Reforming the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme: Proposed settings Consultation document

Federated Farmers has an active interest in the development of climate change policy and its impacts on our farmer members. New Zealand farmers are not only impacted by the possible inclusion of agricultural emissions (i.e., methane and nitrous oxide) into the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme (NZ ETS). They, like other businesses and households, bear the burden of the NZ ETS through its impact on necessary farm inputs such as electricity and fuel. A number of farmers are also more directly affected by the NZ ETS as they have forests on their land, many of whom are considering planting options. It is important that the NZ ETS is fit for purpose for the integration of increased vegetation into existing farm systems, and not merely the wholesale conversion of farms into forestry blocks.

Federated Farmers has also submitted on the overarching Climate Change Response (Emissions Trading Reform) Amendment Bill and the Zero Carbon Act 2019. We have also submitted on other proposed regulatory changes to the ETS that were primarily concerned with forestry and the auctioning mechanism within the NZ ETS.

Our main interests in the proposed ETS settings consultation are:

  • Ensuring farmers are able to maintain their international competitiveness, should agricultural emissions be included in the NZ ETS at a later date
  • The dependence of the New Zealand primary sector on inputs, such as fuel and electricity, that are directly impacted by the NZ ETS;
  • The need for regulations to follow the precedent set by the split gas approach taken in the Zero Carbon Act (ZCA). Changes to the ETS should not allow for the offsetting of long-lived emissions with short lived biogenic methane. In order to be consistent with a split gas approach; changes to the ETS should also clearly distinguish between long lived emissions and short-lived biogenic methane in both emissions budgets and in emissions reporting.

 To read the full submission click opposite