New Zealand traders who trade in a vehicle that pollutes more gas will secure financial assistance to a more sustainable car choice, as one of many global warming measures announced by Jacinda Ardern’s government yesterday.
New Zealand’s first Emissions Reduction Plan, costing nearly three billion NZ dollars (1.88 billion US dollars), outlined spending for the next four years to meet its objective of reducing carbon dioxide emissions to net zero by 2050.
A scrap-and-replace pilot program initially provides 2,500 low-income families financial assistance toward electrification or hybrid vehicle adoption if they replace their gasoline- or diesel-powered vehicle.
Transport Minister Michael Wood said details of the scheme have yet to be finalised, but he looked forward to expanding it to include tens of thousands of New Zealanders.
He also said, The government hopes to spend less money on all cars by 2035 by encouraging people to switch to alternative transport or public transport.
The government also allocated NZ$650 million toward cutting the use of fossil fuels in the industrial sector over the next 4 years.
Investment decisions relating to agricultural technology will be considered critical in a farming-heavy economy.
Conservationists noted the timing of the investment, coming the same day that scientists revealed that they had recorded a mass bleaching of sea sponges in New Zealand waters for the very first time.
An ocean heatwave damaged the sponges in the usual cold waters off Fiordland, in southwest Fiordland, raising concern over the fierce impact climate change is having an aquatic ecosystem in the area.