Biography Deirdre Kent


You can see from my biography here that I am a long time environmental activist. I live in a retirement village in Waikanae. I have been involved in green economics for years.

Although I was originally a Maths teacher, I have researched and campaigned on many issues in my life and have co-founded many public interest organisations. Some have survived and some have not. I stood for the Values Party, New Zealand’s first environmental party in 1975. In my thirties I was an ardent feminist in Tauranga and ended up on the City Council for a term.

In Auckland I worked as a full time paid lobbyist for ASH (Action on Smoking and Health) for a decade, standing the heat of the tobacco industry. After that I worked to reduce alcohol advertising (unsuccessfully). But I did manage to merge the health professionals with the highly motivated temperance movement in an organisation called GALA before moving to Christchurch.

After a dalliance with the Alliance Party where the aim was economic growth, I left to found a national newsletter called The Indicator which was to be my first foray into new economics. This passion was to last. I subsequently wrote two books Healthy Money Healthy Planet – Developing Sustainability through New Money Systems (Craig Potton 2005) and The Big Shift – Redesigning Money, Tax, Welfare and Governance for the Next Economic System.(2017). You can see the gamut of topics covered in the index for this book.

I was a founding trustee in 2001 of Living Economies Educational Trust

During my 3 years in Wellington I co-founded an organisation working for Parliamentary Reform, then a Banking Reform group before moving to the Kapiti Coast where I have lived ever since.

I was a co-founder of The New Economics Party in 2011 and worked with those wonderful people till 2015.  Its website still exists and those are almost all my entries.

During my years in Otaki I co-founded Transition Town Otaki and the Otaki Timebank. Moving back to Waikanae, I spent two years as secretary of Low Carbon Kapiti working on climate change issues before branching out to work with a Facebook group called Fly-less Kiwis. Later I wanted to keep myself alive and healthy through diet and exercise. So I started a FB group called Climate Friendly Eating. 

The pandemic led me back to new economics with a vengeance. It is also called Green Economics or Ecological Economics. In 2022, after involvement with Wise Response, I co-founded a group called Degrowth Aotearoa New Zealand (DANZ).

Over the years I have been interviewed a bit. One of these is from Australia on land tax.

I have 4 children, 13 grandchildren and one great grandchild.

Contact Deirdre.