9 Feb 2022

Agriculture emissions pricing deadline extended by a month

11:55 am on 9 February 2022

The government has agreed to extend the timeframe the farming sector has to come up with an emissions pricing option to the end of May.

Canterbury region farms

(File photo) Photo: RNZ / Nate McKinnon

Industry partnership He Waka Eke Noa is discussing two options for how to pay for on-farm emissions with farmers during a series of meetings this month.

It was due to pick and present one final option to the government in April but asked for an extension after the country moved into the red traffic light setting.

Federated Farmers president Andrew Hoggard also wrote to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern requesting an extension, saying farmers were to busy focusing on keeping the food supply chain running to attend consultation.

The government has agreed to a one month extension. He Waka Eke Noa will have until late March to conduct consultation and must present its recommendations to ministers by the end of May.

Programme director Kelly Forster said Minister of Agriculture Damien O'Connor and Minister for Climate Change James Shaw understood the need for more time to discuss the options, to allow for additional meetings of smaller audiences, while noting the timetable was already tight.

The government is expected to make a final decision on a pricing system for agriculture emissions in December.