'Bipartisan accord on climate change' is critical if New Zealand wants to tackle the issue – James Shaw

New Zealand has its "best chance" for political parties to work together on climate change, says Green Party co-leader James Shaw, as National tries to find common ground over how to best tackle the issue. 

On TVNZ1's Q+A, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and National's climate spokesperson Todd Muller appeared together and discussed how Parliament intends to work together. 

"I have to say that I think we’ve got our best chance that we have ever had of getting a bipartisan accord on climate change. And I think it is critical," Mr Shaw said.

Emissions (file).
Emissions (file). Source:

"Whatever we do has got to endure for multiple decades through several changes of government and if we can at least get started in a bipartisan manner then I think that helps to provide some assurance of that."

Mr Muller described working together as "an opportunity for us particularly if we can see if we can have common ground over the institution of a climate change".

He said the political divide over climate change could be seen in Australia, who "give us a great example in many respects about how not to do it".

"They have been at each other's throats across both parties. In fact climate change and the lack of alignment and dealing with it has brought down four prime ministers."

Watch the full exchange between the Green Party leader and the National Party climate change spokesperson. Source: Q+A

Mr Muller said creating the conditions that looked at the best evidence, science and technology "and advise us over time how we wrestle these emissions down over five, ten, 15 years, I think that is good for the country. 

Climate Change Minister James Shaw and National's climate spokesperson Todd Muller are looking for common ground over climate change. Source: Q+A