Clarifying the case on climate change . . .

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Terry Sage of Trades Coaching New Zealand

Terry Sage of Trades Coaching New Zealand responds to his responders, clarifying his stance on climate change.

Whoever said good things come to those who wait? I wonder if that person is still waiting.

Me? Well, I’ve been left hanging for 88 articles — and that’s like eight years of one-finger typing — living in hope that there is at least one person out there who actually reads my words of wisdom — or, it seems in this case, my drivel.

Lo and behold, it seems like more than one person reads my words, as the editor received not one but two letters in response to the recent column I wrote regarding electric vehicles (Building Today August 2019).

Now, many journalists write with the intent to stir emotions and provoke a challenge. I’m not one of those, not by a million miles, simply because I’m no journalist, not even close.

What I am is a humble geezer who enjoys the odd writing exercise and the freedom to have an opinion. As indeed is anybody out there, whether they like my ramblings or not.

So let’s just settle a couple of points. Whatever I write is purely my words and thoughts. It has nothing to do with the views of the Registered Master Builders Association or Building Today.

So any public flogging should come my way, and my way only. That’s the power of free speech and latitude of opinion.

I would like to assure the two gentlemen who put pen to paper and vented their own thoughts on the opposite page regarding my words that I am not the antichrist of electric vehicles, or the devil against global warming — quite the opposite in fact.

However, after reading the strength of your words, I certainly wouldn’t put myself in your planet savers league.

Yes, our family recycles cans and bottles, we don’t use plastic bags any more, we use alternatives to glad wrap, and now I have to use a bar of shampoo — a damn slippery bugger at that — so there’s no plastic bottles in the shower.

And what’s more, I ripped out the smoke-belching wood fire, saving the trees and the atmosphere, and installed a very expensive pellet fire. And I don’t smoke or drink beer, so there are no alloy cans in my rubbish bin.

So give me a wee bit of leeway please?

In my defence, I am not against the electric car. In fact, the other half is making noises about buying one, so if you want to donate one of those Tesla S cars to my garage you will be my new best friend, I promise.

My words — and, indeed, they were a bit strong in places and rambled in others — were aimed at the powers that be down in the windy city, and against the fact that, yet again, I am being bullied, coerced, threatened, blackmailed and being told to buy electric or “we will slap an $8000 tax on you”.

Being told what I can or can’t do never has sat that well with me, and then having it cost me a holiday in the islands just tore a hole in the underwear.

I did state that some of my points were garnered from what I have read or listened to, but one point I will stand behind is that the technology is not quite there yet to satisfy many commercial users.

I travel more than 50,000km a year. Some working days I drive only a 100km round trip, while many are more than 500km.

Is there an electric car that has the comfort and speed to travel more than 500km without a charge, and won’t cost me hundreds of thousands of dollars to purchase?

If I could find a suitable substitute for my current gas-guzzling, environment-destroying mode of transport then I’m with you, really I am.

But I believe there’s nothing out there that comes close to my $13,000, 2011 E350 AMG that does 1000km on $95 worth of diesel without having to stop, in supreme comfort and endless power.

Hence my words aimed at the politicians — leave me alone until there is an affordable alternative, and don’t penalise me or force me into a hairdryer that has to be plugged in for a charge-up at every second set of traffic lights.