John Key just rumbles on from one lame excuse to the next on putting agriculture in the ETS.
First he said that it would raise milk and cheese prices: wrong.
Now he’s saying both that National won’t make our agriculture sector account for their emissions before others do, and that farmers can’t do anything about their livestocks emissions. He’s just making more shit up.
National have legislated to bring agriculture in in 2015. Nobody will have brought agriculture in by then. He hasn’t said anything about changing that, but if that’s what he’s proposing, he has several hundred million worth each year of cuts or tax-rises he needs to tell us about. Either there’s no substantive difference between National’s position and Labour’s (other than an $800 million handout to farmers), or he’s not balancing the books.
And anyone who’s ever eaten a curry knows there a strong connection between what you put in and what you get out. Different feed produces different emissions. Kiwifruit & clover produce almost as much hot air from cows as you get from John Key; other feed will improve things. There are many different things farmers can do to reduce emissions, which some farmers have had great success with – even before the agricultural research and development we really need.
Sheep farmers have done well to make changes and many will actually benefit from the scheme as they will have reduced their emissions more than 10% below 2005 levels. They may want to consider whether they want to keep subsidising their dairy cousins.
Do you want to pay the farmers’ tax for them? We can’t subsidise our nation’s biggest industry – last time we tried that we got skinny sheep syndrome and near bankruptcy. We need to ride on the back of the cow, not have it ride us.