Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 

ETS defenders seek 50% limit on foreign carbon credits

ETS defenders seek 50% limit on foreign carbon credits

By Pattrick Smellie

Sept 12 (BusinessDesk) - Politicians are in for an ear-bashing from both environmentalists and foresters at select committee hearings this morning on the need to limit New Zealand industrial carbon emitters' use of foreign-sourced carbon credits to 50 percent of total obligations.

The push, led by the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, Dr Jan Wright, is opposed by the large emitter lobby, with Business New Zealand arguing any move to pump up rock-bottom prices for New Zealand Units will undermine the "least cost" principle that drives the emissions trading scheme.

Wright, an Officer of Parliament, broke with parliamentary convention yesterday when she released a statement drawing attention to her submission, to be presented orally at Parliament this morning, in which she described proposed amendments to the ETS as making "a farce of our response to climate change."

The cumulative impact of the reforms proposed in the Climate Change Response (Emissions Trading and Other Matters) Amendment Bill would be to lock in "big polluters", as Wright called carbon-intensive industries, "to pay for only 5 percent of their emissions indefinitely."

"In such circumstances, there is no way New Zealand would reach its legislated target of a 50 percent reduction in emissions by 2050," said Wright.

Both Wright and other submitters also called for a cap on the total number of foreign-sourced credits that could be surrendered under the New Zealand ETS. Unlike most other countries with an ETS-style carbon pricing system, New Zealand allows large emitters to buy as many foreign credits as it likes.

The glut of European Union emissions reduction units has dropped global carbon prices under $4 a tonne in recent weeks, far lower than ever envisaged when the government imposed a $25 per tonne upper limit that emitters would face in the transitional phase of the scheme, which Wright argues is now indefinitely locked in.

Also supporting the 50 percent cap on foreign credits are forestry farming submitters such as New Zealand Carbon Farming Group, which called for New Zealand "to introduce, without delay, a cap on international carbon units of 50 percent."

"A cap … would not only deliver on the government's stated ETS objectives, but would also deliver a host of other long term sustainable environmental, reputational and economic benefits to New Zealand," the submission from the country's "largest supplier of post-1989 sourced carbon credits" says.

Wright's submission says "there is a balance to strike between allowing some international trade in carbon credits (so the least cost carbon reductions can occur worldwide) and making sure that investment also contributes to creating a domestic low carbon economy.

"New Zealand credits (NZU's) drive green growth, energy efficiency and forestry within New Zealand."

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 




Barfoot and Thompson: Auckland Housing Prices Shrug Off Winter Concerns

Auckland house prices shrugged off the normal winter downturn, concerns about increasing prices and warnings of possible future interest rate rises in July.
“Mounting concerns about the prices being paid and possible future interest rate increases did nothing to dampen July trading... More>>



Stats NZ: Sharp Falls In Unemployment And Underutilisation

The seasonally adjusted unemployment and underutilisation rates fell to 4.0 and 10.5 percent, respectively, in the June 2021 quarter, Stats NZ said today. The unemployment rate continued to fall from its recent peak of 5.3 percent in the September 2020 quarter... More>>


FIRST Union: Do Shareholders Realise Marsden Point Conversion Could Cost More Than Half A Billion Dollars?

FIRST Union, the union representing workers at Refining NZ, are querying whether shareholders voting on Friday on whether to convert the Marsden Point refinery to an import-only terminal realise the conversion could cost $650-700 million dollars... More>>


Transport: July 2021 New Vehicle Registrations Boosted By EV Rebate Scheme
Motor Industry Association Chief Executive David Crawford says that July 2021 sales of new vehicles were boosted by the recently introduced rebate scheme. July 2021 registrations were 15,053 units compared to 12,263 units for July 2020... More>>



ASB: New Support Finder Tool Helps Connect Customers With Thousands In Government Support

ASB research alongside benefit numbers from the Ministry of Social Development shows an increased number of Kiwis are struggling financially, and many may not be aware they’re eligible for government support... More>>


Housing: New Home Consents Continue To Break Records

A record 44,299 new homes were consented in the year ended June 2021, Stats NZ said today. “The annual number of new homes consented rose again in the June 2021 year, the fourth consecutive month of rises,” construction statistics manager Michael Heslop said... More>>