Sam McIvor, chief executive of B+L NZ, said the sheep and lamb sector remained committed to reducing carbon emissions and that all sectors needed to support the Government to meet its commitments.
The Productivity Commission’s latest draft report ‘Low Emissions Economy’ outlined 50 recommendations to reduce carbon levels to below 5% of the 1990 levels by 2020, under the European Commission’s Paris Agreement, a global action plan to avoid climate change that was signed by 195 countries.
One of the recommendations stated that there needed to be fewer sheep and cows in order to achieve the emission goals.
Despite agreeing with the goals, McIvor said there were other ways to achieve the objectives rather than lowering the number of sheep and cows across New Zealand.
“The sheep and beef sector remains committed to continuing to reduce its carbon emissions,” said McIvor. “We have already reduced our emissions by almost 20% below 1990 levels, well below New Zealand’s Paris commitments of 11% below 1990, while at the same time making significant productivity gains.
“New Zealand’s approach must be fair and recognise the contributions of individual sectors to both the problem and the solution.”
Productivity Commission chairman Murray Sherwin said major changes were needed if New Zealand wanted to take its greenhouse gas emission targets seriously.
“New Zealand can reach its low emissions targets if it has the right institutions and policy settings in place, and the journey is embarked upon without delay,” said Sherwin.
Australian processor Southern Meats recently teamed up with energy provider ReNu Energy to create an abattoir that turns waste into power.