Nelson & Tasman Local Council Election Candidate Questionaire

Council candidates’ awareness of approaching problems with fuel supplies and economic growth — responses to an ASPO questionnaire

ASPO-NZ Inc and ASPO-Nelson (branches of the Association for the Study of Peak Oil) asked candidates for both local Councils and Community Boards to complete a simple questionnaire. We were interested in two things. To what extent did they think Councils should take Peak Oil and its twin Climate Change into consideration when planning Council business. And how well did they understand the implications for Councils of exponential growth (i.e. compound interest growth) in population and economic activity.

We received responses from 37 of the 75 individuals, for which we thank them. All respondents recognised that Peak Oil and Climate Change must figure prominently in Council thinking. This is a big step up from the reaction we’ve been receiving from most existing councillors. The message is getting through.

In response to the exponential growth questions, most respondents picked the correct doubling time implicit in say 7% annual growth. The answer is 10 years — the rule of thumb is divide the percentage growth rate into 70. Of course, you also have to remember that the second doubling starts from the result of the first doubling — 1-2-4-8-16-32 etc. Thus no one thought that Nelson-Tasman’s current growth could continue indefinitely, and everyone agreed that growth should be very carefully managed to be sustainable and avoid long-term negative consequences.

Given the world’s current obsession with “growth”, that last sentence raises the question of whether any kind of continued growth in economic activity and population can be sustained for ever. Many think that is impossible, by definition.

ASPO is encouraged by the responses. If our respondents are elected, Council planning should henceforth be on a sounder and more sustainable basis.

Questions

1. In your opinion, where does Climate Change fit with Council affairs?
a) All Council Policy must be benchmarked against Climate Change.
b) Climate Change is real, but not council’s business as it is a central government issue.
c) Climate Change is not an issue at all.
d) I have no opinion.


2. In your opinion, where does Peak Oil/Energy Depletion fit with Council affairs?
a) All Council Policy must be benchmarked against Energy Depletion.
b) Energy Depletion is real, but not council’s business as it is a central government issue.
c) Energy Depletion is not an issue at all.
d) I have no opinion.


3. Council’s generally pride themselves on growth. What is the impact of 7% p.a. growth?
a) Nelson will be twice as big as it is now in 100 years.
b) Nelson will be twice as big as it is now in 50 years.
c) Nelson will be twice as big as it is now in 10 years.
d) Nelson will be twice as big as it is now in 5 years.


4. What do you think about growth, both population and economic?
a) It is so good it can go on forever.
b) It is important in its own right.
(c) It should be managed to avoid disadvantages.
d) Growth brings problems such as crowding and cost increases.
e) Growth is the driver of environmental degradation, resource depletion, and ultimately civilisation collapse.


Candidate Responses

NELSON MAYORAL 1 2 3 4 GROWTH
IAN BARKER B B C
GAIL COLLINGWOOD A-B A-B C C E will happen
JACQUI GOUGH
DENISE HENIGAN A A 50Y D
MARK HOLMES A-B A-B C C-E v. careful management
KERRY MARSHALL A A C C must be sustainable, templates for addressing council business
MIKE WARD A A C E right growth
GARY WATSON
NELSON COUNCIL
COLIN AITKEN B B C
IAN BARKER B B C
ALI BOSWIJK
VICKI BROWN
BOB BURDON
SUE CHARD A A ? B-C
ANDY CLOVER A A C C-D-E- thoughtful
GAIL COLLINGWOOD A-B A-B C C Ewill happen
MIKE COTTON
ERIC DAVY
BERNARD DOWNEY
GRANT ELLIS A A C C
ANNE FITZSIMON A A C E
KEVIN GARDENER B B C C
JACQUI GOUGH
DENISE HENIGAN
MARK HOLMES A-B A-B C C-E very careful management
ALISON MACALPINE
JASON MACCORMICK
KIM MERRY A A D C
ALDO MICCIO
ERROL MILLAR A-B A-B OK C-D concerned about climate chnge
HUGH NEILL
REX NEWEY
PETE RAINEY
RACHEL REESE A A too broad A&E unhelpful
DEREK SHAW A A C E
KATY STEELE A A C E urgent
GRAEME THOMAS A A C E
ALAN TURLEY
MARGOT WILSON
TRISH WITT
TASMAN MAYORAL
RICHARD KEMPTHORNE A-B A B-C
JOHN HURLEY
CLIFF SATHERLEY A A
PHIL TAYLOR A A B-C
TASMAN COUNCIL
STUART BORLASE
STUART BRYANT
GLENDA BUSCHL
ALY COOK A A C-D
GORDON CURRIE
BARRY DOWLER
JUDENE EDGAR A A C C-D
BRIAN ENSOR A A C
BRENT FORRESTER
GLENYS GLOVER
REBECCA HAMID A A C C-E
MICHAEL HIGGINS A A C C reality
SHARON HOBSON
ROGER HYND A A plannng needed
JACK INGLIS
TIM KING
TREVOR KNOWLES
DAVID LE LONG
BRIAN LONSDALE A A C C
TREVOR NORISS
TED O'REGAN
NOEL RILEY
PAUL SANGSTER
MALCOLM SAUNDERS B C C
MIK SYMMONS
EILEEN WILKINS
Motueka Community B.
ROD BARKER A A E life balance
BARRY DOWLER
DUNCAN EDDY A A D C-E greed
TARA FORDE
ERIN HAWKE
PAUL HAWKES
DAVID OGILVIE
G. BAY COMM. BD.
JOE BELL A A C E Hong Kong?
KAREN BROOKES
LEIGH GAMBY A A C E
CAROLINE MACLELLAN