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Kyoto = more cows, fewer trees in NZ

Kyoto = more cows, fewer trees in NZ

Wednesday 16 Feb 2005

Gerry Eckhoff - Press Releases - Rural

The Labour Government would do well to reflect upon the impact on New Zealand's environment of their signing of the Kyoto Protocol, ACT Rural Affairs spokesman Gerry Eckhoff said today.

"The plantings of new forests has all but stopped along with a promise of clearance of existing young forestry into dairying as a result of Kyoto," Mr Eckhoff said.

"Landowners are now spraying young trees with herbicide to clear the land to grow grass for dairy cows. Retention of carbon credits by the owners of the trees would've ensured more plantings of forestry, not the farming of cows.

"Ironically, Landcorp - a state-owned enterprise - will be managing the transition of 20,000 hectares of forestry into dairying - exactly the opposite result of the Government's intention in signing the Kyoto Protocol.

"It is young growth trees that absorb the most CO2, not old growth native forests which, in fact, contribute to methane gas emission with rotting trees.

"The impact of a few million possums belching and flatulating their way through vast hectares of DOC's native trees is also a major contributor to so-called global warming.

"New Zealanders can only look forward to significantly increased costs trying to stay warm during our cold winters. All thanks to Labour's insistence that human-induced global warming exists, based on shonky science and hand-wringing bureaucrats," Mr Eckhoff said.


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