This is a guest post from Aaron Packard, who works with 350 Aotearoa in New Zealand.

Earlier this week we paid a visit to the Labour Party, who are the main opposition party in the New Zealand Parliament.

We had a great meeting with 12 of their MPs, updating them on our plans for the year, including 10/10. We had a couple of 350 ties, one of which we gave to Charles Chauvel, the Labour Party Climate spokesperson, and that evening he proudly showed his support by wearing his 350 tie in the debating chamber. It's been awesome to have Charles' and the Labour Party support – we're feeling confident that when the Government next changes, it'll be a 350 supporting government (with the help of the Green Party who are also great 350 supporters).

Our next step though is to go and visit the National Party again, who lead the current government and are definitely dragging the chain on effective climate policy. Do read the following hilarious transcript of the exchange that occured in the debating chamber:  


(Charles starts his speech)

John Hayes: Are you some kind of horse?

Hon Member: It's his list ranking…

Charles: …I can see that my tie is causing great amusement on the other side of the House. I will advise members opposite, because it is a good time to give this advice to them, that 350 is the name of a campaign by a group of young people who mobilised on the climate change issue last year. It is a bit of a shame that there is not instant familiarity with the issue among members opposite, as there is on this side of the house…

…These young people – and I know this is a slight digression Mr Deputy Speaker, but I hope you will indulge me – came to see our caucus this morning and to talk to us about where our policies were at in this area. They were incredibly engaging young people and it was great to see them. I have worn this tie in their honour, and it is good to be able to explain that to members opposite. Hopefully that will end the levity on that serious issue.

Chris Tremain: I'm sure you just made that up.

Charles: I can assure Mr Tremain that I never make things up. That is a monopoly that is enjoyed on the other side of the House…

(later on during the speech)

John Hayes: I raise a point of order Mr Speaker. I draw your attending to the Standing Orders, at page 17 –

Shane Ardern: Speakers' rulings.

John Hayes: Sorry, Speakers' rulings 17/1. Although the first sentence refers to the wearing of a hat, the second sentence talks about the wearing of attire with advertising or a message written on it would not be acceptable. I wonder whether you would like to rule on that.

Mr Deputy Speaker: I will rule. In my view the member is just interrupting the speaker on his feet. There is nothing untoward in what the member is wearing, and I ask the member to continue.

Charles: Thank you, Mr Deputy Speaker. I know that the 350 group will appreciate my wearing its tie and will not mind the fact that the member who has resumed his seat, notwithstanding his climate change credentials, is present in the Chamber…
 

For more climate movement news, follow 350 on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram

FacebookTwitter