Environment and emissions

Water saving plan for Fonterra’s Edendale

[03 September/Stuff NZ] Fonterra’s Edendale site has an ambitious target to reduce its water usage by 750 million litres of water per year, the equivalent to 500 olympic swimming pools, in order to reduce water levels significantly by 2030. Edendale is a water constrained region, so Fonterra wants to ensure that the water levels stay...

What will supermarkets look like in a low-carbon future?

[01 September/Stuff NZ] Countdown supermarket is looking to reduce carbon emissions by 60 per cent by 2030, it announced this week in its yearly sustainability report. The ambitious new target is in line with limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. Countdown’s Kiri Hannifin states reducing the amount of plastic and packaging...

Removal would cost billions: report

[31 July/Rural Life] Removing pesticide products could slash more than $11billion in value across New Zealand commercial crops, according to a new report from the NZ Institute of Economic Research (NZIER). The NZ Association for Animal Health and Crop Protection (Agcarm), which represents a number of agrichemical brands, commissioned the report in late 2018 to...

Danone to cut carbon emissions at Balclutha plant to zero

[30 July/Stuff NZ] French company Danone is investing $40 million to build a milk spray drying plant in Balclutha which will be powered by forest waste, making it carbon neutral by 2021. Most of the investment will be spent on a $30m biomass boiler that will reduce the plant’s CO2 emissions by 20,000 tonnes per...

Countdown’s BYO container scheme goes nationwide

[29 July/Stuff NZ] Countdown supermarkets are rolling out a bring-your-own container scheme across the country this week after a successful six week trial in selected stores. Consumers can now bring their own containers to deli, meat and seafood counters where they will be cleaned, dried and weighed by staff before being filled. The initiative is...

Dutch company’s methane blocker hits NZ roadblock

[28 July/The Country] DSM, a Dutch multinational has created a feed supplement 3-NOP which has been found to cut methane in overseas barn-fed systems by up to 30 percent. However they are facing a regulatory hurdle in bringing the product to market here as they claim there is no category for which they can file...

Ōpōtiki dairy farm’s jammed irrigator pollutes waterway

[26 July/Stuff] An Ōpōtiki dairy farm Manager and Senior Farm Assistant have been fined $24,700 after a effluent irrigator discharged 640 times the safe limit into a waterway. The contamination was discovered in October 2016. The Landowner also faced charges but were discharged without conviction for their involvement, but paid reparations of $30,000. The effluent...

DairyNZ says Zero Carbon bill will hurt farmers; Forest and Bird say more needs to be done

[25 July/The Country] DairyNZ is calling for the government to make major changes to the Zero Carbon legislation as it will harm farmers but Forest and Bird report that it is dairy farming that needs to change. DairyNZ Chief Executive Tim Mackle warned that the bill as it stands could reduce dairy farmers’ profits by...

Phosphate ship the Venture Pearl arrives in Tauranga after allegedly ‘hiding’ its destination

[25 July/Stuff NZ] A ship carrying 55,000 tonnes of phosphate from Western Sahara arrived in Tauranga last week, having “disguised” its destination during its eight weeks at sea, according to activists. The phosphate will be turned into Superphosphate and spread on farms across the country. New Zealand is one of the last remaining markets for...

Report shows value of pesticides to NZ’s economy

[23 July/The Country] A report from the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research has revealed that without pesticides, crops would lose 30 percent of their value overall. Agcarm Chief Executive, Mark Ross, stated that the report highlighted the importance of the crop protection industry to New Zealand’s economy. Agcarm is a not-for-profit trade association, representing...

Emissions target ‘not grounded in science’

[23 July / DairyNews] DairyNZ has voiced to Parliament strong opposition to some aspects of the Zero Carbon Bill. Thousands of groups and individuals placed submissions on the Bill and in October, parliament’s environment select committee will hear these and report. DairyNZ agrees with much of the Bill but opposes the proposal to reduce emissions...

Making history in unravelling emissions

[23 July / Dairy News] 11 primary sector groups have agreed to work with the government to tackle climate change and include DairyNZ, Federated Farmers, Beef + Lamb NZ. The 11 groups make up nearly half NZ’s total emissions and jointly are the largest contributor to our greenhouse gas emissions. The groups are working together...

