Recently in an announcement on climate change action, the New Zealand government announced that it is going to help people to buy electric vehicles to end their reliance on fossil fuels, lower agricultural emissions, and reduce waste going to landfills. New Zealand has introduced an interesting strategy to subsidize electric vehicle purchases in the country.

 

This novel idea to minimize greenhouse gas emissions sets a new direction for climate change action for the next 15 years.

At the parliament, the New Zealand government announced the details of the first strategy that will tackle climate change and greenhouse gas emissions and how it will subsidize electric vehicle purchases.

 

“This is a landmark day in our transition to a low emissions future,” said Jacinda Ardern, prime minister of New Zealand.

“The emissions reduction plan delivers the greatest opportunity we’ve had in decades to address climate change,” Ardern said. “We can’t opt out of the effects of climate change so we can’t opt out of taking action.”

electric vehicle
Electric vehicle  Image: Getty Images

According to the minister of climate change, James Shaw, the new plan would pave the road towards a net-zero future where more people could buy electric vehicles, cities would have great transport infrastructure, the top carbon emitters would switch to clean energy, farmers would grow food in a way that helps the climate, and warmer, more affordable heating options for homes would exist.

 

“This is a historic day for climate action in Aotearoa,” Shaw said. “Because of this work, New Zealand is on track to bend the curve of its emissions downwards for the first time in its history.”

 

The clean car upgrade program is one of the most significant initiatives by the government. This initiative will support lower and middle-income families to transition to low-emission alternatives through a “scrap and replace” trial. This bright plan will allow middle and low-income families to trade in their vehicles and receive support to buy electric or hybrid vehicles, which will in turn be cheaper to run.

 

 

The government is planning to improve the public transportation system through greener bus fleets, better cycleways and walkways, and more frequent trains. This plan will put the country on track to make zero-emission vehicles 30% of the light vehicle fleet (cars, vans, and utes) and reduce the total kilometers light vehicles travel by 20% by 2035.

 

The government had allocated more than $1.2bn towards this part of the plan. The country expects the plan will reduce emissions equivalent to taking 181,000 cars off the road between now and 2035.

The fund was established using an initial $4.5bn from the emissions trading scheme. The emission trading scheme charges certain businesses for the greenhouse gases they emit – and meant “the polluters are paying [for pollution], not households.”

 

A fraction of that fund (around $1.3bn) has been set aside for international climate aid, with half committed to the Pacific. Another $1.5bn will be earmarked for future budgets.

New Zealand’s goal is to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 and the country is hopefully expecting 30 percent of its light vehicle fleet to become all-electric by 2035.

Source : Optimist Daily

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