Looking back | Presidents note

It has been a hectic time since our first meeting of concerned people was held on April 24th this year in the Wairarapa. The  committee have done an awesome job of educating and driving awareness nationally around the changes of landuse and its impact on farming, farming communities and service providers to the public and farmers alike.   

We have made ground and achieved a staggering amount of headway, have met with many ministers & been to parliament several times. It is obvious that there is becoming quite a split in the corridors of parliament on the best way forward for the ZCB. In saying that the last thing we should do is take the throttle off now, we are so close to obtaining our goal which is for farmers to be able to mitigate their own emissions and have the methane emissions level target reduced.  In our view this is a minimum and the ultimate goal is to have this bill thrown out in it’s current form.

We initially thought this may have been an unrealistic goal, but now as we get closer to the select committee releasing their findings we are getting the feeling our ultimate goal may be more achievable.

However to do this we need to continue the fight and keep 50 Shades of Green at the forefront in people's minds, especially with the urban sector who still need messaging to help them understand the drastic unforeseen consequences of the ZCB to the entire country. To help us please spread the word and if you can support us with a donation then that will ensure we have the resources to continue this battle on your behalf.


Andy Scott, President 50 Shades of Green



Campaign contributions can be made at

Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill

50 Shades of Green submission to the Environment Committee

Presented on our behalf by Tony O'Boyle.  Supported by Andy Scott, James Cates, Rob Dick and Gwyn Jones.
Our view is, we feel we had a good hearing on Monday 26th August presenting to the select committee panel. The panel consisted of Chlöe Swarbrick,  Greg O'Connor, Erica Sanford and chaired by Nathan Guy.  This was not the full panel due to logistics of accommodating all the requests for oral submissons. c13,000 submissions and c1300 oral submission requests.

Our submission
We introduced ourselves and the people and communities who are behind the advocacy group of 50 Shades of Green.  We detailed the process we undertook, encouraging our 
supporters and followers to our website with links to lodge a submission to the environment committee with views on the  ZCB.  The panel noted it was good to  hear from farmers. 
Unlike some other presentations, ours was directly related to the draft bill itself, it became obvious during the course of the day that submitters who didn’t speak directly to the bill or wobbled off track didn’t in turn attract questions from the committee
We asserted that we are not climate change deniers yet can not support the bill in it’s current form
We explained the very architecture of it (planting off land for offsetting by Co2 emitters as one example) is causing huge social inequity and unintended consequences
We were heartened by the engagement, quality of questions and enquiry from the panel 
Immediately after our submission Chlöe Swarbrick followed our group out, requesting email contact and as a result of her subsequent email later that same day, we are grateful she is keen to engage  with  our community in trying to understand the issues at a more grandeur level than can be achieved in 7 minutes at select committee.  So all in all folks we believe we got cut through on your behalf.
Interestingly another submitter from Wellington area mentioned that things need to change but would not like to see the whole of NZ planted in pine trees:  further evidence of our messaging at work and why we aim to continue, with your support to keep our advertising going, particularly in metropolitan New Zealand.
Alarmingly there are an overwhelming number of submitters with no link to the land yet have strong non evidenced views on how it should be used.  
We all need to step up, don’t leave it to others.  Contact your politician or regional council at every chance, its our best bet at influencing the policy, hit them with  rational arguments balanced against your passion,  love and concern for the provinces.   It's very rewarding to have your voice heard and know you are doing your bit.   

Ms  Swarbrick was explicit in accepting so far, the approach hasn't taken everyone along  asking 'What does rural NZ look like in 2050?"

What really happens in the shadows?


In one submission we heard the claim carbon farming is not planting on productive land.   

"We are very careful about where and how we plant our trees, we do not plant on quality farmland, instead we only plant on grade 6,7,8 land. That is the poor quality land, that is the land with no other productive purpose, if we end up with some quality land in our programme we sell this back to the community, we also provide options and income for farmers, we have a product that enables them to generate long term income from unproductive parts of their farms"  Matt Walsh, Managing Director says the trees his company plants are not cut down they left to soak up Co2 and he welcomes the ZCB.

A direct quote from NZ Carbon Farming  and one we think is expedient with the truth.  Certainly the response from our followers and the photos we have seen indicates this claim needs challenging and we wrote to Matt week before last, but have not had a response as yet.  Our view is, if their claim is reality we applaud it.  If not, and more importantly, who is monitoring this stuff? 

Thanks to Abraham Shearing we ran this press ad

Help us continue to amplify our voice. 

Maintaining our profile, talking to Urban New Zealand is crucial along with a continued connection with our support base using our social networks to keep us all connected and informed. .

Our big milestone of presenting to the select committee is done and dusted, thanks to all who also submitted.  Our focus now moves to working with decision makers wherever we can.

We often get asked about a march on parliament, and we don't discount that.  A decision about this will be made once the bill is read and we understand those outcomes. 

If you are passionate about our future, please support our cause with a donation. The donations to date have been fantastic, well spent, basically on ads to get our message out.  Yes, we are still all volunteers dedicated to this cause.    We need to bridge the gap with people who have  forgotten farmland is central to producing food, and a NZ covered in pine for a short term fix is not a good outcome for any of us.  Perception drives policy and why we focus on reminding people, not all trees are equal.
Donations can be made via our website,    

Other ways you can support our cause.  
  • Approach your local ag service suppliers and encourage them to get behind 50ShadesofGreen, this is going to affect their business as well.
  • We have signage files we can send you have printed and installed.
  • Contact your local council and/or politician. Express your views and find out their views   Contact details for your local MP can be found here
  • Letters to the editor
  • Talk to your local community
  • Join our Facebook group and spread the word to family and friends
As always,  massive thanks to everyone. Ka kite anō au i a koutou

For more information
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