Northland MP Matt King says he's no climate change denier despite sharing a Facebook post stating that climate change is natural.
The post, originally published by former Act MP Muriel Newman's NZ Centre for Political Research, unleashed a barrage of criticism for King on social media.
Called 'If I wanted New Zealand to fail', the post took aim at the Government's ban on oil and gas exploration, city dwellers who condemn farmers while eating their produce, renewable energy, and ''climate scaremongering by politicians''.
It also stated that ''climate change is natural and mankind's impact is minimal''.
King said he agreed with about three-quarters of the post but not the part about climate change.
In hindsight, the MP said he should have edited the post to remove the parts he didn't agree with before sharing it.
Initially King prefaced his post with the words, ''Words of wisdom from the NZCPR website''.
Later he changed it to: ''Some words of wisdom (not all) from the NZCPR website''.
The MP said he acknowledged the need to curb carbon emissions — ''you're silly if you don't'' — but said people needed to retain perspective.
''I'm not a denier. We need to acknowledge there is climate change and to a degree, yes, it is human-induced, but I am concerned to see this hysteria, for example, that the world will end in 12 years if we don't declare an emergency.''
King said he shared the post because the rural community was ''under siege'' and felt like it was being attacked from all sides. Some of the targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, as it stood now, would ruin farming.
''There are no tools in the toolbox at the moment, or even on the horizon, that would allow us to meet those targets.''
He had been subjected to ''a lot of venom'' and been called a fascist and a Nazi since sharing the post, but had also received many messages of support.
''But I had to tell them I'm not a climate change denier,'' he said.
The original post was published on the NZCPR website on Sunday. The text comes from a 2012 video by Free Market America, a group whose stated mission is ''to defend economic freedom against environmental extremism'', with 'America' replaced by 'New Zealand' and other adaptations.
The NZCPR is run by Muriel Newman of Whangārei. A founding member and three-term MP for the Act Party she is also known for her campaign against a Whangārei landmark's name change from Parahaki to Parihaka.