Bringing focus to our environmental issues
The environment is seen as a key issue for these elections and local advocacy groups want to help voters understand the issues better before they head to the polls.
Chris Peterson of Sustainable Wairarapa and Forest & Bird said recent catastrophic weather events worldwide and climate change reports here in New Zealand show that these topics are more relevant than ever.
‘‘As reflected in polls and media coverage worldwide - including here in Wairarapa - there is increasing concern around the thorny and deeply complex issues of water quality and climate change.’’
‘‘Many see them as interconnected problems which all developed countries have contributed to over generations through our linear economies and extravagantly consumptive lifestyles,’’ Peterson said
He believes changing those paradigms will be ‘‘difficult and disruptive’’ but there is a realisation that somehow it must be done urgently.
‘‘To that end, leading up to the election, Sustainable Wairarapa and Wairarapa Forest & Bird are jointly promoting three events on these two issues that have implications for our local economy, well-being and way of life,’’ he said.
First up Forest & Bird’s national Freshwater Advocate, Annabeth Cohen, will discuss the Fresh Water Rescue Plan which has support from 16 science, public health, tourism, recreation and environmental organisations. Cohen is speaking at the Copthorne this Thursday, September 7 at 7.30pm.
Next week Roger Blakeley, formerly Secretary for the Environment, and now a Greater Wellington Regional Councillor and elected member of Capital and Coast District Health Board. He will discuss the detailed projections for climate change in the Wairarapa. Blakeley is speaking at the Copthorne on Thursday September 14.
The final event is on Sunday September 17 at 4.30pm at the Regent Theatre in Masterton which is a fundraising screening of Al Gore’s new film, Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power. Tickets $20 and includes drinks and nibbles.
The first two evenings are free, koha accepted. Contacts: Chris Peterson, firstname.lastname@example.org, or Ray Stewart, email@example.com
Roger Blakeley will talk about climate change at the Copthorne on September 14.