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Groser deliberately missing the point - Mackey

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Climate Change Minister Tim Groser has deliberately missed the point on the restriction of cheap international units into New Zealand’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Moana Mackey says.

"The Government has announced a review of the eligibility of certain units in the ETS due to what Mr Groser describes as concerns about ‘environmental integrity’.

"Mr Groser knows full well that the environmental integrity of units is a completely different issue. This is nothing more than a cynical attempt by the Minister to look like he’s doing something to address the very serious concerns raised by the forestry sector when in fact he’s doing nothing.

"Blocking some units on the basis of environmental concerns will do nothing to stop the collapse of the NZU price. We know this because the Government banned Certified Emission Reduction Units (CERs) from industrial gas destruction projects last year and New Zealand now has a carbon price of less than $3.

"The simplest approach would be to follow the example of Europe and Australia and require a proportion of units surrendered in New Zealand to be domestically sourced, yet the Minister is refusing to do this because he thinks the collapsing carbon price is a good thing, despite the catastrophic impact on the forestry sector.

"Claims that this is about ‘ensuring that the ETS doesn’t have an unreasonable impact on businesses and households in this time of economic recovery’ are utter rubbish when there is no evidence that the benefits of the low carbon price and Government subsidies and exemptions are being passed on to consumers.

"The fact is Tim Groser knows he won’t be Minister when the ‘wall of wood’ comes down in 2020 and New Zealand finds itself with a blowout in its carbon budget.

"He is in a position right now to stop that from occurring. His refusal to do anything to act before it’s too late is deplorable," Moana Mackey said.

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