“Jacinda Ardern and James Shaw are blowing hot air with a climate target that is fanciful, given our trading partners’ more modest commitments and the reality of a country burning Indonesian coal to keep the lights on even now,” says ACT Climate Spokesman Simon Court.

“It’s becoming increasingly clear ACT is the credible party on climate change, with policies based on realistic targets, sound science and economics instead of fanciful targets and expensive, ineffective bureaucratic solutions.

“Since 2005, New Zealand’s net emissions for all gases including land use change have dropped four per cent, from just over 57 mega tonnes then to just under 55 mega tonnes 14 years later in 2019. The goal of 50 per cent reduction by 2030 is a fantasy, and we’d be better off with smarter efforts instead of bigger goals.

“Back in reality:

  • New Zealand is importing record levels of Indonesian coal to barely keep the lights on
  • Even the Government is not switching its vehicle fleet to electric at anything like the rate promised in its speech from the Throne
  • The climate emergency, and the Government’s climate budgets had to be postponed due to disorganisation
  • The Emissions Trading Scheme has been messed with reducing its effectiveness with price controls
  • The Government has been throwing money at expensive and inefficient emission reduction schemes because the Climate Change Commission doesn’t believe prices matter.

“Against all of this, net emissions have risen under this Government.

“Today’s announcement is not only out of touch with New Zealand reality, but the world. The Australian Nationally Determined Contribution, released Friday, sets a more realistic target of 26-28 per cent reduction by 2030. We are moving way out of sync with our trading partners under this goal.

“For years countries have engaged in the old trick of setting an even more ambitious target to distract from the fact they’ve missed the less ambitious one they set five years ago. Ardern and Shaw have set a new standard of gall in this deceitful artform.

“ACT proposes a realistic, no-nonsense climate change policy that matches our efforts with our trading partners’ with minimal bureaucracy. We should set a cap on total emissions in line with the actual reductions of our trading partners, then allow New Zealanders to import high quality foreign carbon credits so we pay the world price, not an artificial price.

"The realistic outcome of this mad plan is that people will eat less New Zealand dairy, beef, and lamb, instead supporting farmers offshore who are less efficient.

“ACT’s policy would actually achieve better emission reductions without endless ineffective bureaucracy such as the Feebate scheme.”

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