The Zero Carbon Bill

Essay 1: The Zero Carbon Bill

Barry Brill has given us these eleven essays on the Zero Carbon Bill. Do sample these enjoyable pieces for yourself, with their crisp writing and clear logic. It’s illuminating to absorb Barry’s analysis of the origins of the Bill, its aims, strategies, substantial flaws, and his oh-so-pragmatic strategy to align the Bill with our international obligations without exposing our lower classes to the egregious fanaticism of the coalition’s Green climate dogma.

Barry’s first essay (pdf, 185 KB) opens with the startling news that the Bill is

not only the most expensive (by orders of magnitude) but might also be the most dangerous piece of government legislation ever placed before New Zealand’s House of Representatives. (– emphasis added)

Among its faults, any of which ought to have denied it a first reading, the Bill:

  • Doesn’t admit the obvious fact that shutting down even our total emissions wouldn’t affect the global climate. The Bill and the enormous effort it calls for is no more than a pathetic, expensive signal of virtue.
  • Increases poverty, hitting the poor 20% harder than the wealthy.
  • Embraces enormous economic risk that the rest of the world fails to follow us or the imagined technological developments fail to materialise.
  • Is fantastically anti-democratic and unconstitutional in allowing Minister Shaw to unilaterally impose the largest tax increases in history.
  • Allows Minister Shaw unlimited authority, by himself, to determine climate risks and what to do about them, and it overrides all protections in the RMA or anywhere else in our laws.
  • Establishes government intervention in every aspect of daily life—the economy, society and environment.
  • Drives a wedge between town and country, imposing unattainable planetary cooling obligations on our farmers, contrary to recent science.

Don’t worry, there’s an automatic pilot

During the term of this government, James Shaw will announce the maximum volume of each greenhouse gas that can be lawfully emitted in each year during 2020-2036, along with the government’s plans for enforcing these caps. A new Climate Commission, appointed by the Minister, will identify the level of energy taxes (or livestock tax) required in each year to prevent those caps being exceeded, and will then implement those levels by changing ETS settings.

Once the Minister’s caps are declared, the delivery process is on automatic pilot. Energy price will simply rise to whatever level it takes to become unaffordable for enough people. Petrol will go up by previously unimagined leaps and bounds until a great many New Zealanders can no longer drive their cars. Low-income and fixed-income drivers will obviously be the first to drop out, then it will be the turn of average wage-earners. Rural dwellers will be the hardest hit.

Nobody knows how high the per-litre price might need to go. Personal or family hardship is not a relevant factor and nor is economic damage. But there is no turning back, because the declared caps are legally binding and so entrenched that neither James Shaw nor his successors can change them (except in very narrow circumstances).

But after that the essay gets depressing.

Have you seen the Bill itself?

Read it online or download it (pdf, 312 KB).

11 Thoughts on “The Zero Carbon Bill

  1. Ian Cooper on August 28, 2019 at 4:11 pm said:

    I have told anyone willing to listen, and I’ll say it here. The Green Parties of the world are the most dangerous political parties on the planet! I say this as a former Labour Party member at high school, then a Values Party member when my generation of 18 year olds got to be the first of that age to vote in a General Election, the one when Muldoon got in BTW.

    I considered myself politically active back then but in all honesty I was very naïve as were nearly all of our age group back then. The push by the Greens in particular to allow 16 year olds to vote is just a cynical ploy to manipulate young minds who have an awful lot to learn about the world, and the adults who push the buttons in the background. We weren’t all dummies, but Muldoon in particular taught us all a hard political lesson.

    The general populace, dare I say it, “Rob’s Mob,” need to be woken from their slumber and informed of the consequences of allowing this bill to proceed. When I think of changes that have occurred since I cast my first vote nearly 44 years ago, that have arisen from decisions made by politicians only concerned with the next 3 years, then I can only concur with the gloomy (is that too soft a term) outlook for us all when we are hog-tied to the hellish nightmare about to be perpetrated by the leader of the Green Party and his acolytes, Labour & NZ First!

