Media Releases


Increasing worries around drinking water nitrate levels and cancer risks, says OraTaiao

OraTaiao: NZ Climate and Health Council strongly supports the recent call by Forest & Bird, Greenpeace, the Environmental Defence Society, and Choose Clean Water urging Government to limit freshwater nitrate levels to less than 1mg/L.

"This is a perfect example of where public health, ecological, and climate concerns overlap," says Dermot Coffey, Co-convenor of OraTaiao, "and where setting and achieving a safe limit on nitrate levels will benefit all three simultaneously."

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New Zealand ranked zero in damning global climate health scorecard

MEDIA STATEMENT8 July 2021

Global Climate Health Alliance rating of NZ NDC commitment

“New Zealand’s ranking of zero points on the Global Climate and Health Alliance health scorecard for climate commitments sounds the siren for urgent action,” says Dr Dermot Coffey, Co-convenor of OraTaiao: NZ Climate and Health Council. The GCHA today publicly released the climate health scorecard for the nationally determined contributions (NDCs) of 66 countries with NZ sharing bottom place with just 3 others.  

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OraTaiao calls for healthier government response to climate advice

Christchurch, 9 June 2021 -- Responding to today’s release of the Climate Change Commission’s advice to the government on New Zealand’s climate ambitions, OraTaiao called on Minister for Climate Change Hon. James Shaw to safeguard the health of Aotearoa and step up to our fair share when the world meets in Glasgow this November to keep human-adaptable 1.5 degrees warming within reach.

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OraTaiao appeals to Government: plate up for climate change and health

MEDIA STATEMENT, 28 May, 2021
Since Government buys what thousands of us eat daily in New Zealand, ‘buying healthy’ has long been an immediately available yet overlooked step towards addressing climate and health-induced inequities according to OraTaiao: New Zealand Climate and Health Council and they are challenging Government to act now to remedy this.  
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OraTaiao underwhelmed by the Budget’s support for climate or health

Simply going by the 2021 Budget, one wouldn’t know our government has declared a climate emergency; rather it was another disappointment in a long string of underwhelming Budgets, said Dr Dermot Coffey, Co-convenor, OraTaiao: NZ Climate and Health Council.

 

Please read OraTaiao's response to the 2021 Budget.

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Climate change is claiming lives – Lancet Countdown 2020 report

MEDIA STATEMENT, 3 December 2020

Evidence from the latest Lancet Countdown report show that climate change induced shocks such as wildfires and heat waves are claiming lives now and unless urgent action is taken then health impacts will worsen, so it is timely our government has just declared a climate emergency, said Dr Dermot Coffey, Co-convenor, OraTaiao: NZ Climate and Health Council.

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Mandate needed to end District Health Boards’ climate pollution

MEDIA STATEMENT9 October 2020

Following the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) announcement that it will commit to net zero carbon emissions by 2040, NZ health professionals are asking the NZ Government to require emissions reductions in our health sector in Aotearoa NZ.

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Election 2020: The big climate hole

MEDIA RELEASE, 28 September 2020

Health professionals have expressed surprise at the silence around this century’s biggest population health threat in the 2020 general election.

“We have found that even some of our major parties have either no plans on what to do about climate change or have ones which are actively harmful. Having no good climate policy today is a bit like having no public health policy during a pandemic,” said Dr Dermot Coffey, Co-convenor of OraTaiao: NZ Climate & Health Council, on releasing an election scorecard today. 

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Budget 2020 must tackle climate crisis say health organisations

MEDIA RELEASE, 3 May 2020

Leading NZ health professional organisations have written to the Government asking them to prioritise Budget 2020 funding for a just transition to a climate-resilient, sustainable and low-emissions economy.

The letter, led by OraTaiao: NZ Climate & Health Council, was sent to the Minister and Associate Ministers of Finance on Sunday 3 May, and urges the Government to heed health advice that has for many years been warning of the serious health threat posed by the climate crisis.

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Government spend now must do ‘triple duty’ for people, planet and prosperity

MEDIA STATEMENT15 April 2020

Health professionals are calling for the government’s economic stimulus to do triple duty for people, planet and prosperity.

“We can’t return to business as usual. We need a new framework to guide public investment. As the Government invests to get the economy going after lockdown we must ensure this public money is well spent and has a long term benefit for people, planet and prosperity,” said Dr. Alex Macmillan, Co-convenor, OraTaiao: NZ Climate & Health Council.

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