Prime minister Jacinda Ardern called it “one of the greatest challenges of the time”.
NEW ZEALAND DECLARES A CLIMATE CHANGE EMERGENCY.
New Zealand has declared a climate change emergency and committed to a carbon-neutral government by 2025.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the climate emergency declaration was based on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s findings that to avoid more than 1.5 degree Celsius rise in global warming, emissions would need to fall by around 45% from 2010 levels by 2023 and reach zero by around 2050.
After a long hour debate, a majority of parliamentarians voted in favour of the declaration. The main opposition National party voted against it saying it was nothing but “virtue signalling”.
Wednesday’s declaration also said the government will “demonstrate what is possible to other sectors of the economy by reducing the government’s emissions and becoming a carbon-neutral government by 2025”.
According to Adern “this declaration is an acknowledgement of the next generation. An acknowledgement of the burden that they will carry if we do not get this right and do not take actions now.”
By making this decision, New Zealand joins 32 other countries including Japan, Canada, France and Britain that have declared a climate emergency.