Hansard (debates)


Hide, Rodney: Climate Change (Emissions Trading and Renewable Preference) Bill — In Committee


RODNEY HIDE (Leader—ACT) : I think I will be the only person speaking in this debate who has any qualifications in environmental science. It is not that that should count, but I think it is significant for what I am about to say—that is, that the entire climate change and global warming hypothesis is a hoax, that the data and the hypothesis do not hold together, that Al Gore is a phoney and a fraud on this issue, and that the emissions trading scheme is a worldwide scam and a swindle.

Enacting this legislation will cost New Zealanders dear—that is the point of it—and it will drive up the cost of basic goods and services for New Zealanders, probably by at least $500 or $600 a year. It will put businesses in New Zealand out of business, and it will put farmers off their farms, and it will do all that for no impact on world weather, for no environmental gain, and for no conceivable advantage to New Zealand or to the world. Yes, it is bad that we are rushing this legislation through in the dying days of a teetering regime, propped up by a Minister of Foreign Affairs who is under investigation for serious and complex fraud. That is bad, but it is the impact that this legislation and this policy will have on New Zealanders that is so truly shocking.

All we have in this is a computer model. That is notoriously difficult, because the answers are written in the assumptions. Let me give members just one example. The problem for the first two reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change was what was called the medieval warming period, whereby a thousand years ago the Earth was warmer than it is now. Then, magically, an obscure physicist in the US came up with a new bit of analysis—the “hockey stick” model—that showed world temperature to be flat and then rising dramatically as the world became industrialised. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change grabbed this, put it on the front of its document, and repeated it five times.

Researchers all around the world were puzzled by this, because it did not fit any of their data. Eventually they got hold of that computer model and they discovered that any numbers fed into that model would produce the “hockey stick”. We could take the Wellington telephone directory, feed it into the model that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change used in 2001, and we would get the “hockey stick”, which saw the world and policy makers running scared, and which Al Gore based his movie on. The science was rubbish, because a computer model is not science. Science is about theories, hypotheses, and the testing of those against the facts. That is not what has happened in the basic science here.

That is bad enough, but what is worse is the policy rationale underpinning this legislation. The Minister would come before the Finance and Expenditure Committee and talk about a “cap and trade”, but when asked, he would say: “Yes, there is no cap.” We are creating a market in hot air, without any quantified amount.

The CHAIRPERSON (Hon Marian Hobbs): Before I call the next speaker, I just say to members that we have had four speeches and we really have not been talking about the bill. This is the Committee stage. It is not a discussion on climate change per se. It is about Part 1 of the bill.