Ten questions for local government candidates on climate action

The Common Climate Network has developed a questionnaire for candidates this election, and it is being used by groups throughout New Zealand. The answers will be used to score candidates on their views on climate action and the results will be available by 22 September, when the voting papers are sent out.

We’ve had a few inquiries asking what the questions are for voters to use at candidate meetings. So here are the high-level themes in case they are useful for you. We would really welcome your feedback, and are also looking for guest blogs about your experiences and issues in your regions.

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Help focus attention on climate action in the 2019 local body elections

Working with Generation Zero, the Common Climate Network has developed a questionnaire that provides a scorecard on each candidates’ views on climate action   We are making it available to any organisation that wants to use it to survey the views of candidates in their local council elections.  Find out if your region is already covered.

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Media release: Candidates under the microscope on climate this election

Groups pushing for urgent action on climate change will post an online scorecard to reveal local body candidates’ views on the issue.

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Vote for councillors who care – local body elections 2019 

Local body elections are coming up in October, and this is your chance to make sure councils take action on climate change. We can do so much in the next three years with strong effective councils willing to take action on climate change.

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What can I do about climate change?

Back in June, one of our team went to a screening of Fools and Dreamers, by Happen Films, the story of one man’s vision to regenerate the Hinewai Nature Reserve, on Canterbury’s Banks Peninsula. The film has now been released on YouTube and you can watch it on their site.

Audiences at the Q&A in Wellington were asking what else they can do to take action on climate change. We have seen this at any number of other events when climate change is discussed – people always want to know what they can do to make a difference.

So we have put together some slides that might help. You are welcome to re-use these as you see fit, please just attribute them to the Common Climate Network and include a link to this website.

You can download the slides and see the notes for more information.

Get in touch if you have got any suggestions or additions.

More ideas here: https://www.52climateactions.com/

Ordinary conversations

Guest article by Caroline Eddy

Over the course of the last year the news about climate change seemed to get exponentially worse. Despite years of international agreements designed to limit our greenhouse gas emissions, they had in fact continued to rise, as had the frequency of dire reports being issued by the UN and others. It seemed like high time to pay more attention.

As I started to become better informed, one of the first things that occurred to me was that strangely few people around me were talking about this enormous and urgent problem.  

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Transition to a low carbon future… how will New Zealand do it?

Guest article by Suraya Casey.

Thanks to my friend at Access Radio Taranaki who couldn’t use her ticket, I was lucky to spend 9 and 10 May 2019 at the Just Transition Summit. It was a gathering of politicians, union, business and community leaders to talk about how New Zealand can meet its greenhouse gas emission reduction targets by 2050, in a way that is raises standards of work and life among everyone in our communities.

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The cure for climate grief… is action

Last night I got together with a few people who are concerned about climate change and want to take action.

This all started with our own sense of climate grief and sense of loss at what is happening to the natural world. For me, it was watching an episode of Blue Planet with polar bears struggling to find food.

It will be different for the others, but we’ve all had our own tipping point, when we realise that change is happening now, not at some future point, and there is an urgent need to take action.

Alayna said “My nana used to say, if you feel blue, go for a walk”. And Jo chimed in with “You can’t feel sad if you hum”. As we all know, nanas are the ultimate source of wisdom. So action is the antidote for us. And perhaps, from time to time, humming.

Around the table we have diverse skills, in communications, climate science and organisation. We all have networks and relationships, and above all the motivation to act. We thrashed out some ideas for how we could create the right environment for local governments to take climate action. Watch this space for details.

If you want to get involved, follow the Common Climate Facebook page and join the Climate Change Communicators group.

As Margaret Mead put it so well, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world… It is the only thing that ever has.”

Thanks to our mates at the Radiant Earth Foundation for the image above.