The law won

hot-topic-cover.jpg The LexisNexis legal symposium on climate change was an interesting couple of days. Some excellent presentations – including a particularly fine exposition of the science of climate from NIWA’s Katja Riedel, and a very good summary of the post-Kyoto options from Jonathon Boston. Peter Weir from the Forest Owners Association presented a characteristically direct assessment of the role of forestry in the ETS – and demonstrated just how challenging the business of forestry has just become. My own short talk covered New Zealand’s vulnerabilities to climate change, looking at potential winners in losers in a world where there’s a risk that rapid climate change is happening now. [PDF here – 4.5MB] One take home message: do not expect the price of carbon to go down. I’m not sure that investing in carbon is exactly a safe haven for retirement funds, but if I were a Treasury official considering whether to hedge against NZ’s 2008-12 Kyoto CP1 liability, I’d be buying now.

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