Climate Change - Who Will Pay?Thursday, Nov 23, 2000
The Climate Change Conference in the Hague has given Pete Hodgson the opportunity to present New Zealand
views on the rules on pollution control to be laid down by all the nations that will subscribe
to these rules.
New Zealand has confirmed it will ratify the umbrella climate change agreement but is now pressing for
a sensible approach to the rules that will remove the politicking as nations set out to gain advantage
from the repositioning of cost allocations inherent in the "cost" of pollution management
Mr Hodgson's clear statement that the rules that secure environmental integrity are the same rules that
will deliver a price for carbon and that price, more than well-intentioned political commitment,
will catalyse appropriate technology transfer.
It is this price, which will impinge on NZ pastoral farmers who will be called on to account for the
gasses produced by their livestock.
Where is the indicative information on how these charges will be compiled and how will they be allocated
and what trade offs will be available? How will a carbon tax affect the future economics of farm
production in the international market place?
It would be a perverse scenario if carbon tax brought about a large transfer of profit from pastoral
farming to forestry thereby killing pastoral farming causing forestry overproduction and financial
loss in the future.
Where are the plans and who are the planners that will assure farming that the international commitments
being agreed to by government have a sensible and practical basis for New Zealanders.