25 Jan 2010

Call for Maori to find own solutions to climate change

4:23 pm on 25 January 2010

An activist and independent film-maker says Maori need to find solutions for climate change, rather than rely on politicians.

Mike Smith, from Cutting Edge Productions, says the lack of consensus at the international summit in Copenhagen in December shows that communities need to get involved and come up with their own answers.

Mr Smith is attending Ratana Church celebrations near Whanganui to get the Maori perspective on climate change.

"We don't believe that world governments, or indeed the New Zealand Government, is going to react in the right sort of way and be able to prevent it - and I guess that's been demonstrated by the collapse of the talks at Copenhagen.

"We think that local communities need really to take the responsibility and to own their own solutions when it comes to climate change."

Members want Ratana date changed

Young members of the Ratana Church are urging elders to change the date of the Ratana celebrations.

The celebrations are held every year in January at the Ratana pa near Whanganui, but a shift to November is being considered.

The celebrations honour the birthday of the church's founder, Tahupotiki Wiremu Ratana, on 25 January.

But some argue that the date that he became a prophet is the more appropriate to celebrate.

Tainui Pene believes the celebrations should be rescheduled to 8 November. However, Ratana historian Kelly Pene says January is more convenient for people.