"Good environmental practice" said Simon Bridges, "is crucial for securing the type of future we want for our children and grandchildren."
This was in a speech he made to the Blue Greens conference in April last year.
He also said "Climate change is going to be one of the most challenging issues of our time. We've made some good progress in recent years, but we need to do much more."
I guess this means that Simon believes in climate change.
The logical progression from this is that National would support policies that meant New Zealand was trying to do its bit to reduce its emissions. We are, after all, in the top 20 per cent of countries worldwide for carbon dioxide emissions per capita.
And goodness knows New Zealand loves a per capita ranking.
And so National supported the Carbon Zero legislation through its first reading which is great. This sort of work needs bipartisan support.
So what the hell is going on now?
The announcement two weeks ago of a feebate scheme to get more people into EVs and away from "gas-guzzling" cars as well as the introduction of actual fuel efficiency
standards is a genuine move to reduce our transport emissions.
New Zealand's gross emissions went up over 2 per cent between 2016 and 2017, and the major drivers of that increase were fossil fuel-generated electricity production and road transport emissions.
Good on the Government for trying to do something sensible and fair to work on that.
In my column two weeks ago I said I believed that National would support it because Bridges was a huge EV fan himself.
He drives one! He was the Minister of Transport when the National Government brought in a policy to remove all Road User Charges for EVs until 2021!
He wanted National to be a cleaner green environmental party, one that the Greens would consider going into coalition with! Surely National would issue a supportive statement saying that this was an excellent idea for New Zealand to get working on its emissions.
Sadly I was wrong.
What we got was disingenuous social media posts saying that this policy would mean people buying older Toyotas would be subsidising those who were buying brand new Porsche Cayennes.
Despite both vehicles not being part of this scheme. It was heavily implied that all New Zealanders buying petrol cars would pay more for them, but it's only for the worst emitting cars and only when they are first brought into New Zealand. To suggest ongoing costs is wrong.
We then got Todd Muller weirdly picking fights with a museum for saying that reduced dairy farming would be better for our emissions.
Arguing it was indoctrination, despite the exhibition being based on scientific reports.
Then came National's "hilarious" press release apologising to Minister Julie Anne Genter for getting the cost wrong and that it was actually higher than first thought and it was sorry for underestimating the cost.
You know what the cost of not doing anything is Simon? It's the trajectory towards people all round the world being displaced from their countries as their lands vanish underwater.
It's the transition of New Zealand from its current climate to a more tropical one where airborne diseases like malaria show up uninvited, it's one where the future you're securing for your children and grandchildren looks more like Mad Max Fury Road than the 100% Pure ads that Tourism New Zealand currently pumps out.
Since then, in an incredibly brave move, National climate change spokesperson Todd Muller has, to his credit, come out and said he's actually supportive of the policy, breaking with Bridges.
It seems it's just the leadership team that hate the policy and much prefer "hilarious" tweets than actual substantive ideas and solutions.
Bridges would actually have more integrity to just say he's a climate change sceptic if he's going to adopt these positions.
Because to accept that climate change is real but then to also reject any policy to try and address it is to say "screw the future generations. know it's going to get really bad, but I just don't care."
And that is the most morally bankrupt position of all.
At that same Blue Greens conference just last year, Bridges said a strong economy, education, healthcare and social services were not worthwhile "if we've ruined the environment".
If he truly believed this, he would have supported the feebate policy.
A former transport minister said the following about reducing emissions: "I was convinced as a Minister that the answer did lie with the electrification of our fleet. It does lie with public transport. That's how you drive behaviours and make a difference".
It's a shame that that former transport minister grew up to be National Leader Simon Bridges.