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  • Nga Ngaru

Climate Change announcement could be a boom for Maori jobs and business as well as being good for th

The New Zealand Government have announced sweeping changes to how the nation will deal with climate change covering transport and infrastructure right through to agriculture. They are the single largest reforms in a generation and are expected to set the benchmark for addressing climate change moving forward. With more and more Maori assets, infrastructure and communities at risk from rising sea levels, the reforms have been welcomed. In particular Embedding Te Tiriti and mātauranga Māori into research, science and innovation. Matthew Tukaki, Chair of the National Maori Authority has said that Maori will benefit across all areas but at the same time need to be in control of programs that impact their infrastructure:

“We know the realities of climate change because its already impacting our communities from Maketu and Tomomaru Bay through to further inland of river deltas and our native flora and fauna. What is great about this policy announcement today by the Government is the inclusion of Matauranga Maori and the Treaty into research, science and innovation. I would strongly argue that Maori can play a central role in our fight against climate change because of the very practices even Prince Harry acknowledges. The Tiaki promise, kaitiakiship and more” Tukaki said

Tukaki also welcomed the Governments announcement in terms of the clean car program and said that further investment to support low income whanau to transition away from the gas guzzlers was also a good approach.

Of note was the work needed to be done in the primary industries and agricultural sectors with Tukaki saying Maori were dominant players and the investments needed to both transition and sustain were important:

“The 35.4 million to support a just transition for farmers and growers and whenua Maori is innovative and over time I would like to see that investment grow – particularly as a ways and means for further transition. Maori are estimated to have ownership or stewardship of more between 10-40% of all dairy, beef, lamb and kiwifruit in this country as well as significant ownership primary production” Tukaki said

“The forestry industry is also one where Maori play a key role so we need to ensure the protection of both our assets and income streams while also continuing to play our role when it comes the sequestering of Carbon – and their might be some innovative and creative ways we might do that – for example, many think of forestry as on land activity but there is some great emerging science about New Zealands significant kelp farms off shore – in other words, the more than $256 million being set aside could also be used to invest not just transition – either way my call is for Maori to start thinking now about new job and employment opportunities in the sectors that will grow in the years to come – so lets put the call out now for more of our people to enter into the fields of climate science, carbon sequestration, sustainable foods and fibre sectors – lets see this as an opportunity” Tukaki said

Transport: $1.3b from CERF

  • $569m 'Scrap and replace' scheme for Clean Car programme with 2500 vehicles covered in initial trial

  • $20m leasing scheme for low-emission vehicles for low-income families, starting in three communities from early next year

  • $350m for improving access to low-impact transport like walking, cycling and public transport

  • $23m to develop transport programmes for developing strategies for increasing use of active and shared transport

  • $40m for decarbonising public transport buses by 2035

  • $20m for decarbonising freight transport

  • $61m to support bus driver workforce

  • Improving EV charging infrastructure

  • Further $100m to $217m initiatives to be announced on Budget Day

The improvements to access for low-emitting transport includes a rapid rollout for of at least 100km of urban cycleways; safety improvements in 25 pedestrian areas; improving school transport for 75-100 schools; bus priority upgrades for 40 locations.

Agriculture and forestry: $710m over four years from CERF

  • $339m to accelerate technology , including establishing a Centre for Climate Action on Agricultural Emissions

  • $256.2m to boost forestry to help with carbon sequestration

  • $73.5m from Budget 2022 for forestry to increase use of woody biomass as an alternative to coal

  • Over $6m to support implementation of He Waka Eke Noa

  • $35.4m to support a just transition for farmers, growers and whenua Māori

  • The Sustainable Food and Fibre Future Fund for industry-led innovation with more than 170 farmer-led catchment groups

Energy: total seven-year spend of $1b

  • $650m for the GIDI fund for decarbonising industry over four years, plus $25m already allocated in previous Budgets and planning for about $330m in future years

  • $18m for developing energy strategies and frameworks

  • $5m for electricity market and renewables work

  • About $40m for heating efficiency in commercial spaces and water

  • About $330m for energy efficiency improvements for businesses

Other areas:

  • Work owards nationwide kerbside food waste collection by 2030

  • Investment in waste infrastructure like composting, organic processing and resource recovery facilities

  • Warmer Kiwi Homes Initiative to support in-home heating and insulation upgrades

  • Increased insulation standards

  • Pest control initiatives to help native ecosystems thrive and remove more carbon

  • Continuing the work of the Carbon Neutral Government Programme, which is backed by the State Sector Decarbonisation Fund

  • All municipal landfills to have gas capture systems by 2026

  • Embedding Te Tiriti and mātauranga Māori into research, science and innovation

  • Increasing research and development spending across Aotearoa to 2 percent of GDP by 2030

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