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Speculative behaviour encouraged by the ETS settings

Climate Change Minister James Shaw can no longer ignore the scale and pace of speculative behaviour being encouraged by the ETS settings and by his own assertions that the carbon price can only rise.

"From next year the (cost containment reserve[1]) trigger price will rise from $50 to $70 and will increase every year after that.

"The government will be introducing further changes to the ETS legislation next year on market governance, which should allay concerns about potential speculative behaviour."

Land prices have soared in the wake of fierce competition for land with afforestation potential and the acceleration of pine planting saw nurseries sell out of seedlings in May this year - all very clear indications that the country is likely to smash through the proposed planting rates advocated by the climate commission. Shaw is showing no inclination towards addressing the Commission’s recommendation to impose limits on the forestry settings in the ETS - and is instead issuing statements such as those above which seek to further inflame the hype in carbon speculation.

Communities themselves are frantically working to innovate and develop strategies using integrated landscapes which can sustain the aims of both water quality, biodiversity and climate change - while supporting families and communities - however these efforts risk being swamped by big money investors and wholesale exotic planting sanctioned by a government who consistently fails to listen. They are missing in action from the integrated landscape conversation and risk being on the wrong side of history when our grandchildren look back and see who shaped their world and how it was done.

[1] The cost containment reserve is a reserve of NZUs which are available for sale only if a trigger price is reached in the auction

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