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NZ To Clarify Emissions Trading Scheme Rules

by Mary Swire,, Hong Kong

22 October 2012

The New Zealand government has sought advice to help it clarify the domestic carry-over provisions in its Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).

A request has been made by Climate Change Minister Tim Groser to as yet unnamed officials to look into the provisions. According to Groser: "Clarifying the rules for carry-over of international units would provide ETS participants with certainty about how the international carry-over rules will be applied domestically."

In 2015, New Zealand must surrender emissions units equal to its emissions over the first Kyoto commitment period. The period runs from 2008 to 2012. The Kyoto carry-over rules mean that any units in the New Zealand Emission Unit Register not approved for carry-over after this time will be cancelled and will not be eligible in future periods. What has yet to be finalized is precisely how these international rules will be applied domestically.

Groser also announced that the government is reviewing the eligibility of certain units in the ETS. This is because of concerns raised that the restrictions placed on some Certified Emission Reduction units in 2011 were not encompassing enough.

“We need to make sure that New Zealand continues to do its fair share, alongside other countries, to combat the effects of climate change while ensuring that the ETS doesn’t have an unreasonable impact on businesses and households in this time of economic recovery,” Groser explained.

Any changes to the eligibility of Kyoto units in the ETS would be subject to Cabinet approval and public consultation.

TAGS: environment | tax | business | law | agreements | carbon tax | New Zealand

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