Source: Radio New Zealand, 5 October 2016
New Zealand has ratified the Paris Agreement to combat climate
It has formally submitted its emissions reduction target of 30
percent below 2005 levels by 2030.
which was struck in Paris last December, aims to keep global
temperature rises to well below 2°C.
In order for it to come into force, 55 countries, making up 55
percent of global emissions, need to ratify the agreement.
India ratified the deal at the weekend - the 63rd country to do
so - and pushed the emissions threshold to 52 percent.
European Parliament has backed the ratification overnight -
which means national ministers can now ratify the agreement on
behalf of the EU later this week, meaning both thresholds will be
Climate Change Minister Paula Bennett said New Zealand wanted to
be part of the first tranche of countries pushing the agreement
"We won't be enough to tip it over 55 percent, we are relatively
small in the scheme of things, sort of 0.2 percent really, so we're
really low, but I think it's really important to show that we are
committed and ratifying early.
"This really does show a commitment."
However, she said New
Zealand's target of reducing emissions to 30 percent below 2005
levels by 2030 was very ambitious.
"We're not going to meet it unless we make changes.
"At the moment we've got a number of pieces of work going on
where we really start getting into the nuts and bolts of how we
reduce our emissions and play our part worldwide," Mrs Bennett
The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade select committee
fast-tracked its consideration of the Paris Agreement to ensure New
Zealand could ratify the deal quickly.
In the report, released yesterday, the committee said New
Zealand would need to make some law changes to comply with the
agreement, but those would not be needed until closer to 2020 when
the agreement took effect.
NZ's target not ambitious enough - Labour,
In their minority report, Labour and the Greens said they
supported the move to ratify the deal, but were not happy the
report did not acknowledge all the current pledges to reduce
greenhouse gas emissions submitted by countries were not enough to
reach the goal of the agreement - to restrict global warming to
They also said New Zealand's target was not ambitious enough and
were concerned there was currently no integrated across-government
approach to addressing climate change.
Both parties recommended the implementation of an independent
climate commission, which was advocated by a number of