26 May 2011

Farmers can reduce emissions, says council

6:57 am on 26 May 2011

The Sustainability Council is rejecting claims by the Prime Minister John Key that it is difficult for farmers to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions short of shooting productive stock.

Mr Key made his comments this week as he discussed how agriculture might join the Emissions Trading Scheme.

He says there is only so much farmers can do to reduce emissions, because much of the problem comes from stock.

The executive director of the Sustainability Council, Simon Terry, disagrees, saying there are existing farming techniques that can be used to reduce emissions by more than 10% at no cost to farmers.

Labour has said that if it is elected to Government it will bring agriculture into the ETS in 2013, requiring farmers to start paying a carbon charge for livestock emissions two years earlier than the current timetable.