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Historic climate change legislation passes

10 September 2008

Historic climate change legislation passes

A cornerstone economic tool will now proceed to help New Zealand reduce greenhouse gas emissions and tackle climate change, Climate Change Minister David Parker says.

The Climate Change (Emissions Trading and Renewable Preference) Bill was passed in Parliament today. The legislation establishes the framework for the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme.

“I’m proud to be part of a government that takes climate change seriously and has committed to meaningful action, even though it has been challenging at times,” David Parker said.

“I’d also like to thank the Greens and New Zealand First for supporting this bill.”

“Since New Zealand signed Kyoto a decade ago, this country has debated how to price emissions. Consultation and debate on the issue have been exhaustive and it is now time to get on with it.”

David Parker said the Emissions Trading Scheme would act as a catalyst to bring forward clean technology and would create incentives for climate-friendly behaviour and investments.

“For the first time we will start factoring in the true cost of greenhouse gas emissions into our economy. This is in line with developments in the rest of the world.

“The sooner we get on top of this challenge, the sooner we can reap the benefits of providing low carbon goods and services that are attractive to affluent overseas markets. There is much to be gained by grasping this opportunity.

“While there will be extra costs for some sectors, I am confident that the support the government is providing both to households and to businesses will smooth the transition we absolutely must make, if we are to play our part in the global struggle against climate change.”

ENDS

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