30 Nov 2010

NZ government urged to push for climate adaptation

7:30 pm on 30 November 2010

A New Zealand politician of Pacific descent says his government needs to take a stronger stand at the climate change talks in Mexico.

The environment spokesperson for the opposition New Zealand Labour Party, and a member of the party's Pacific caucus, Charles Chauvel, says expectations are low for the United Nations conference.

But Mr Chauvel, who is of Tahitian descent, says there could be real progress on making adaptation funding available from developed countries to countries experiencing the effects of climate change.

He says this could benefit the Pacific, but the New Zealand government has not taken a strong enough stand on it

"New Zealand should be one of the developed countries that's a leader in terms of getting that fund going. It should be a leader in terms of not just raiding its aid budget for those funds but coming up with new money for that purpose."

Charles Chauvel says New Zealand should be encouraging other developed countries to contribute to an adaptation fund, but has become a facilitator for compromise.