A guest post from Wellington based climate advocate Liz Springford, written the day after PM John Key officiated at the opening of Bathurst Resources’ New Zealand office.

Our Prime Minister has said it’s not acceptable for the Hon Nick Smith to write a letter of support for his friend Bronwyn whose case was being handled by a government agency, Nick has to resign his portfolios.

But this same week our friendly Prime Minister officiated at the opening ceremony of the new offices of Bathurst Resources. This mainly Australian-owned company’s case to open up Denniston conservation land to large scale mining is currently being handled by a government agency – and the Environment Court. Doesn’t the fact that the case is being heard by the judiciary make this public show of political support worse?

The Hon Nick Smith’s worst breach of public responsibility was to lead a totally inadequate response to climate change, endangering the lives and well-being of most New Zealanders alive today.

Again, the Prime Minister has not only failed to support his Climate Change Minister to lead scientifically responsible action, but is now encouraging the expansion of global emissions by opening up new mines, deep sea drilling and other dangerous fossil fuel escalation.

So tell me again, why was it that Nick had to go?