The Environmental Defence Society has strongly endorsed the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment’s call for the establishment of a Climate Commission.
That is a key outcome of her new report Stepping stones to Paris and beyond: Climate change, progress, and predictability.
“As the Commissioner says, addressing climate change is a long game, covering generations. To plan, implement and monitor progress requires a dedicated entity, properly resourced and mandated,” said EDS CEO Gary Taylor.
“Like the Commissioner, we are strongly of the view that we need to get away from the current paradigm of offering ad hoc measures with no overall coherence.
“Timing is critical here: we don’t have to do everything at once, but what is urgently required is an overall plan that gets us to net zero emissions that considers evolving technologies, inter-sector equity, practicality and affordability.
“If we take action too late we may not get there. Unplanned transition will likely have negative cost implications.
“We need a carbon budget that demonstrably works and then monitor progress against interim targets. That role is best handled by a dedicated entity overseen by experts.
“EDS has examined the UK Climate Change Act and like Dr Wright, think that it offers a useful model. We have the genesis of cross-party agreement in the Globe initiative of parliamentarians: the trick now is to use those foundations and translate that initiative into forward-looking decisions.
“EDS with other partners is hosting the Australia-New Zealand Climate Change and Business Conference in Auckland in October and we have invited Lord Deben, Chairman of the UK Climate Committee to speak and he has accepted. Hopefully that will help build momentum and consensus around the creation of a New Zealand version of that entity.
“EDS would like to congratulate Dr Wright on another excellent report as her term as Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment winds down,” Mr Taylor concluded.