This submission introduces OraTaiao, describes the basis for our submission, and attaches two previous related submissions, then responds to the first eight questions of the ETS 2015/16 Priority Issues Review.
Our two main points are:
1. NZ needs an overall plan to get to a zero emissions economy around three decades from now, where the ETS is one tool amongst a suite of emissions reductions policies and programmes.
2. The cost-benefit analysis underpinning the ETS review needs to include the benefits of action – including health co-benefits which can be experienced relatively soon.
B: Who we are
OraTaiao: The New Zealand Climate and Health Council (OraTaiao, The Council) is an incorporated society of over 420 health professional members who understand that climate change is fundamentally a threat to human wellbeing and are concerned by this, but also understand that well-designed climate action can bring more immediate benefits to health and fairness.
Within its membership, OraTaiao has some of the world’s leading climate-health experts, and is consolidating linkages with health bodies and other climate-health organisations in New Zealand and internationally.
C: Submission basis
OraTaiao base our submission on the following:
• The world needs to get greenhouse gas emissions down to zero by 2050 to contribute to world not exceeding 1.5’C warming (moral target); NZ should do so sooner as one of the more developed countries with high historical emissions
• NZ has agreed to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions 30% below 2005 levels / 11% below 1990 levels by 2030 (short term target) and will be expected to increase ambition over time.
• Well-designed emissions reduction policies can give substantial cost effective health gains in the shorter term additional to longer term reduction of climate threats to our health and wellbeing.
• Failure to achieve global greenhouse gas emissions reductions and consequent climate change will bring health damage and costs
• Uncontrolled climate change has the potential to increase health inequities
• The impact of greenhouse gas emissions reduction policies on health equity and other equity domains will depend on the design on the policy
Read full submission here.