The Climate Change Response (Emissions Trading and Other Matters) Amendment Bill is currently before Parliament’s Finance and Expenditure Select Committee. The closing date for submissions is 10th September. READ OUR SUBMISSION IN FULL
If you are in agreement with the contents of the submission and are comfortable that it represents your views, please email email@example.com and we will add your name to the list of parties that this submission represents. You are also welcome to include any comments of support at the same time. This in no way stops you from making your own submission (online via www.parliament.nz), however we appreciate that not everybody has the time to do that.
If you wish to respond please do so by midday on Monday 10th September.
Amongst other things this Bill is proposing to retain New Zealand emitters’ ability to continue to purchase cheap foreign credits (derived from schemes/projects not considered appropriate for our own ETS) to satisfy their surrender obligations.
In the 2011 year less than 13% of all credits surrendered by emitters were forest-created NZUs. The majority of the balance were purchased off-shore from projects registered with the United Nations. The credits from the majority of these projects can only be surrendered in minor or nil proportions in Europe, and New Zealand is the only country we are aware of that will allow an emitter to surrender up to 100% of them. Many of these projects (although they meet UN requirements) would not be able to generate credits within New Zealand under our own ETS framework. Continued access to them will allow emitters to cover off on their New Zealand surrender requirements but will do nothing to reduce New Zealand’s actual carbon emissions. Furthermore, although we have tried very hard, we have been unable to confirm that emitters are passing the savings on to the people paying at the fuel pump and electricity meter.
Going forward, we understand Europe requires 1,750 million carbon credits, and latest estimates are that there will be a minimum of 4,427 million available up until 2020. This does not count other units that are just starting to emerge from Russia and the Eastern Block countries from UN approved projects.
We believe New Zealand wants to do its fair share and is capable of doing that through forestry carbon sequestration, but to do this will require some recognised reward for those making it possible. The solution we are proposing is that Government impose a requirement for emitters to surrender a minimum of 50% NZUs in their annual emission returns which would align with the Australian approach (incidentally Australia has capped the maximum amount of UN-backed Kyoto units at 12.5% from 2015 onwards).