  2. I am speaking and presenting factual information next Thursday in Hamilton on the Zero carbon Bill
    My main submission deals with stock methane emissions emissions .I have two graphs that show how methane levels flat lined in the atmosphere for ten years till 2009 and then have steadily risen by 10 parts per billion each year.
    The second graph is world coal production which also flat lined from about 1990 to about2007 and then a dramatic surge of coal mining then took place ,2005 under 5 billion tonnes of coal was mined and in 2015
    world coal tonnage exceeded 8 billion tones.
    I read on the internet that scientist did not know why methane levels were increasing Really?
    Blame the problem which is methane from coal extraction and leave live stock alone .
    I will tell the panel that methane from livestock is the only emissions that are not extracted from the earths mantle and livestock emit NO additional carbon atoms to the atmosphere because all the methane they emit comes from plants that have absorbed CO2 is cycled back into CO2 and then grow pasture and other forage .
    I have then quoted from the United Nations who have stated ” that governments should take action to restrict GHG emissions in a manner that does not THREATEN food security .” and that the UN has forecast that 2 billion more people will have to be fed by 2050 .
    This is a very dangerous bill and only a change of government can prevent a terrible disaster in this fair land .
    Graham

  3. There does not seem to be much interest on this site about the most destructive bill that has ever been proposed in the New Zealand Parliament at least for the last 70 years.
    We have a minister attempting to put a bill into law that no future government will be able to rescind.
    This is not democracy in any sense of the word .
    Have the population had the chance to vote in a referendum ?
    NO this is a very few select misguided individuals trying to lock this country into a down ward spiral which will do untold harm to our future population and reduce food exports from New Zealand for many people in other countries .
    We have the Brexit saga in the UK and opposition politicians doing there darnedest to scuttle what the population voted for .
    The opposition are shouting that Boris Johnson is a tyrant and what he is doing to shut down the UK Parliament for a few weeks is undemocratic and should not be allowed .
    The electorate voted for Brexit .That is democracy .Has the electorate voted for this Zero Carbon Bill ?
    No but you can have your say,but we ( James Shaw and his merry followers ) don’t need to take any notice
    of what you say .
    Do you see what I am saying .Here a law that will affect every person in this county from now till next century is being pushed through Parliament and if passed by 62 votes it can never be changed.
    In the UK the people have had their say but the opposition will not recognize a decision by the people and are determined that they know better .
    Graham Anderson

  4. Man of Thessaly on September 1, 2019 at 12:49 am said:

    Gwan: “We have a minister attempting to put a bill into law that no future government will be able to rescind. … if passed by 62 votes it can never be changed.”

    You sound a little hysterical, Graham. Calm down, there is no way to do this in New Zealand law. Parliament can make and repeal laws, as has been done many times in the past. That’s why Shaw is so keen to pass this with support from the Opposition: so that they will be less likely to change their mind and repeal it at the next change of Government.

    I think all the Select Committee sessions are being broadcast on Facebook. I look forward to seeing yours.

  5. Richard Treadgold on September 1, 2019 at 10:10 am said:

    MoT,

    You sound a little hysterical, Graham. Calm down, there is no way to do this in New Zealand law.

    You’re right about the law. I’m advised that from time to time parliament attempts to “entrench” an Act, but it’s not possible, as a simple majority will overthrow it. However, it was a simple misapprehension on Graham’s part, nothing to do with hysteria—you overreact.

    The Zero Carbon Bill remains unconstitutional, undemocratic, fantastically expensive, the world’s second-most expensive virtue signal (after Britain’s), elevates the Minister for Climate Change to the most powerful Prime Minister ever, lacks all foundation in science—worse, the IPCC assessment reports wilfully ignore what is known—makes a mockery of dissenting opinion from around the world and blatantly shuts down reasonable discussion.

    Yet there is no objection from you. Building your perfect world, is it?

    I’d love to discuss this some time.

  6. Richard Treadgold on September 1, 2019 at 10:36 am said:

    Graham,

    There does not seem to be much interest on this site about the most destructive bill that has ever been proposed in the New Zealand Parliament at least for the last 70 years.

    I don’t think many people know what to say about it, nor do they have access to legal friends to learn more. Hence my posts. I can say that hundreds visit here every day. They give me hope that the hunger for truth has not withered away.

    There is the question of whether the Bill is legally binding. In his first essay, Barry asserts:

    But there is no turning back, because the declared caps are legally binding and so entrenched that neither James Shaw nor his successors can change them (except in very narrow circumstances).

    This seems to conflict with the idea that legislation cannot be entrenched for future Parliaments. Perhaps that addresses not the repeal of an Act, but a modification of it? We’ll have to wait on a legal opinion. Any lawyers listening?

  7. Thank for that Richard ,
    This is what I was commenting on and at least some one has noticed and a debate can take place here .
    I was commenting on this paragraph that you have just quoted.
    If the correct facts are put before the government they will make the correct decision .
    unfortunately there is so much disinformation such as methane from live stock being lumped in with coal .
    Over 8 billion tonnes of coal burnt last year releasing up to 64 million tonnes of methane and over 22 billion tonnes of CO2,
    These are all emissions that have been locked below the ground for millions of years.
    On the other hand live stock do NOT emit one ADDITIONAL CARBON ATOM TO THE ATMOSPHERE .
    Graham Anderson

  8. Richard Treadgold on September 1, 2019 at 2:17 pm said:

    Graham,

    I was commenting on this paragraph that you have just quoted.

    Yes, and what you say is exactly right. But then you say:

    If the correct facts are put before the government they will make the correct decision.

    And in that you go astray, because their aim is political redemption of mankind through socialism, and they deny the science of global warming. Why do they deny it? Because everyone from the United Nations down the ladder of international responsibility claim “the IPCC have the science, they have the answers, ask them.” Yet, shockingly, the IPCC have no evidence.

    We can talk about the characteristics of methane and carbon dioxide until the cows come home, and that’s useful information, but we absolutely must address the underlying impulse in the human heart to save mankind from himself. That is what socialism appeals to, even though the 20th Century makes it clear it caters only for the leaders of socialism and, in every country it’s been tried at an advanced level, sadly, without exception, the leaders oppress, maim and murder their opponents. Most of their opponents began as their followers. The impulse in the heart to save people weakens with a rise in power.

    Nobody checks what the IPCC says except the sceptics. Then we ask questions because some of what they say makes no sense or contradicts known facts, we ask them about it, get no answers and nobody hears our complaints because we’re kept out of the newspaper, off the airwaves, away from the TV shows and even out of the university conference centres. We’re left with websites. Which is great, except the audiences are orders of magnitude smaller than the established media.

    What’s left are public appearances. Who wants to come to mine?

  9. Sorry Richard I slipped up there.I was in a hurry as my grand daughter was taking me to the movies for Fathers Day .What I should have said was “they should be able to come to the right decision but they probably won,t .”
    Graham

  10. I put forward my submission at the select committee on the Zero carbon bill in Hamilton today .Each submitter had 5 minutes so I had to pick out 5 points to emphasize.
    1st
    The United Nations has stated that countries should reduce GHG emissions in a manner that does not THREATEN food production. The latest report states that 2 billion more people will need to be fed by 2050.It will be disastrous if food exporting nations reduce their output of food in the quest of reducing GHG emissions .
    2nd
    Biogenic methane from livestock is the only emission that does not come from beneath the earths surface and is the only emission that adds NO carbon atoms to the atmosphere.
    3rd
    I produced a graph that showed the atmospheric methane levels at Mauna Loa in Hawaii and below a graph of world coal extraction since 1950 projected to 2050 .Methane levels flat lined from 1999 till 2008 and coal was also static at around 4.7 billion tonnes till around 2007 and then surged to over 8 billion tonnes which could emit up to 64 million tonnes of methane per year as fugitive emissions .
    Blame fugitive emissions
    from fossil fuel and leave livestock alone .
    4th
    Emissions from livestock should not be levied or taxed as no other country is taxing or levying their farmers .A great number of countries pay their farmers subsidies to produce food and impose tariffs on our imports to protect their farmers .New Zealand’s produce has the lowest emission profile of any country and any reduction here would result in more emissions as other countries made up the shortfall .
    5th
    Biogenic methane emissions were included in the Kyoto treaty with no scientific scrutiny and should not be included in any countries GHG profile as they will never raise the temperature of the world .
    The add No carbon atoms or molecules of CH4 or CO2 as the process is cyclic .
    With a concerted effort to capture fugitive methane emissions from energy extraction levels will stabilize as they have done from 1999 to 2008 and live stock can regain their rightful place in feeding the world .
    Graham Anderson

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