This is the National Party minority report submitted by the National Party members of the Environment select committee that considered submissions on the so called carbon zero bill. NZ First has done farmers no favours on this and supported the ridiculous methane targets. National has played it safe to some extent with its suggestion which is t let the independent climate commission decide. The test now for National is will it support the bill if the Government does not concede on these.
New Zealand National Party minority view in Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill
Several concerns with the bill were raised by the public, stakeholders, and the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment during the select committee process.
National seeks the following changes to the Zero Carbon Bill:
- That the target for biological methane reduction be recommended by the independent Climate Change Commission.
- That the bill make clear that the stated aim of the Paris Agreement is for greenhouse gas reduction to occur in a manner that does not threaten food production. Currently the bill cherry-picks wording from the agreement.
- Strengthen provisions that consider the level of action being taken by other countries and allow targets to be adjusted to ensure we remain in step with the international community.
- That the bill ensure that the Commission consider economic impacts when providing advice on targets and emissions reductions.
- That the bill ensure that the Commission consider the appropriate use of forestry offsets, and have regard for the carbon sink represented by tree crops, riparian planting, and other farm biomass.
- That emissions budgets be split between biogenic methane and carbon dioxide as recommended by the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment.
- That the bill include a greater commitment to investment in innovation and research and development, to find new solutions for reducing emissions.
These changes would improve the bill and ensure that it is in line with National’s climate change principles of taking a pragmatic technological and science-based approach.
National believes that the bill would have negative impacts on the New Zealand economy and that there would be increased costs to kiwi families, businesses, and slower GDP growth. We consider those negative impacts should be made clear to New Zealanders.
The changes we are seeking would ensure that incentives drive the right long-term change and that the wider impact on the economy, jobs, and incomes are fully factored in so that we are protecting everyday New Zealanders as our emissions reduce.