ACT is welcoming National’s decision to finally oppose He Waka Eke Noa – now it needs to join ACT in pledging to dump the entire Zero Carbon Act, says ACT’s Primary Industries spokesperson Mark Cameron and ACT candidate Andrew Hoggard.

“ACT’s opposition to He Waka Eke Noa has been clear from day one. New Zealand farmers are the most emissions efficient farmers in the world and ACT is committed to policies which reduce the emission intensity of our products while ensuring that production is not driven offshore to less emissions-efficient competitors”, says Mr Cameron.

“ACT will tie any emissions price to that of our five main trading partners to ensure there is a level playing field for growers and producers competing overseas. We’ll remove barriers stalling the uptake of emissions reducing technologies. And we’ll ensure farmers can offset all on-farm sequestration from their emissions liability.

“Only ACT opposed the Zero Carbon Act. We’ve said from the start that the legislation is cumbersome and bureaucratic and will allow Governments to micromanage the economy at great cost.”

“New Zealand will not prosper if we are forced to make significantly deeper emissions cuts than our trading partners. We will simply impoverish ourselves and push economic activity to other countries”, says Mr Hoggard.

“The risk of shooting ourselves in the foot is very real. If we set more aggressive targets than other countries, it will not only harm the economy but also force activity to less efficient jurisdictions, actually increasing global emissions.

“New Zealand farmers are the best in the world and they’ve had to confront plenty of challenges recently. But they shouldn’t have to face challenges from their own Government, too. Labour and the Greens believe Wellington knows best and their bureaucracy and regulation are crushing the rural sector. ACT understands why rural New Zealand is angry with Wellington. We are proud to be the voice for rural New Zealand.”

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