Meet Susannah (C) GREENPEACE / Sharomov
Hi, I'm Susannah, a climate campaigner at the Greenpeace NZ office and a campaigner on board the Rainbow Warrior for the 6-week tour.
Kathy has asked me to write my own profile. I protested that I wouldn't be able to write things to make myself look good without sounding like an idiot. She says it's not my job to look good, but rather to take any opportunity I can to bang on about the campaign. So here we go….
I started working at Greenpeace mid 2007, soon after completing a post-grad in Development Studies. My studies got me thinking more and more about the true meaning of "development" and questioning the assumptions behind "sustainable development" models. I came to climate change from a social justice perspective, concerned by the injustices of climate change: while the developed world has been the biggest contributor to greenhouse gas pollution, its impacts are felt more severely in developing countries. The situation we have now is that developed countries - realising that we can't keep increasing emissions, are demanding that developing countries like China not follow the same path of "development" that they themselves took.
Inevitably, it's past and present generations that will be handing over an unhealthy earth to future generations who had no part in creating the mess.
When I started at Greenpeace, the focus of the climate campaign was on the energy sector. The office had recently celebrated winning the campaign against a new coal-fired power station at Marsden B. Our energy campaign successes continued throughout the year, with the announcement of a number of new policies to tackle energy sector emissions and redirect investment into renewables.
Now, we're switching our focus to the agricultural sector, and the change couldn't be more timely. Debate over the environmental impacts of agricultural production, particularly dairying, has really picked up over the last few weeks. And being an election year, it's the perfect time to put pressure on all of the political parties to drop the rhetoric and take some serious action to tackle emissions from NZ's most polluting sector.
I'm really excited about the campaign. If NZ can significantly reduce emissions from the agricultural sector and live up to our clean, green brand, we could lead the way internationally on climate-friendly agriculture. We have an opportunity to punch well above our weight on this one.