Scott Willis
Scott Willis6 hours ago
Environment Minister David Parker is going to have a hard time ignoring the actions of the Chair and the majority of Councillors at the Otago Regional Council this time:
+ Ignoring expert advice
+ Rejecting staff recommendations
+ Refusing transparency
+ Continuing to delay the land and water regional plan
+ An inability to retain staff
+ Poor relationship management with Kāi Tahu and stakeholders

We don't yet know the cost of the CEO's abrupt resignation but I have no doubt it is significant. It's no small thing to lose democratic representation and yet we must be sailing very close to having Commissioners installed. Perhaps the Minister will wait until after the #LocalBodyElections2022 before making a decision. We desperately need a Council that understands good governance and that has an ability to make decisions: to work with transparency and with partners for ecosystem restoration and intergenerational justice. #NoMoreClosedDoor #LetTheSunIn
Scott Willis
Scott Willis3 days ago
I haven't had time to dig deeply into the Emissions Reduction Plan today. I've seen some commentary however. Thomas Nash argues that "Greens are responsible for the plan existing as a statutory document, which is good, but Labour’s majority government Cabinet Ministers are responsible for the commitments in the plan, which seem mostly inadequate."

There are good things in it as far as I can see, particularly for transport. It's also positive, but so overdue, that the Government will finally review regulatory tools to incentivise renewable electricity generation for example. But we've been calling for regulatory change for close to a decade so it is about time! And on agriculture we need a #FarmingForTheFuture plan. To get real action we will need a strong Green voice in the next Government because timidity won't deliver what is needed. Still, this is a big deal. We have finally begun the journey and James Shaw has done a fantastic job of getting so many to sign up to action. It's thanks to the Greens that this exists at all, but the mahi has only really just begun.
Scott Willis
Scott Willis
Scott Willis3 days ago
We need clean ways to get around, improved bus, train and ferry services and easier access to public cycling, scooter and walking facilities and networks to reduce our transport emissions. 17% of gross domestic emissions and 39% of total domestic CO2 emissions come from transport. The #ClimatePlan reduces transport emissions by:
• investing to improve and increase walkways and cycleways; to help councils deliver bike/scooter networks, reallocate street space for walking, cycling, and dedicated bus lanes and develop network plans for walking and cycling. It will see a national plan to increase walking and cycling and accessible streets proposals implemented across the country. $400 million invested here.
• better public transport. From 2025, urban bus service providers will have to buy only zero emission buses. The plan aims to decarbonise the public transport bus fleet by 2035. $40 million being invested to support this.
• establishing a nationally integrated ticketing system for public transport.
• funding for better bus stops and other bus priority measures.
• investigating the potential for shared services, and more walking and cycling in rural and provincial areas
• a national strategy to decarbonise freight including having more freight by rail.
• having a Clean Car Standard from 2023 so we don’t become a dumping ground for high emission polluting vehicles.
• making electric vehicles (EVs) more affordable through support for social leasing schemes for EVs and a vehicle scrap and replace scheme trial to help low income households shift to low emission alternatives; and increasing the EV-charging infrastructure. $568 million being invested here.
#NZclimateplan #zeroemissionsnz #NZGreens
Photo: Kiwi Bus Builders.
Scott Willis
Scott Willis4 days ago
Tomorrow we'll get to see the Emissions Reduction Plan. It is a big deal. But we know Government, both national and local, is very much lagging on climate action. To boost ambition and to ensure bold action, we need to push from the flax-roots too.

That's why this resource from Lawyers for Climate Action NZ Inc is so useful. And remember, we have #LocalBodyElections2022 this year as well. #CollectiveClimateConsciousness #ClimateJustice
Scott Willis
Scott Willis5 days ago
We have local body elections this year. Who we elect matters for democracy, natural justice and care for Papatūānuku.

The dysfunction of Governance at the Otago Regional Council has never been more obvious. I have a number of questions I'd love Councillors to answer, such as:
1. How many Governance meetings have been held from which the public have been excluded?
2. How many with no executive present?
3. How many decisions have been made challenging the knowledge of scientific experts without executive advice?
4. Does the Chair still enjoy the full confidence of other Councillors?
5. Why have some Councillors sought to delay the land and water regional plan against staff advice?
6. What is the full cost of the CEO's abrupt resignation?

I'd love some answers as I am sure would many others. Sunlight is the best disinfectant. Failing that, we have #LocalBodyElections2022. Who we elect really does matter.