Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

We need to work together on climate change and farming

We need to work together on climate change and farming, says Environment Commissioner

New Zealanders must work together and start tackling the complex problem of the biological greenhouse gases from agriculture, says Dr Jan Wright, Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment.

The Commissioner has today released a new report on the issue of agricultural greenhouse gases – methane and nitrous oxide – which form about half of New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions.

“In Paris last year the world committed to limiting global warming,” said Dr Wright. “If we are to succeed, the next few decades will be crucial. It’s time to join forces and make some progress.”

Over more than a decade, there have been a number of false starts in dealing with agricultural greenhouse gases, and much controversy over their continuing omission from the Emissions Trading Scheme.

“The debate around agricultural emissions and the ETS has been polarised for too long,” said the Commissioner. “But the ETS is not the only way forward – there are other things that can be done.”

Dr Wright says reducing biological emissions will not be easy, but a common understanding of the science is a good place to start.

“In a way, my report is a reality check,” she said. “There are no silver bullets here, but we need to do what we can to curb these emissions – and we need to start now.”

Immediate opportunities for reducing New Zealand’s emissions lie in new native and plantation forests, and the Commissioner wants to see real progress in this area.

“It might not be the whole solution, but a million hectares of trees would make a big difference – not to mention the added benefits for erosion and water quality.”

The Government has recently set up working groups to look at these issues, and Dr Wright says this is encouraging. But she warns that change is now inevitable.

“Our farmers have shown time and again their ability to adapt to new challenges,” she said. “The world will continue to need food. But in the long term the way in which food is grown, and the types of food grown, will have to change if biological emissions are to be reduced.”

The Commissioner’s report Climate change and agriculture: Understanding the biological greenhouse gases is available here. A set of frequently asked questions can be found here.

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Land, Air & Sea: Regions To Benefit From NZ Upgrade


Regional New Zealand will be a hive of activity in the coming months as the New Zealand Upgrade Programme delivers on its promise to modernise our infrastructure, prepare for climate change and help grow our economy. As part of the $12 billion NZ Upgrade Programme announced by the Government last month, $300 million was allocated for capital projects in regional New Zealand.
The first package of regional projects – worth about $190 million – has been announced by Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones at an infrastructure seminar today... More>>


 

Gordon Campbell: On The Donations Scandals

By now, it seems crystal clear that something is deeply amiss with the way that New Zealand political parties solicit, receive and report their funding. Evidently, the nominal threshold of $15,000 that requires public disclosure of the donation ... More>>

ALSO:

New Zealand Government: Action On Fuel Market Competition

The Government has released a comprehensive response to ensuring New Zealanders get a fairer deal at the petrol pump. This follows the Commerce Commission fuel market ... More>>

ALSO:



Child Poverty: 18,400 Children Lifted Out Of Poverty

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed new reporting showing the Coalition Government is on track to meet its child poverty targets, with 18,400 children lifted out of poverty as a result of the Families Package... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Our Unreal Optimism About Coronavirus

At this week’s Chinese New Year celebrations, PM Jacinda Ardern was resolutely upbeat that business with China would soon bounce back to normal – better than ever, even - once the coronavirus epidemic has been brought under control. To Ardern, ... More>>

ALSO:


 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 


 

InfoPages News Channels