Wednesday, May 07, 2008
Terry Dunleavy considers New Zealand’s fate should it pursue carbon reduction:
New Zealand produces about 0.2 per cent of the world’s man-made production of CO2. Even if NZ totally eliminated CO2 emissions, the difference would be to reduce the annual rate of increase in the atmosphere by 0.2 per cent of 1.5ppm, equalling 0.003ppm which equals 3 parts per billion. This of course is a far lower amount than can even be detected.
Are we seriously going to shatter our economy, restrict ourselves to a fragile electricity system, cost every family in the land $1000 to $1500 per year in electricity expenses alone, seriously damage our agriculture industry, etc. by trying to reduce New Zealand’s minuscule CO2 contribution?
But it’s worse than that. The Government’s stated goal is to reduce our CO2 emissions by 20 per cent. So if we were to succeed in this, and thereby reduce New Zealand’s 3 parts per billion contribution to 20 per cent of this figure, the reduction in global CO2 arising from our action would amount to 0.6 parts per billion per year.
Thus will the planet be saved.