HDPA: Climate Change Commission recommendations a stab in the dark at best

Author
Heather du Plessis-Allan,
Publish Date
Thu, 10 Jun 2021, 7:23PM

HDPA: Climate Change Commission recommendations a stab in the dark at best

Author
Heather du Plessis-Allan,
Publish Date
Thu, 10 Jun 2021, 7:23PM

The more I understand about the Climate Change Commission’s recommendations yesterday, the more this looks like a set of pie-in-the-sky, cross-your –fingers-and-hope assumptions that have as much chance of being right as they do of being wrong.  

So many of Rod Carr’s predictions and hopes have to go right in the next 20 years in order for us to meet his goals and aims.

We need someone, anyone, to fly even just one electric plane commercially in New Zealand.

We need car makers to build enough EVs for the world and then sell enough of them to us.

We need methane busting technology to emerge so that cows burp and fart less methane so that we don’t need to cull the herd.

We need electricity suppliers to build enough electricity generation, not just for now but for when we’re running EVs and turning all our factories to off coal and gas and onto electricity – and remember, we’re currently so short of electricity this winter that methane has had to cut production.

That has to go right, but are Rod Carr’s assumptions right?  

So much has changed just between the release of the draft report five months ago and yesterday, including them wrongly assuming they wouldn’t need to plant trees on farms, they’re now factoring in a 20 percent loss in grazing land. 

It was wrong about the cost of no new gas connections 0 that’ll be higher than forecast.

It relied on Tiwai point and methane closing early to free up electricity, and that’s not happening now.

And it was wrong in thinking we’d be able to switch to EVs at a cost we could afford. Truth is, there will be very limited supplies of cheap EVs for the next decade.

So if assumptions as big as that have been proven wrong in just five months, how on earth can we expect that their assumptions are going to hold or bear out over 20 years? 

And if they’re just a bit out, what does that mean?  Not enough EVs, so we cull some of the herd?  Not enough electricity generation so the lights go out in winter?  Not as affordable as they thought, so the cost to GDP is more than one percent? 

I’d say this is a stab in the dark at best, and not one I’d like to change my life over.