Federated Farmers: sticking their heads in the soil?

Dryland farmingFederated Farmers says farmers don’t need to worry about the causes of climate change, they only need to cope with the impacts. Feds President William Rolleston says they have “no position” on whether mankind is influencing global warming, and say that looking at the causes is not that helpful. No position?

“We [farmers] need to basically adjust to the realities that are being dealt to us, and why it may or may not be happening isn’t really as important, as actually being prepared for what we actually do get dealt,” their “climate change spokesman” Anders Crofoot told Radio New Zealand today.

You can’t have “no position” on the climate science — it’s like telling your bank manager you have “no position” on your finances, despite the numbers being there for all to see. I’m calling it climate denial. I’ll come back to that later, but let’s look at WHY they’re saying that.  If you were to take a position, that is, agree that climate change is real and caused by humans, you’d have to act. You’d think.

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Why is Federated Farmers promoting climate denial during a major drought?

The man who believes Obama's birth certificate was faked, promoted by Federated Farmers.
The man who believes Obama’s birth certificate was faked, promoted by Federated Farmers.

You’d think, in the middle of the worst drought in 70 years, with farmers in crisis, that their national political body might be thinking about  the big picture of climate change and how best to communicate that to farmers.

In Marlborough, where the drought is hitting hard, the local Federated Farmers chapter is sponsoring a talk by crank Lord Monckton.   I asked Conor English, Federated Farmers CEO,  what he thought about this and he said:

“We have 24 Provinces and they get all sorts of speakers on all sorts of things. We simply don’t know.”

OK, one renegade chapter. Fair enough. I’m sure Top of the South farmers will be relieved to know climate change isn’t real.

But on March 8, Federated Farmers’ “Friday Flash” weekly email bulletin was mailed to members right around the country, including a full-on promotion, with dates, links, and phone numbers of Monckton’s wander around the country.  The item even questioned the science of global warming, running out the tired old denier “global warming has stalled for 16 years” argument (rebutted here) that is central to Monckton’s theories.

So I went back to Mr English to ask how they could be promoting Monckton’s visit, right in the middle of this terrible drought, the type of  drought farmers are expected to get a lot more of as climate impacts kick in. Continue reading “Why is Federated Farmers promoting climate denial during a major drought?”

More Monckton madness: Agenda 21 means concentration camps for all

Christopher “I could be the next Pope”1 Monckton is no stranger to outrageous overstatement, but on his current tour of Australia he’s really been pushing the boat far out onto the sea of craziness that passes for his political philosophy. As well as his usual climate nonsense, he’s been telling his Aussie audiences all about a new bugaboo: Agenda 21 – the new face of fascism, apparently. This is how he describes it in an article titled Agenda 21’s Terror Down Under:

…the U.N.’s anti-irrigation, anti-pesticide, anti-farming, anti-business, anti-environment, anti-population, anti-human, anti-Western, anti-capitalist, anti-everything Agenda 21 program…

But what does this mean for humanity? UN-created concentration camps, as Monckton explained to an Aussie audience last month…

“The remaining few areas where the last few humans allowed to exist in America in what they call human settlement zones — and what we would call concentration camps — all ideas of freedom and individual liberty will have gone if this is implemented…”

Agenda 21 is a terrible UN plot that has got it in for everything we hold dear, as this slide from one of his talks handily summarises.

Continue reading “More Monckton madness: Agenda 21 means concentration camps for all”

  1. Seriously, he did write that — and “in one vital respect I am an eminently suitable candidate”, here. []

Stating the pleading obvious (big dairy and the ETS review)

A commenter or two has started to hit back at the NZ Emissions Trading Scheme Review 2011 and the New Zealand Herald editorial Farmers must share burden on emissions for saying that there should be no further delay of the 2015 date when agricultural emissions will enter the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme (NZ ETS). The Herald editorial had the temerity to comment on the government’s “extraordinary generosity to farmers” in changing the “modest impositions” of the NZ ETS on agriculture so that it “will become truly timorous”.

David Anderson, who is described as a former editor of Rural News and a communications consultant in “teh” (sic) agribusiness sector, has just had an opinion piece in the Herald (27 September) arguing for further delaying agriculture’s entry into the NZ ETS.

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SOS roadshow comes to Hamilton

I attended the Hamilton stop of the Saunders/Oram/Salinger roadshow yesterday. It was a very worthwhile occasion.  Around seventy present and the speakers introduced by the Chair of the Regional Council, himself a farmer.  Caroline Saunders was unfortunately unable to be present, but Rod Oram included her material in his talk. I won’t try to cover what he and Jim Salinger had to say in any detail, as I simply sat back and enjoyed the expertise they displayed without any thought of reporting. But Gareth wondered about a short review, so in broadest outline from an untrustworthy ageing memory… Continue reading “SOS roadshow comes to Hamilton”