Our Seas Our Future (OSOF) is supporting the passage of the Zero Carbon Bill in Parliament on Thursday. The new legislation will provide a framework for carbon neutrality and commit New Zealand to net-zero emissions by 2050.
“We welcome the passing of this significant legislation that is both a positive step and milestone towards carbon neutrality for New Zealand,” says Noel Jhinku, Trustee of OSOF.
“We’re even more pleased to hear the Bill passed on a nearly united front, 119 votes to one. Cross-party support, as well as central and local government action, is critical in our fight against climate change.”
OSOF has been an active voice in addressing the global climate crisis through its Climate Action Now brand, and overall mission to protect New Zealand’s coastal and marine ecosystems.
“Climate change poses a fundamental threat to our entire ecosystem including rising sea levels, extreme weather patterns, coastal flooding and ocean acidification,” says Mr Jhinku.
The Bill’s set target for reducing greenhouse gas emissions (except biogenic methane) to net-zero by 2050 is positive but more action is required. Per capita, New Zealand has the largest methane emission rate (0.6 tonnes per person, per year) and it’s also the largest contributor to New Zealand’s national greenhouse gas emissions. The Bill only requires methane emissions to be reduced by 10% by 2030 and by between 25 – 50% by 2050.
“Despite the Bill being a landmark framework for climate action, its net-zero framework for greenhouse gases excludes methane emissions. If we want to have a better future for ourselves and future generations, we need to ensure that we’re considering the true impact of all emissions and our activities on sea and land,” says Mr Jhinku.
“We hope this Bill is the first of many, and that we can continue to lead along the path of meaningful climate action.”