TOP and ACT both offer an alternative for Green voters

The NZ Green Party are green on the outside and red on the inside.

At the moment when anyone mentions the Green Party the first thought that springs to mind is their co-leader’s beneficiary fraud, not clean rivers and oceans or the environment. Even though Green is in their party’s name many of their policies are red and they are no longer the only party that cares about the environment. The Opportunities Party is one party competing for the Green vote as explained by TOP candidate Geoff Simmons.

Environmental Issues

We share basically the same goals with the Greens in this respect – we want clean rivers, a zero carbon/ fossil fuel free economy by 2050, and to protect our oceans. The main difference in policy here is over the how, rather than the what.

The Greens have a dogmatic opposition to using market-based mechanisms. TOP on the other hand, are interested in what works. The OECD has shown that market mechanisms are an important part of the mix if we want to improve the environment and the economy at the same time. Central to TOP’s approach is making sure that Polluters Pay for the damage they do.

…As for climate change, based on their current policy of a $25 carbon tax, which is way below what is going to be required to achieve any meaningful emissions targets, the Greens have little chance of achieving their goal of a zero carbon economy.

Working with National

The Greens are committed to working with Labour to #changethegovt. TOP just wants policy change regardless of tribal politics. And the Greens are not prepared to work with National, which means that by voting for them, the environment is only represented in government half the time (or less).  We don’t think that the environment should be considered by government half the time – hence the need for a centrist environmental party that is prepared to work with either National or Labour.

Last year Act leader David Seymour made a play for the Green vote. Seymour’s proposal was to sell state-owned farm company Landcorp so that the funds could be used to develop and preserve New Zealand’s environmental heritage by creating predator-free sanctuaries. His stated goal was to “bring back the birdsong” by restoring the dawn chorus. When Geoff Simmons was an economist working for the Morgan Foundation he had this to say about Act’s environmental policy.

ACT is making a determined pitch for environmentally engaged voters who might be put off by the Green Party’s more Left-tinged economic policies and by National’s innate emphasis on conservatism rather than conservation.

…Mr Seymour speaks of harnessing the immense community enthusiasm for environmental projects already under way, in places like Wellington and Nelson, and says every town should have one of these.

But the question is how to fund that and he wants an arm’s-length body set up with the proceeds of a sale of Landcorp to provide the financial base for such a venture which he calls Sanctuary New Zealand.

…property rights need to be at the core of environmental protection, he says.

…Our native species are in trouble. New Zealand has the highest percentage of endangered species in the world.

…There is no doubt that eradicating predators carries the best value for money in the conservation space. Our native flora and fauna will flourish as long as we take out invasive mammal predators. That is what makes New Zealand unique – here conservation is actually about killing. This was one of the findings of the Our Far South expedition, which spawned the Million Dollar Mouse campaign to eradicate mice from the Antipodes Islands

…This finding was also behind the Morgan Foundation’s funding of Predator Free New Zealand, which aims to rid our fair land of rats, mustelids (stoats) and possums…



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If you agree with me that’s nice but what I really want to achieve is to make you question the status quo. Look between the lines, do your own research. Do not be a passive observer in this game we call life.