New Zealand has received a poor rating for its efforts on climate change, ranked 43rd overall in the Climate Change Performance Index 2015 – an annual assessment of the world's largest CO2 emitters released this morning at the UN climate conference in Lima, Peru.
New Zealand has fallen two places from last year's assessment, placing just ahead of the US and China.
The CCPI uses standardised criteria to evaluate and compare the climate protection performance of 58 countries that are, together, responsible for more than 90 percent of global energy-related CO2 emissions. It is published by Germanwatch and Climate Action Network Europe.
New Zealand performs worst in the 'climate policy' category, where it receives a 'very poor' grade. It is ranked 53rd for national policy with a score of 18.35 out of 100.
Commenting on the report release, Generation Zero spokesperson Paul Young said: “These results are not surprising, but they should serve as a wake-up call for anyone who believes New Zealand is currently pulling its weight on climate change.”
“The truth is that the Government is doing next to nothing to reduce our carbon pollution and is leaving other countries to do the heavy lifting. That's not fair, and it's pretty dumb for a country that markets itself as clean and green.”
“It's important to recognise that the CCPI doesn't consider agricultural emissions, so the usual excuse that 'New Zealand is different' doesn't apply here. Our poor ranking shows we have a lot to do to clean up our act on energy and transport.”
“The good news is that there are abundant opportunities here in New Zealand to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels – such as clean energy, wood fuels, public transport and electric vehicles.”
Generation Zero yesterday launched its #CutTheGap campaign, calling on Climate Change Minister Tim Groser to commit to new action to cut New Zealand's carbon pollution by 2020 and announce this to the world in Lima. See www.generationzero.org/cutthegap.