Phil Goff to prioritise clean transport, environment, climate change in next term
Phil Goff launched his re-election campaign today, with protecting Auckland’s environment and tackling climate change key priorities for his second term.
Mr Goff also emphasised that this is a mayoral election of starkly contrasting values and visions for Auckland’s future.
The Mayor’s first term included record levels of investment to protect and enhance Auckland’s environment. This included work to dramatically reduce sewage overflows within a decade as opposed to 30 years, a massive increase in funds to stop kauri dieback spreading and pest eradication. He also surpassed a pledge to plant a million native trees. The Mayor also promised to lead a campaign to ban plastic bags, which he advocated for, and the Government enacted last month.
“Aucklanders have a clear choice this mayoral election,” said Phil Goff. “As Mayor, I will work to safeguard our children’s future and our city’s environment and move Auckland towards being a 21st- century city that competes with the best cities globally.
“My opponent is stuck in the past, and has no answers for the congestion, pollution and climate change challenges Auckland faces now.
“Spending more time in traffic jams while our city chokes on petrol fumes is not the future Aucklanders want, but that will be the result if my opponent is elected.
“A Tamihere mayoralty will set Auckland back; my next term will take Auckland forward.
“I’m really proud of my record to protect our environment over the last three years, but there is so much more to be done so we can leave our children and grandchildren a decent legacy.
“Part of leaving a good legacy for future generations is acting on our most pressing issue – climate change. Transport emissions make up 47% of overall carbon emissions. That has to change, and we need to take responsibly and lead that change.
“Contrary to what my opponent says, there is no war on cars, but there is one on the congestion that hinders people from getting around the city, and on pollution.
“While I am pleased we are planting over 2.5 million trees in six years, we can’t just plant our way out of climate change – we need to reduce emissions.
“Council must take the lead. This is why, under my mayoralty, from next year Council will purchase only electric and hybrid vehicles for its passenger cars.
“I have also started discussions with Government, so we can bring forward by years the conversion of our bus fleet to electric and hydrogen.
“Under my mayoralty, the days of dirty diesel buses on Auckland’s streets will be numbered.
“I will also be pushing for the electrification of the railway from Papakura to Pukekohe under the Auckland Transport Alignment Project to start as early as next year.
“Clean transport is a key part to tackling our climate change and environmental challenges, as well as making our city a better place to live.
“I am the only candidate in this election showing leadership and vision on these issues,” said Mr Goff.