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Consideration of the climate crisis will be front and center in all of New Zealand's major policy decisions. The new rule means that any new proposal before the government that aims either to reduce emissions or has a collateral damage effect of raising emissions will need to go through a climate-impact assessment before it can be considered, according to The Guardian.
New Zealand politicians reached across the aisle this week to pass a historic bill aiming to get the country to zero emissions by 2050 and fulfill its commitments under the Paris agreement.
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New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern had strong words for Australia as both nations attend the Pacific Islands Forum in Tuvalu this week. The climate crisis is shaping up to be a major issue at the 18-nation forum, as some members want Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison to sign a declaration agreeing to a global phase-out of coal, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.
The Crown Minerals (Petroleum) Amendment Act passed its third reading in Parliament on Wednesday with 63 votes in favor and 55 against, New Zealand Herald reported.
"The whole world is going in this direction," Ardern said. "We all signed up to the Paris agreement that said we're moving towards carbon-neutrality, and now we need to act on it."
New Zealand's next prime minister Jacinda Ardern has set ambitious environmental policies to confront a warming planet.
"I do anticipate that we will be a government, as I said during the campaign, that will be absolutely focused on the challenge of climate change," said Ardern, whose Labour party has signed a coalition agreement with the New Zealand First party.