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Rally and March to Parliament

Last month 50 Shades of Green organised a rally to Parliament. By all accounts this was a very significant day demonstrating to government that provincial NZ are in unity, and the message to the government was we are not being listened to and we are not happy.
A crowd of around 1200 people joined us at Civic Square and then marched to Parliament. They were very respectful and just wanted to be listened to. Unfortunately Minister Jones and Minister O’Conner never saw the need to either listen or pay respect to the people that had taken a day out of their lives to voice their concerns. Main stream media covered this rally in the usual way of focussing on the ministers and not the issue, however we have had very good coverage from RNZ, dominated talk back the following day, Kerry McIvor on Newstalk ZB lambasted Minister Jones' behaviour.  Top that with with several news blogs, editorials opinion pieces and live streams keeping the issue alive. This message is getting through, we are putting pressure on and we are making headway.

What next for 50 Shades of Green?
We will continue the fight for provincial NZ. We are working on stories to be released that once again prove that this strategy the Government is going down is nothing but an expensive feel good folly that will likely bankrupt our country. We continue to be heard on air and also lobbying the ministers when and where we can. Our aim is to inform the public that the Zero Carbon Bill and the ETS scheme will be paid for by the tax payer.
What can you do?
This is an expensive game and to carry the fight on we need resources. Every donation big or small is essential. To date we have spent over $100,000 raising awareness of the issues at hand and our resources are dwindling so we need an input. I challenge everyone reading this letter to drop us what you can afford.

In the pipeline

Meeting with Minister James Shaw on the 17th of this month.  We were disappointed that both Minster O’Connor and Minister Jones failed to recognise the opportunity in front of them.  The ministers failed to listen to the very real concerns and issues farmers have with policies affecting their lives and Minister Jones demonstrated a complete disregard for our democratic right to deliver our message.  Farmers are frustrated, angry and uncertain because they are not listened to, are treated with disdain, and our achievements and science ignored, even though we are a critical part of the economy.

We are meeting with Minister Shaw and hope to discuss our concerns which include:

1.     Carbon offsetting with trees is a folly, it will not achieve any change in behaviour. Simply put: laundering emissions.
2.     The potential for adverse environmental outcomes is extremely high despite what the forestry sector states.
3.     The social cost of significant land use change will impact initially in concentrated areas (Wairoa, Tararua, Northland, Ruepehu) before becoming widespread   
4.     The economic cost will be borne by the provinces initially and then ultimately the wider economy.  The major benefit will be a ‘feel good’ factor for some people, at least until the effects of the policy start to bite
5.     The messaging being sent by these policies by the government  is incentivising the acceleration of afforestation by carbon investors with no lasting benefit - The only winners will be the investment sector
6.     NZ will be the big loser, socially, economically and environmentally
7.     Lack of monitoring

 We want to be constructive, we are passionate about NZ and it is extremely concerning not to be taken seriously, for the government to constantly quote out of date data figures regarding blanket afforestation, to ignore it’s not only applications coming through the OIO that are resulting in the perverse outcomes of policy.   As far back as June this year, two mayors, and one rural farm consultant, all of whom know their patch pretty well raised their concerns, and they, in a snapshot in time gave a more accurate account than slowly flowing data that doesn’t capture the whole picture

Te Uru Rakau

We hope all those concerned about our landscape can take the time to respond to this opportunity.  They are asking you to:

Tell us what you think about our forest strategy

We’re working with as many groups as possible to develop the forest strategy for Aotearoa New Zealand, and we would like to know what you think. Tell us what a forest strategy means to you, why it matters, and what a great forest sector would look like.
Te Uru Rakau have been hosting workshops in selected regions with a broad range of stakeholders. The workshops aim to be collaborative and interactive to understand the issues and potential solutions from a range of perspectives, if you get the opportunity to register for a workshop, we'd be keen to hear from you
A forestry workshop is scheduled in Gisborne tomorrow.  Unfortunately we have other commitments but do have supporters attending.  

Plans afoot for 2020

Plans are in place to continue our advocacy and help broader New Zealand understand what our planned changed landscape will bring with it, and it's impacts on New Zealand households.

We have and continue to connect with influential New Zealands who support us, and our social media presence continues to grow. Our website crashed the day of the rally, that was encouraging, our amateur attempts to facebook live the rally had over 30,000 views on the day. 

Speeches and video from the rally 
The speeches were a hit!.  Some of these have been shared many many times.  If you haven't already read or heard these speeches and would like to they can be found here on the website. 
We owe huge thanks to those who spoke on the day 
Mike Butterick
Eve McCallum
Andrew Hollis
Kerry Worshop (who also presented the afforestation petition to Todd Muller, signed by 10,000 + )
Sully Alsop
Lincoln Grant, and last but not least
The huntaways, who were a hit with the crowd as we walked to parliament    Besides facilitating a time for people to come together to express their views, the other main aim  was to get major visiblity on the day We certainly achieved that

We still need your help to continue and ask for your financial support.  Thank you to those who have already generously donated with either cash donations or donations in kind.  While we have a reasonable profile in the affected areas, there is much more work to do across New Zealand, believe it or not, some New Zealander's are blissfully unaware of our work and even us!! Hard to believe. 

Links  to our support page where you can donate online or find an address to mail a cheque!  All forms welcome

In the meantime HAPPPY CHRISTMAS and see you in 2020!  Team GreenOffice Humour for the president


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