Kyoto Protocol Economically Irresponsible For New Zealand
"It would be grossly irresponsible for the Government to ratify the Kyoto Protocol until the rules are known and the
economic implications for New Zealand of reducing greenhouse gas emissions are fully understood" Federated Farmers of
New Zealand President Alistair Polson said today.
"The Federation welcomes the Ministers recognition that important details of the Protocol including international carbon
trading mechanisms, recognition of carbon sinks and compliance are yet to be settled" Mr Polson said.
"No other country is facing the same issues. New Zealand is unique in having agriculture as the main contributor to its
greenhouse gas profile. It is unclear what the implications will be, and a great deal more research is required" Mr
"We can not ratify the protocol in the hope that science will eventually deliver."
"Consultation with the agricultural sector has been poor," Mr Polson said. "The agricultural sector has not been given
sufficient opportunity to consider the implications of reducing greenhouse gas emissions."
"Agriculture is below its 1990 emission levels, and considering most of the tree planting since 1990 has been on farm
land, it is irresponsible for the Government to get to this position without adequately consulting with the sector."
"Government can not afford to compromise a sector which makes such a significant contribution to the economy".
"New Zealand should follow Australia's example and back away from the Kyoto Protocol. Agriculture contributes 55% of New
Zealand's 0.2% contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions. Taking a principled stance on an issue that New Zealand
can make little contribution to resolving makes no economic sense," Mr Polson concluded.