Ravensdown takes big picture view on new carbon target

[22 July / Scoop] Ravensdown has declared its first ever carbon target as the company makes moves towards meeting the 2030 greenhouse gas emissions reduction target to make a start on contributing to New Zealand’s Paris Agreement obligations as a founding member of the Climate Leaders Coalition. The company will report carbon emissions publicly, to...

Government needs to look at genetic modification: Shaw

[18 July / The Country] Climate Change Minister James Shaw says that the government will have to look at the genetic modification laws following the report from the Interim Climate Change Committee. The report released states that genetic modification could help with lowering emissions. The report also stated that the rules in New Zealand could...

Website gives emissions advice for farmers

[18 July / Farmers Weekly] A new website has been set up which aims to equip farmers and rural professionals with the knowledge they need to assess and manage on-farm emissions. The website, created by the Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre, focuses on methane but will soon expand to include information about nitrous oxide and...

Aerial 1080 drop planned for head of Lake Wakatipu

[18 July / The Country] A 19,000ha piece of land at Lake Wakatipu is set to have an aerial drop of 1080 in an attempt to control rat numbers as they increase due to the beech forest ‘mega mast’. Department of Conservation (DoC) said up to 15,000 seeds were falling per square metre in the...

Primary sector’s commitment to reducing emissions

(16 July/Rural news) Primary sector leaders have developed a five-year work plan to support and accelerate the actions needed to reduce emissions by the agriculture sector. The Primary Sector Climate Change Commitment, is a framework that leaders hope the government will take into account the option of creating a joint action plan. The goal of...

Climate change’s ‘thermal squeeze’ – predators and climate change – hurting our birds

(16 July/The Country) A recently published study has indicated that New Zealand needs to increase its efforts on trapping pests as some of our threatened native birds experience a ‘thermal squeeze’ due to increased pest numbers and climate change. Researchers had suspected that climate change would have been allowing predator numbers to flourish, increasing the...

Farmers: Emissions plan may not be as great a deal as it appears

(16 July/Stuff) The recent proposal from the Government’s Interim Climate Change Committee (ICCC) reports that farmers will be exempt from 95 percent of emission charges and has left primary industry leaders with concerns. There are three main recommendations of the ICCC: to introduce a levy or rebate on farmers by 2025, interim charge on processors...

Farmers ponder future that contains emissions bill

(16 July/Stuff) With the recent rising cost of emissions, dairy farmers Humphrey and Fiona O’Leary are reconsidering their options. Mr O’Leary runs a low-cost farming operation of 270 cows and has reported that he will wait and see what decision is reached by the Interim Climate Change Committee in regards to emission costs. He said...

Biofuel can be good alternative for woodlot owners

(14 July/Scoop) It is being reported that New Zealand logs are sitting on wharves in China unsold due to cheap, sawn timber coming into the country from Russia and Scandinavia. Consequently, woodlot owners are being told to look at other options for their logs. Executive officer of the Bioenergy Association Brian Cox says that woodlot...

How cow pee insights could help NZ tackle emissions

(14 July/The Country) It is now thought that urine patches could hide the secret to part of New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions. Massey University researcher Nicholaas Portegys is investigating how the emissions from the patches behave in the soil and how the emissions may be captured and not leak into the environment. The patches of...

Fonterra declares war on waste

(10 July/Rural News) Fonterra will stop sending waste to the landfill by 2025 it reported in a recent statement and will be using 100% recyclable, reusable or compostable packaging by then. Fonterra’s Director of sustainability Carolyn Mortland commented that 90% of Fonterra products that are sold in New Zealand are already recyclable and now the...

A company going public within a year is getting a $15 million Provincial Growth Fund loan

(8 July/The Country) Geothermal company Geo40, who is expecting to list on the Australian Stock market, is set to receive a loan of $15 million from the Provincial Growth Fund. It is expected that $5 million of that loan will be converted to shares after the initial public offering. Geo40 plans to have its IPO...