11 Nov 2022

Farming groups unite against government emissions plan

11:27 am on 11 November 2022
Dairy cows in a milking facility in New Zealand.

The three industry groups say a united voice on emissions pricing is the best way to get a positive result for farmers. Photo: 123rf

Farming groups Beef and Lamb New Zealand, Dairy NZ and Federated Farmers are reaffirming a united stance on the government's emissions proposal - they don't like it.

Leaders from the three groups met in Christchurch this week to establish common positions before submitting on the government's plan.

They were involved in industry partnership He Waka Eke Noa which came up with the farm-level split-gas levies scheme which was presented to the government.

They said the government's plan released last month has changes which make it unworkable for farmers.

In an email to farmers last night the three industry groups said a united voice on emissions pricing was the best way to ensure positive policy outcomes for the sector.

The email said the meeting was productive with farming leaders coming up with nine suggestions they will raise directly with the government on behalf of farmers.

They said the current methane targets were wrong and needed to be reviewed, they wanted the methane price to be set at the minimum level and for it to be fixed for a five-year period to give farmers certainty.

The groups have stood strong on initial sequestration measures proposed by the He Waka Eke Noa partnership some of which were removed by the government.

"All sequestration that can be measured and is additive should be counted.

"Farmers who don't have access to mitigations or sequestration should be able to apply for temporary levy relief if the viability of their business is threatened," the email to farmers said.

They also wanted an independent oversight board appointed by all He Waka Eke Noa partners established to help set the future methane price and for administration costs of the programme to be minimised.

Beef and Lamb New Zealand, Federated Farmers and DairyNZ urged farmers to make their own submissions on the government's proposal before feedback closed next Friday.

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