ETS U-turn Shows Why ACT Needed

Press Release – ACT New Zealand

National’s announcement that it will effectively exempt agriculture from liability for biological emissions under the Emissions Trading Scheme appears to be a step in the right direction, but it is also an admission that the ETS was an expensive …ETS U-turn Shows Why ACT Needed

National’s announcement that it will effectively exempt agriculture from liability for biological emissions under the Emissions Trading Scheme appears to be a step in the right direction, but it is also an admission that the ETS was an expensive mistake, ACT Primary Industry Spokesman Don Nicolson said today, adding that it’s a promise that risks being scuttled unless ACT plays a significant role in the next Government.

“ACT has fought tooth and nail against the folly of the ETS. We opposed the scheme being implemented, saying it was going to cost farmers, businesses, and consumers alike, for no environmental gain. Today’s U-turn from National proves that ACT was right,” Mr Nicolson said.

“New Zealand is the only country to have an all gases, all sectors ETS – it is a poorly-conceived blanket tax. By forcing New Zealand to rush ahead of our major trading partners with a flawed system, National has damaged New Zealand’s fragile economic recovery while doing nothing for the environment.

“By stating that the ETS will not impose a liability for biological emissions on agriculture unless there are ‘practical technologies to reduce our emissions’ and unless our trading partners ‘have made further progress with their climate change policies to reduce emissions’, National is hopefully exempting agriculture from the scheme indefinitely.

“However it is extremely unlikely that any of National’s other potential support partners will vote to exempt agricultural emissions from the ETS. Unless ACT plays a strong role supporting a John Key-led Government, National could very well be forced by either the Maori Party, or the Greens, to include agriculture in the ETS, causing huge damage to New Zealand agriculture,” Mr Nicolson said.

ENDS

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