This section has our latest media work (including media releases, opinion editorials, radio and television interviews, and letters to the editor), as well as the latest submissions, publications, briefing papers and position statements.

To access older items, please click on the relevant links above. Media enquiries, see contact us.

Media advisory: Health sector to rally for health at the heart of the Zero Carbon Bill


Ministry right to urge reduced meat and dairy in hospitals

9 August 2019

The New Zealand Climate & Health Council and health promotion charity Doctors for Nutrition strongly support the new Sustainability and the Health Sector guidance announced last week as it will result in a much healthier population.

“People and the planet will both be healthier if we shift towards a plant-based diet, and cut back on meat and dairy, as recommended,” according to Dr Alex Macmillan, Co-convenor of OraTaiao: The NZ Climate and Health Council.

Read more

Q&A in The Conversation, 7 August 2019

Climate Q&A: will we be less healthy because of climate change? Dr Alexandra Macmillan. The Conversation, 7 August 2019.

The overwhelmingly negative effects of climate change on health are a strong argument for urgent action to reduce our climate pollution.

More here.


Zero Carbon Bill

OraTaiao submission on the Zero Carbon Bill - Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Act, 15 July 2019

"We welcome the Bill, which is not only crucial to reducing New Zealand emissions, but is also among our generation’s most important pieces of health legislation. OraTaiao, alongside other experts in climate change and health, strongly believes that tackling climate change is potentially the greatest global health opportunity of the century. Our submission is focused on the potential health gains and the other co-benefits that can result from well-designed strategies to reduce New Zealand’s emissions...

"We have major concerns, however, that the Bill: does not adequately embed health and health equity; does not adequately incorporate the benefits, costs, and risks of climate action; fails to make adequate provision for meeting the government’s obligations under Te Tiriti o Waitangi; fails to demonstrate true domestic and international leadership on greenhouse gas reduction targets; lacks enforceability mechanisms that are necessary to ensure that greenhouse gas targets are met."

Read the submission here (PDF).


Submit on the Zero Carbon Bill

Help put health at the heart of the bill!

The Government is consulting on the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill. The bill needs to be strengthened and to explicitly reference health, health equity and Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

We encourage you to make a submission as an individual or on behalf of your organisation. Closing date for submissions is 16 July 2019. 

Read more

Column in Otago Daily Times, 24 June 2019

A clean bill of health. Dr Alexandra Macmillan. Otago Daily Times, 24 June 2019.

Strong legislation on addressing climate change can leave us all better off.

Read article here.


Can what we eat help save the world?

Article by Rebecca Sinclair. Te Puawai: The Professional Update for Registered Nurses, May 2019. Read here.


Sustainable Healthcare Forum 8th May 2019

The 2nd Sustainable Healthcare Forum was organised by OraTaiao: The NZ Climate and Health Council, and the Sustainable Health Sector National Network NZ (SHSNN)

Watch recordings and presentations from the 2nd Sustainable Healthcare in Aotearoa-NZ Forum, Wellington, 8th May 2019

Read more

NZ Herald: 'Show us how it's done' - 22 leading NZ academics who back the School Strike 4 Climate

Article on the School Strikes for Climate with comments by Co-convenors Dr Alex Macmillan and Dr Rhys Jones.

Read here.


Zero Carbon Bill is critical legislation for health, but targets are too little, too late


8 May 2019

Health professionals have offered a mixed response to the Zero Carbon Bill, which was introduced into Parliament today. They applaud its purpose to prevent global warming of more than 1.5 degrees, but say aspects of the bill lack the necessary urgency and accountability.

“The Bill’s targets as they stand today would be too little, too late,” said Dr Rhys Jones, Co-convenor of OraTaiao: NZ Climate and Health Council. “The Zero Carbon Bill is too weak on agricultural emissions which comprise almost half of New Zealand’s total greenhouse gas emissions. We need to see a move away from beef and dairy for both the sake of human and planetary health.”

Read more