Category Archives: Environment & Resources

Notes to Select Committee Considering the Zero Carbon Bill

Presentation on 26 August, 2019. The full submission is here. Summary 1. Climate change and sea level rising is one of the greatest challenges the world faces. 2. New Zealand should play its part in the world’s effort to restrain greenhouse gas emissions. 3. I broadly endorse the intention of the Climate Change Response (Zero…
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Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill

Submission to Select Committee reviewing the bill     July 2019                                                                                                             Fundamental Recommendation That the 2050 target in the legislation be defined in terms of ‘net’ methane emissions rather than ‘gross’ methane emissions. Proposed Amendment That all references to biogenic methane emissions in Clause 5O be deleted. In particular the current proposed clause 5O 5O Target…
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NEW ZEALAND’S METHANE CLOUD

Summary:. Methane (CH4) is a greenhouse gas. Some methane comes from atmospheric carbon-dioxide which is fixed in grass, eaten by livestock, belched into the atmosphere and eventually returns to atmospheric carbon-dioxide. Before it breaks down, the methane molecules form a ‘cloud’ in the atmosphere which adds to global warming at a much higher rate per…
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UNFINISHED BUSINESS

Paper to the Fabian Society, 12 October, 2016   While we continue to chew over the carcass of the Fourth Labour Government – the Lange-Douglas one – we pay little attention to the subsequent Fifth Labour Government. Yet the Clark-Cullen one is greatly shaping the current Labour Opposition and the current National Government. It will,…
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HOW SUSTAINABLE IS NEW ZEALAND?

One of the biggest issues missed during the election campaign was the sustainability of National’s economic, environmental and even social policies. So what do you do if the government’s not thinking long-term?   Pundit: 29 September, 2014.   Keywords: Environment & Resources;  Macroeconomics & Money; Political Economy & History; Social Policy;   Behavioural economics is…
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Business of Office

It’s much easier to be environmentally pure in opposition than in government.   Listener: 27 March, 2014   Keywords: Environment & Resources; Political Economy & History;   Last year, a blogger argued that the Green Party did not need to engage with business interests while in opposition since whatever it did, it would win no…
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Writings on Earthquakes (Index)

This index, first compiled in January 2013 and subsequently updated, is a list of article on the website which have a substantial content about earthquakes and other natural calamities. They were not a focus until the Canterbury Earthquakes, which I began writing about as “Listener” columns to illustrate general issues. However, they are acquiring a…
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The Too Hard Basket

THE TOO HARD BASKET Listener: 19 January, 2012. Keywords: Environment & Resources; Distributional Economics;  Macroeconomics & Money; Political Economy & History;  Regulation & Taxation;  Social Policy; Every government has issues it hopes will go away. They don’t. Here are some for our one. Our Emissions Trading Scheme is looking like a dog’s breakfast, and/or something…
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Infrastructure Problems in New Zealand

Listener: 17 September, 2011. Keywords: Environment & Resources;  Governance; The cinema may give a good idea about the sewers of Paris and Vienna, but I have little idea what goes on underneath the city in which I live. I just pull the plug or chain and the waste magically disappears. For the citizens of Christchurch,…
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Cap in Hand

Making the emissions trading scheme “affordable” may  hit future generations hard.   Listener: 10 October, 2009.   Keywords: Environment & Resources;   Distributional Economics;   Global warming is a consequence of a market failure: polluters emit chemicals without having to pay the price of their emissions. Some sort of taxation regime would no doubt make the…
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The Commercial Value Of Taniwha Springs

Report prepared for Te Maru o Ngati Rangiwewehi (June 2009) Keywords: Environment & Resources;  Maori; Introduction My name is Brian Henry Easton. I am an independent scholar with particular expertise in economics, social statistics and public policy analysis. I hold a D.Sc. from the University of Canterbury and am an adjunct professor at the Institute…
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Costal Occupancy Charges.

Statement of Evidence of Brian Henry Easton in an Appeal Under The Resource Management Act 1991 between Margaret and  Stephen Thompson Marlborough District Council (Env-2006-WLG-000038)   Keywords: Environment & Resources;  Regulation & Taxation;   Introduction   I.                    My name is Brian Henry Easton. I am an independent scholar with particular expertise in economics, social statistics…
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Does Material Affluence Boost Wellbeing?

Revised version of the paper to 7X7 seminar, Wellington, 22 July, 2008   Keywords: History of Ideas, Methodology & Philosophy;   What is the purpose of it all? For 200 years economists have assumed that the more material goods the better, and the purpose of the economy was to supply those goods. The notion that…
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