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


Transport, trees key factors in climate change response

Transport, trees key factors in climate change response

New Zealand’s most effective actions on global warming in the short to medium term would be to focus on energy and transport, and improve current policies to better reward those who want to plant trees, Federated Farmer says.

The Federation’s climate change spokesperson, Andrew Hoggard, said the new report "Our Atmosphere and Climate 2017" provides a useful update on the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions.

"It confirms a lot of what we already know, including that agriculture is a significant contributor to emissions. Federated Farmers acknowledges the incredible amount of work going on to address climate change, and to reduce greenhouse gases.

"However, we need to be mindful of the international perspective. Greenhouse gases don’t recognise nations’ borders; this is a global equation.

"As some of the most efficient protein producers on the planet, if a New Zealand farmer doesn’t produce a kilo of milk or meat, then it will be produced elsewhere in the world and most likely more emissions will be released into the atmosphere," Mr Hoggard said.

The Paris Agreement acknowledged that "…safeguarding food security and ending hunger" is also a fundamental priority, so it is illogical to include NZ agriculture in the ETS when other producer nations don’t do so.

Scientists here and overseas are working hard on ways to reduce biological agricultural emissions (methane and nitrous oxide). Good information is starting to come through on changing animal diets, and breeding for animals that emit less methane.

"Farmers eagerly anticipate confirmed results, and our record as efficient producers shows we are early adopters of practices and technologies that work."

Even more exciting is the prospect of methane inhibitors or vaccines, that unfortunately are still five to seven years away from market release. There’s a good case for more investment in this scientific research if it accelerates progress, Mr Hoggard said.

As the Ministry for the Environment/Statistics NZ climate change report highlights, the greatest increase in New Zealand’s emissions since 1990 have come from road transport (mostly carbon dioxide), up 78 per cent.

"That’s an area we should target. How can we accelerate the switch to electric vehicles?"

The report echoes earlier recommendations of Net Zero and former Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment Jan Wright that planting more trees can offset emissions to meet Paris Agreement deadlines and while we await science advances.

"Farmers are very open to discussions about policies, including reducing red tape and current complexity, that could increase the rate at which trees are planted."


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Government: Delivering Lower Card Fees To Business

Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister David Clark has today announced the Government’s next steps to reduce merchant service fees, that banks charge businesses when customers use a credit or debit card to pay, which is estimated to save New Zealand businesses ... More>>

SEEK NZ Employment Report: April 2021

OVERVIEW OF APRIL 2021: STATE OF THE NATION: April, for the second consecutive month, saw the highest number of jobs ever advertised on Applications per job ad fell 9% month-on-month (m/m). SEEK job ads were up by 12% m/m. SEEK job ads were ... More>>

Commerce Commission: Warns Genesis Over Business Billing Errors

The Commerce Commission has issued a warning to Genesis Energy Limited about billing errors concerning electricity line charges to business customers. Genesis reported the errors to the Commission. The Commission considers that Genesis is likely to ... More>>

Stats: Lower Job Security Linked To Lower Life Satisfaction

People who feel their employment is insecure are more likely than other employed people to rate their overall life satisfaction poorly, Stats NZ said today. New survey data from the March 2021 quarter shows that 26 percent of employed people who thought ... More>>

The Conversation: The Outlook For Coral Reefs Remains Grim Unless We Cut Emissions Fast — New Research

A study of 183 coral reefs worldwide quantified the impacts of ocean warming and acidification on reef growth rates. Even under the lowest emissions scenarios, the future of reefs is not bright. More>>

The Conversation: Why Now Would Be A Good Time For The Reserve Bank Of New Zealand To Publish Stress Test Results For Individual Banks

Set against the backdrop of an economy healing from 2020’s annus horribilis , this week’s Financial Stability Report (FSR) from the Reserve Bank (RBNZ) was cautiously reassuring: the country’s financial system is sound, though vulnerabilities remain. More>>