CTU MEDIA RELEASE
17 June 2008
Lot done but more to do on Climate Change Bill
The Climate Change (Emissions Trading and Renewable Preference) Bill as reported back from the Select Committee shows that a lot of effort has gone into consultation with stakeholders Council of Trade UnionsEconomist Peter Conway said today.
“The delay in the phase out of free credits, a provision enabling allocation plans to create a reserve of emission units for new business investment within the cap, strengthening the review process, incorporating the ability to impose an emissions trading obligation on international shipping lines in relation to “domestic” legs of international journeys, and increased allocation of free credits for foresters are all measures which respond to major concerns.”
“The CTU has consistently arguedthat there needs to be a broad range of climate change responses including regulation, mitigation, investment and education.”
“This does includes issues such as the design of allocation of credits and assistance for workers who are disadvantaged, but also programmes to directly reduce emissions and conserve energy, developing the skills base for sustainable development, and providing assistance for those on low incomes impacted by increased fuel, electricity and other charges as a result of emissions trading.”
“The Government has put a huge effort into consultation with many meetings including business and other stakeholders and this is reflected in the changes to the Bill,” Peter Conway said.
“Now the focus needs to turn to the impact for those on low incomes. And it is time for the business sector to acknowledge the consultation they have had with Government, the recognition of their concerns in the amendments and now take a more constructive approach to the Bill”.
“We all know that New Zealand can do little on its own about climate change, but our exports will be detrimentally affected if we do less than we should and business needs to take this on board,” said Peter Conway.