“It looks like there are good investments on the table in the Government’s Covid recovery infrastructure announcement today. But the devil will be in the detail, which has not yet been made available. It remains to be seen whether the Government will make the most of the once-in-a-generation opportunity that the Covid recovery provides us to build back better,” said Amanda Larsson, Climate & Energy Campaigner.
“Today’s announcement suggests there will be investments in active and public transport, as well as projects aiming to shift New Zealand to cleaner energy, which we welcome. It’s also good to see that building resilience to climate change and restoring nature are a focus.
“But it’s difficult, at this stage, to judge the overall impact of the $3 billion infrastructure package on the climate and the environment. Roading projects, which we know increase carbon emissions, are on the list. We’re also disappointed that there is no mention of infrastructure projects that will help New Zealand’s biggest polluter, intensive dairying, shift towards more plant-based regenerative farming.
“Of the projects that have been made public today, there is little to suggest that the Government is using this moment to invest in the kind of transformation that will deliver a stable and resilient future for our children. The Government needs to be bold and courageous at this important moment in our history.
“We have a huge opportunity in front of us right now and there are some clear choices to make. We must build rail, not roads, and we must invest in renewable energy, not fossil fuels. We must invest in new plant-based food manufacturing, and diversified food, fibre and timber processing facilities to support the shift to regenerative farming.”