Green questions

 At the Green party annual confrence, Jeanette Fitzsimons asked three questions related to the Greens potential coalition partners. They were:  
1)At what level do they plan to cap greenhouse gas emmissions and who will get the permits?  
2) How much bigger are they prepared to allowed the dairy industry to grow, given its damaging effects on water quality, water allocation and climate change?
3) (relating only to key and rewritten) What do you plan to do about the “underclass”? Can you guarentee that benefits will not be cut, the conditions for recieving benefits will not become more stringent, the minimum wage wil continue to rise and there will be no bulk funding of education should national be elected in to office?
 It will be interesting to see any responses to these questions. I doubt that a Greens-National coalition will be viable given the oppposing ideologies of these parties and the serious possibility that the Greens could loose many votes in 2011 if they enter a coalition with National after 2008.
Anyway here is how I would answer the questions proposed: 1) At the current level of emmisions, with the cap being steadily reduced. a valid criticism of National’s proposal to half emmisions by 2050 is that it sets a date too far in the future to mean much, and needs a series of smaller targets leading up to 2050. The allocations problem is much harder. No Right Turn proposes an auction, but this will further hurt bussiness. Giving them to existing polluters for free would reward those existing polluters.
Another way to reduce emmisions would be for a carbon tax, but use all the money from the carbon tax to cutting the company tax rate, thus there being no net costs for business overall, but the polluting ones would pay more, while efficient ones would benefit.
2) Market forces would determine the growth of the dairy imndustry, but carbon emmisions trading and carbon tax would reduce that growth.
3) Yes to those questions about benefits, with the possible exception of sickness benefits, which have increased by 50% since Labour took office. The minimum wage would be ajusted for inflation, but may be reviewed. Although the minimum wage helps ensure workers are paid fairly, it distorts the market so there are fewer people employed. As for bulk funding of schools, this would enable schools instead of bueracrats in Wellington to decide how schools spend their money and I fail to see how this would harm the underclass.

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Explore posts in the same categories: Climate change, Green Party

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