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"Projects" a key climate change policy

"Projects" a key climate change policy

"Projects to Reduce Emissions" are expected to be a significant source of early gains in reducing New Zealand's greenhouse gas emissions, the Convenor of the Ministerial Group on Climate Change, Pete Hodgson, said today.

Mr Hodgson was speaking to an Energy Federation conference on the Projects to Reduce Emissions scheme, which will reward emission-reducing projects with internationally tradeable 'carbon credits' created by the Kyoto Protocol. The New Zealand Climate Change Office is conducting the first round of tenders for Projects in September and October.

"With Projects, we identify activities that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, account for those reductions under the Protocol and reward the activities using Assigned Amount Units – those things we usually refer to as emission units or carbon credits.

"Projects are new and the approach taken by this country is innovative," Mr Hodgson said. "This is an example of how the Kyoto Protocol creates new business opportunities. It puts a price on greenhouse gas emissions, reflecting their environmental cost, and in doing so it creates new opportunities for trade and profit. "The Government sees this policy as key measure to encourage greenhouse gas reductions before the introduction of an emissions charge in 2007. We want to support businesses and individuals with innovative ideas for reducing emissions, by providing an incentive to make their projects happen." Mr Hodgson said the Climate Change Office would give weight when ranking proposals to projects that will achieve emissions reductions before 2008, primarily to encourage projects that would contribute to New Zealand’s near-term electricity security.

"Because electricity is such a significant energy source, many projects are likely to involve saving or producing it. Any opportunity to achieve both emission reductions and greater electricity security is attractive."

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