ‘Dear Leader’, but reality will start to bite when the cost and lifestyle disruption hit home. If this Government makes it past the next election this ‘climate change’ over-reaction could well be the thing that ultimately dooms them.
After all, every big promise made by the Ardern Government since 2017 has ended up in glorious failure. From housing to Auckland light rail, from child poverty to Maori imprisonment rates, absolutely nothing has been achieved. Why would attempting to bankrupt the country for some climate virtue-signalling be any different?
Maybe there’s hope for us yet.
This article first appeared in the March 2021 issue of NZ Autocar magazine.