Frustration and Failure: The Zero Carbon Bill and the Treaty of Waitangi
37 Pages Posted: 28 May 2020
Date Written: September 2, 2019
The Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill fails to honour obligations under the Treaty of Waitangi/te Tiriti o Waitangi adequately, in particular the principles of partnership and active protection. The current Treaty clause circumscribes when Māori will be relevant in the decision-making process and implicitly considers Māori as one stakeholder among many others. This approach silences the unique worldview of tikanga Māori and the ability for Māori to practice kaitiakitanga, as well as ignoring the particular vulnerability of Māori and taonga to consequences of climate change. This paper discusses these shortcomings in light of the principles of partnership and active protection. It argues that both procedural and substantive reform is needed if the Bill is to comply adequately with obligations under the Treaty. The possible suggestions aim to give effect to partnership by incorporating tikanga Māori into the decision-making process, and to active protection by granting relevant Māori the ability to exercise kaitiakitanga.
Keywords: tikanga maori, kaitiakitanga, treaty principles the climate change response (zero carbon) amendment bill
JEL Classification: K00, K32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation