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New ways to respond to climate change

04 November 2004

Trans-Tasman partners find new ways to respond to climate change

Seven projects have been announced today under the Australia-New Zealand Bilateral Climate Change Partnership. The new projects create more opportunities for Australia and New Zealand to work together to respond to climate change.

The Partnership, formally announced by the New Zealand and Australian Governments in July 2003, focuses on concrete and practical ways to address climate change.

Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell, said the Climate Change Partnership was enabling New Zealand and Australia to work closely together on climate change.

"We are already seeing progress on the first round of projects. The projects we are announcing today will build on this work and importantly include initiatives involving our Pacific neighbours,” he said.

The seven partnership projects involve measuring and abating methane from livestock and nitrous oxide from agriculture; working with developed countries on adaptation strategies; extending the Australian-New Zealand end-use energy efficiency scheme to Fiji; and promoting efforts to improve climate observations for Pacific Island countries.

These new projects will lead to:

Enhanced scientific understanding and measurement of methane and nitrous oxide emissions from the agriculture sector;

Greater consistency and opportunities for collaboration across Australian and New Zealand research efforts on adaptation, and improved adaptation strategies;

Cost effective energy savings and greenhouse gas emission reductions in Fiji;

Greater understanding of the mutual benefits of comprehensive climate observations for short-term decision making, and of related capacity building in the Pacific region; and

Collaboration between New Zealand and Australian authors for the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Convenor of New Zealand’s Ministerial Group on Climate Change, Pete Hodgson said climate change was a reality and the issue was taken very seriously by both New Zealand and Australia.

“The Partnership is proving to be effective in furthering our shared objectives and expertise and in encouraging related business opportunities on both sides of the Tasman,” Pete Hodgson said.

Previous projects under the bilateral relationship have already led to opportunities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and engage business on climate change.

For example, Australia and New Zealand are establishing networks between local councils to strengthen their responses to climate change. New Zealand recently introduced the Communities for Climate Protection programme. In doing so it has benefited from six years of experience with the programme in Australia.

Climate Change and Business: The Australia-New Zealand Conference and Trade Expo 2004, being held in Auckland on 4 and 5 November 2004, is jointly sponsored by the Australian and New Zealand Governments under the partnership. This event provides an opportunity for business to showcase greenhouse technologies and expertise.

Further information on The Australia-New Zealand Conference and Trade Expo 2004 can be found at www.climateandbusiness.com

Australia-New Zealand Climate Change Partnership – New Projects

Workshop on adaptation and international best practice in developed countries A workshop for government advisers, scientists and stakeholders from developed countries to discuss current efforts and future options to adapt to the effects of climate change. Held in Wellington, 11 – 13 October 2004.

Measurement and abatement of methane emissions from livestock management A project to expand trans-Tasman work on the measurement and abatement of methane emissions from livestock – a major source of greenhouse gases in both countries.

Abatement of nitrous oxide emissions from agriculture and managed land systems A project to collaborate on establishing accurate and reliable measurement techniques for nitrous oxide emissions from agriculture and managed land systems, and developing and promoting adoption of best management practices and technologies.

Calorimeter Calibration of sulphur hexafluoride (SF6) Tracer Technique

A project to compare the two major methods of measuring livestock methane emissions for compiling national greenhouse gas inventories, and evaluating the effectiveness of abatement technologies and practices. This Victoria-based project will compare measurements from respiration chambers and the SF6 tracer measurement technique.

Common Appliance and Equipment Energy Efficiency Programme A project to extend into Fiji the Australian and New Zealand energy efficiency standards and labelling scheme for nominated consumer appliances and equipment; in collaboration with the South Pacific Applied Geosciences Commission.

Side-event at the next Conference of the Parties (COP 10) on Global Climate Observation System implementation in the Pacific This project involves Australia, New Zealand, the United States, and Pacific Island partners highlighting the benefits of comprehensive climate observations for both short-term decision making and capacity building to understand and deal with climate change in the Pacific region.

Facilitating preparation of the Australia-New Zealand chapter for the IPCC 4th Assessment Report This project will enable Australian and New Zealand authors to coordinate their efforts in preparing the Australia-New Zealand chapter of Working Group II’s contribution to the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report by supporting authors to meet and exchange views.


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