We’re not asking: Oil Free Wellington

James Barber is a member of Oil Free Wellington, an activist group trying to prevent oil exploration in New Zealand. Naomi Klein has pointed out in her book ‘This Changes Everything’ that humans can’t afford to burn the fuels already discovered. In the 80s we had nuclear arms proliferation, where Soviets and Americans together posessed enough destructive force to destroy us multiple times – the same is now true of fossil fuel reserves. And yet the exploration continues.

James joined me for a talk and to tell everyone about the rally for climate justice in Wellington during March the 26th and 27th. This will form a blockade at the oil and gas industry’s annual business conference.

This episode was a lesson for me on the principles and duties of civil disobedience – a tradition going back to H D Thoreau and beyond. The more we talk about New Zealand’s nuclear free moment the closer, it seems, we’ll come back to this point.

I’m at the Pacific Climate Conference here in Wellington this week, meeting and talking to lots of people involved in the problem. I’m not sure who I’ll be talking to next episode, but it will likely be someone I meet this week.



02:15 Origins and Goals – Climate Justice and systemic problems
04:00 Oil Summit
10:50 Genesis of Oil Free Wellington
12:20 Activism events from the past
18:20 Statoil Chevron complete surveyr
20:14 People’s flotilla, the Anadarko amendment and laws tested by Russell Norman and Greenpeace. More drilling expected this year
22:20 Questions about personal risks
24:20 Lengthy court processes
25:30 Uncharted territories and the CO2 graph
27:25 Farmers and coastal property owners now getting warning signs
28:30 Economic pressures on a farming operation, Industrial dairying and capital investment
30:14 350’s divestment strategies and revolutions in energy, food and transport
31:45 The industrial processes to create milk
35:25 Industrial processes that use livestock
36:00 Monocultures and 8 billion people
37:40 How do keep the world we have without adding to climate change
38:15 Returning to life in the 70s
41:50 Being more positive – making the world a better place. Working with unions.
45:10 Chosing the see the world as a resource
46:10 Indigenous peoples and consuming the world
49:00 Food deserts and enforced options of capitalism
52:20 Locallised services
54:10 Razor blades in trucks passing on the road
55:22 Counting cars in space
58:20 Sci fi and the absurd, bitcoin
1:04:00 Global networks of capitalism
1:05:00 Parenthood, life during a crisis and finding a tribe
1:06:00 Nauru and Holloway Road.
1:10:20 Tribes of climate activism – Paradise built in Hell
1:13:40 Sci fi ad
1:16:00 Blockadia and disparate communities


Blockadia with the Pacific climate warriors – 350 Aotearoa

Aaron Packard of 350 Aotearoa joined me for this episode. He is part of the global 350.org movement dedicated to climate action.

We talked about his work in the pacific, the new government, and the power of funds divestment.

I mentioned a bit from Vox about nuclear power – here’s a link to their video on the subject: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=poPLSgbSO6k

02:20 Aaron and Gecko, Launch of 350 2008
07:00 Cook Islands - another white guy with another idea. 
11:40 Waiting for a government that takes climate change seriously.
14:00 James Renwick Connecting news events to climate change
18:20 Water crisis in Cape Town
22:05 Combining action across a variety of groups - collaborate and amplify
24:30 Joining 350
26:50 Relaunch of fossil free campaign, churchs and universities divesting
28:30 Providing tools to start campaigns
30:30 You nuclear moment
34:15 Government since the election
39:35 Previous government and hoax conspiracies
40:15 Climate hawks and nuclear power (see the Vox piece https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=poPLSgbSO6k)
42:00 Decoalonisation - dirty coal from China to Africa
45:50 Blockadia in Australia's largest coal port with the Pacific Climate Warriors
53:25 Where are people at - the way humans expand
58:30 Opening up to the way different cultures relate to the earth
1:00:04 Stages of grief and addiction
1:08:00 Getting the 10% - sparking an unstoppable energy revolution
1:13:30 Education
1:16:50 Talking with sceptics
1:18:00 Katherine Hayhoe - getting people to talk about climate change