Pricing farm emissions: it’s great to enable NZ to boast a world first – but how much culling must be done to achieve it?

Point of Order

The Ardern government is claiming a world first in its policy to cut agricultural emissions.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern asserts  that its proposal “delivers a competitive advantage, enhancing our export brand”, and…

“No other country in the world has yet developed a system for pricing and reducing agricultural emissions, so our farmers are set to benefit from being first movers.”

Farmers  themselves  may be bemused, if  not bewildered, by  the Government’s spin because critics claim the  scheme  aims to reduce sheep and beef farming in New Zealand by 20% and dairy farming by 5%, to achieve  what   Federated  Farmers  labels “the unscientific pulled-out-of-a-hat national GHG targets”.

Agriculture Minister Damien  O’Connor  seeks to put  the  best  face  he  can on the government’s  policy, saying  that

“… by rewarding farmers who take action to cut their emissions we can support more farmers to improve their productivity and profitability while achieving climate goals.

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