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New Zealand Launches New Plan to Tackle Greenhouse Gas Emission

New Zealand Launches New Plan to Tackle Greenhouse Gas Emission

New Zealand has introduced a new plan to tax cattle and sheep burps in a novel bid to battle one of the country’s major sources of greenhouse gases. New Zealand will be considered to be the first country to charge farmers for methane emissions that their farm animals emit in the atmosphere.

The country is home to more than five million people, as well as approximately twenty-six million sheep and nearly ten million cattle. Around half of the country’s total greenhouse gas emissions come from methane that is emitted in the atmosphere from agricultural areas.

But, in the early days, agricultural emissions were not included in the country’s emission trading scheme, which has been scrutinized by those people calling for the regulatory body to take more steps to stop global warming.

As per New Zealand’s climate change minister, James Shaw, “We really need to cut the amount of methane that is released into the atmosphere. A highly effective emissions pricing system is set to play a significant role in how we achieve our goal, especially in the agriculture sector.”

Under this new proposal, from 2025, farmers in New Zealand will have to pay for their gas emissions. The proposal also mentions that incentives will be provided to those farmers who would manage to lower emissions through feed additives. The regulatory body is also expected to encourage farmers to plant more trees on their farms to reduce emissions in the atmosphere.

The national president of Federated Farmers of New Zealand, as well as a dairy farmer named Andrew Hoggard stated that he has broadly approved of the new proposal. He further declared that farmers have been closely working with the government and other private organizations for years to find out a unique approach that would not otherwise negatively affect farming in New Zealand. Thus, they have gradually signed off on a large number of activities that they were happy with.

Mr. Hoggard mentioned that minute details of the proposal’s introduction were not disclosed yet. Just like all other types of agreements with several parties, this one too will have a few dead rats to swallow.

New Zealand’s environment ministry stated that the money raised from this new scheme will be mainly invested in advisory services, as well as research and development activities. The country’s finance minister also committed to offer US$ 2.9 billion in the previous month to introduce new initiatives to tackle climate change in New Zealand. It will be majorly funded by an emissions trading system that had been taxing polluters.

Methane in the atmosphere had reached record levels in 2019, about two-and-a-half times above what they actually were in the pre-industrial area. Scientists are currently worrying about methane’s ability to heat up the planet. Methane is around 84 times as powerful per unit of mass as CO2 over a 20-year period. Thus, governments of various countries are currently on a mission to tackle the crucial situation.

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