Patrons: Sir Alan Mark, KNZM, FRSNZ.
Sir Geoffrey Palmer, KCMG, AC, QC, PC.
Press release 10 August 2021
‘The release of the sixth assessment report by the IPCC signals an end to the era of good intentions about climate change,’ says co-chair of Wise Response, Jim Salinger. ‘The definitive results from this meta-study of all available research show that without immediate transformative action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, we are facing irreversible changes in our climate. There is no more room for procrastination or high-minded posturing. We must act now, or consign our children and their children to spending their lives in increasingly erratic and extreme circumstances.’
Dr Salinger says that ‘Some will ask why this matters for Aotearoa New Zealand. It’s because we are facing the same radically disruptive consequences as the rest of the world. Our growing seasons are shifting. Droughts and floods that were once rare are increasingly normal. Wildfires are a new threat. Marine heat waves threaten our livelihoods. Sea level rise threatens our coastlines and communities. And New Zealand’s emissions are among the worst in the world per capita, nearly half of which come from methane which must be urgently reduced.’
‘We believe in doing our fair share and in being good Pacific neighbours,’ says Dr Salinger. ‘But even if we discount those fundamental commitments, and think of ourselves as separate from the rest of the world, we must now recognise that the day of climate reckoning has arrived. It calls for a response from each one of us.’