Goodhew: ETS review an opportunity for forestry

24 November 2015

The announcement of the start of a review of the NZ ETS brings an opportunity to consider how New Zealand can further incentivise the planting of more forests, says Associate Primary Industries Minister Jo Goodhew.

"Forestry is one of New Zealand's largest and cheapest forms of carbon storage," says Mrs Goodhew. "It is critical that foresters engage in the review so that together we can develop policy proposals that are in the best interests of the scheme and the sector."

The review will be run in two stages. Stage one will focus on the current situation where non-forestry participants can surrender only one NZU for every two tonnes of emissions, or pay the Government a fixed price of $25 per NZU. Submissions on this stage will close on 19 February 2016.

Stage two will consider ways to improve the operation of the NZ ETS and set its future direction. Technical notes will be released to support discussion on these issues. These will include information on a number of issues of interest to foresters, including:

  • accounting methodologies for post-1989 foresters, including averaging, harvested wood products, and emissions from adverse events;
  • the exemption provisions for tree weeds for pre-1990 forests;
  • the transfer of participation for post-1989 forestry; and
  • the penalty and prosecution regime.

"We will begin engaging with the sector in early 2016, once the technical notes have been released," says Mrs Goodhew. "Submissions on stage two will close on 30 April 2016 and I expect proposals will be developed by the end of 2016.

"Foresters engagement will help us achieve greater regulatory certainty, improve the scheme's operational efficiency, and remove unnecessary barriers to planting."

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Source: NZ Government media release