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New Zealand to ratify Paris agreement this year

Hon Paula Bennett


Minister for Climate Change Issues

17 August 2016

New Zealand to ratify Paris agreement this year


The Government plans to ratify the Paris agreement on climate change by the end of the year, Climate Change Issues Minister Paula Bennett says.

The agreement was finalised last December and made available for signature in April this year. Ratification is the formal step that countries must take to be full participants and to ensure the deal takes effect.

“The Paris agreement is historic and changed the way the world thinks about climate change. Ratifying it early reinforces our commitment to this deal and our support for the global momentum to grow with lower emissions,” says Mrs Bennett.

Under the agreement, each nation is required to set an emissions reduction target. New Zealand committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions to 30 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030.

“This is an ambitious target that won’t be easy for New Zealand to achieve. All parts of society have a part to play in the transition to a lower emissions economy, from central and local government through to businesses, iwi and communities,” Mrs Bennett says.

“New Zealanders are already doing a lot of work to reduce our emissions, from being more energy conscious through to some of the exciting changes in agriculture.

“No matter how much New Zealand reduces its emissions, we will still feel the effects of a changing planet if other nations do not make significant changes.

“It is clear that we need to be better prepared to adapt to these changes, so I am establishing a group of technical experts to look at things like the effects on infrastructure and economic growth.”

Terms of reference and membership for the group will be released within weeks.

The Government plans to finalize ratification before the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change conference in November.

The Paris Agreement and a National Interest Analysis will today be tabled in the House of Representatives for consideration by a select committee. The Government will then sign and deliver the ratification document to the United Nations in New York.

ends

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