Clean green image under fire. The Global Warming Debate:
May 4, 2007
After years of stark warnings about the pace of global warming, the world's top scientists have now agreed that saving the planet is possible.
But the meeting of climate change experts in Bangkok coincides with new figures released by the government that show gas emissions in New Zealand are still heavily on the rise.
Latest figures show that in 2005 NZ's total greenhouse gas emissions exceeded 77 million tonnes - two million more than previous years.
"It just makes a farce of the government's commitment to this notion of carbon neutrality...they're going up and they're going up faster than they ever have in New Zealand's history and they're going up faster than any of the countries in which we would want to be compared," says National MP Nick Smith.
But the government says '05 was a particularly dry year and more coal and gas was used to generate power because of empty hydro lakes.
"Since 1990 the main increases have been divided between energy and agriculture and that's why the government says every sector should do their bit to reduce emissions," says Climate Change Minister David Parker.
New Zealand contributes 0.2 of the world's greenhouse gas emissions.
Scientists gathering at the summit in Thailand say if something is not done now, the planet is in strife. But they say it can be done through more renewable energy, more energy efficiency and greener transport - all of which are available and affordable now.
The leading experts from around the world have put together a master plan that they say will limit global warming to 2 degrees this century - a key threshold.
Source: One News