Revised carbon liability for agriculture
The Ministry of the Environment has released its review of New Zealand’s carbon emissions for the year 2008. It has updated our forecast carbon emissions for the Kyoto commitment for the period 2008- 2012. This shows a change in our carbon emissions from a 21.7 million tonne liability to a 9.6 million tonne credit. That equates to a change in fortune of about $775 million to a $240 million surplus.
The 37.68 million tonne change around came from;
8.2 million tonnes came from an upward revision of the estimate of the amount of carbon our trees sequester. (A measure of their efficiency and how fast they grow.)
9.6 million tonnes came from lower deforestation
14.4 million tonnes came from a reduction in the agricultural emission forecast.
10.3 million tonnes of that is from reduced methane emissions resulting from reduced animal numbers and production because of the drought.
4.1 million tonnes came from a reworking of N2O emissions using NZ sourced measurements as opposed to international figures used previously.
Agriculture emissions are now at 2.89 million tonnes per year above 1990 levels and projected to be 6.38 million tonnes per year above 1990 levels by 2012. Agriculture’s liability will still be $150 million each year by 2012.
There is little change in the energy, transport and industrial sectors. These are of course the sectors that use fossil fuel which is really what this global warming is all about. These fossil fuel carbon emissions are real and could cause global warming; the agriculture ones are not and could not warm a small room let alone the planet because they are only theoretical emissions that are derived by using models that use multipliers to equate one greenhouse gas with another. In reality they do not exist, they are nothing but pretend emissions.
The sponginess of our emission profile leaping about as it has is evidence that there is something wrong with these models they use. The decrease in agricultural emissions because of the drought has had a huge effect on the country’s emissions profile, so huge in fact it does not seem credible. In fact it is not credible and has only happened because our agricultural emissions are grossly overstated in the first place. New Zealand’s carbon profile is distorted beyond belief by the inclusion of these theoretical agricultural emissions. It is also made farcical because they treat fossil fuel emissions in the same way as non fossil fuel emissions and they should not do that.
The Government insists on doing this however because they can offset large increases in carbon emissions from the energy and transport sectors with a relatively small decrease in deforestation. This is demonstrated by the result just released.
They could not achieve this if they differentiated between non fossil fuel and fossil fuel emissions.
The result is that agriculture is being burdened with a liability of $150 million per year by the year 2012 for emissions that don’t exist so that the emissions that do exist from the transport and energy sectors can be offset by forestry. The agriculture sector should not accept that situation and we don’t have to, we can and must fight it. We don’t have to be the fall guy and take this just because it is more palatable for a government to impose an unjust tax on a small percentage of the population than to try and get the whole country to stop using their cars and energy so that our real emissions can be reduced.
What they forget though is that if you want to stop global warming you have to reduce real emissions not the pretend ones, but then this is not really about global warming is it?