Farming Willing to Work Together On Agriculture Emissions

Published: Wed 19 Oct 2016 03:00 PM
Farming Willing to Work Together On Agriculture Emissions Challenges
Federated Farmers supports the PCE’s call for a better approach to understanding the ways to control and reduce agricultural greenhouse gases.
"We’ve always said the ETS is only one way to work on this issue. And we’ve always insisted agricultural emissions should be measured and monitored from the farm level, not from processors.
"It’s good to see the Commissioner coming around to this way of thinking," Federated Farmers spokesperson on Climate Change Anders Crofoot says.
Feds sees the report as a useful contribution to the ongoing discussion New Zealand needs to have about finding ways to reduce agricultural emissions.
As the report points out, total emissions from agriculture in the last 25 years have increased by 15%, while at the same time emissions from road transport increased by 71% and industrial processing by 45%.
"To achieve the massive change required to reduce agricultural emissions, we are gong to have to work together as a nation, and we are going to have to look for solutions based on new technologies, smart science and good research," Anders says.
The report also notes agriculture has made major gains in controlling emissions while still increasing productivity, stating that emissions would be 40% higher than they are now if gains had not been made through improvements like breeding more efficient animals and improving farm management.
Feds does not support the inclusion of agricultural emissions in the ETS, because it would put New Zealand producers at a severe competitive disadvantage on international markets.
"However, we did support New Zealand’s signing of the Paris Agreement, because this country needs to be at the forefront of finding solutions to this issue.
"We don’t think the ETS is the appropriate tool for farming, but we will consider being involved in something else that makes more sense for farming.
"We are dealing with about 30,000 farms which are very different, with very different environmental impacts. As the report itself says, we could be looking at huge variations in emissions even between neighbouring farms.
"New Zealand farmers are totally committed to leaving their land in as good, if not better, condition than they found it," Anders says.

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