Skip to comments.Farmers to be taxed on livestock flatulence (New Zealand's Global Warming Wackos Alert)
Posted on 06/22/2003 2:13:48 PM PDT by DannyTN
Farmers will be taxed on the flatulence of their livestock in an attempt to slow New Zealand's contribution to global warming.
The levy could cost a typical family farmer up to $300 a year. Larger corporate farmers could pay up to $10,000.
Sheep will be levied at nine cents each and cows at up to 72 cents under the Government's proposals.
The money will be used for research on emission reductions needed to meet New Zealand's commitment to lower greenhouse gas emissions under the Kyoto protocol.
The new Agriculture Emissions Research body will be funded by sheep, cattle, deer and goat farmers to the tune of $8.4 million a year, which has infuriated farming organisations.
"That's overkill." Meat New Zealand chairman Jeff Grant said. "This is a public good rather than an industry good. It should be funded by the Government not farmers."
Livestock accounts for about half of New Zealand's total greenhouse gas emissions.
The emissions are caused by the complex process of digesting grass and are belched into the air.
The levy was bad news at the worst possible time for farmers suffering from a high dollar, low commodity prices and drought conditions, Grant said.
The sector was already funding its own research through the Pastoral Greenhouse Gas Research Consortium (PGGRC), he said.
Less than one year old, the PGGRC is an industry body comprised of representatives from Fonterra, AgResearch, Wrightson, DeerResearch and Meat New Zealand.
Together the participants are investing $800,000 per year on emission research. The Government has supported that group by matching its investment - taking its total funding to $1.6 million.
PGGRC chairman Mark Leslie said the levy was "a real kick in the teeth for the consortium."
The latest Government recommendations simply mirrored those that the PGGRC already had in place, he said.
"The Government is basically telling the industry consortium that 'it is too little to late' after giving us less than a year to prove ourselves," he said.
Throwing money at the issue wasn't necessarily going to speed things up, he said.
Time was needed to train skilled researchers and to understand how the digestion process worked. "This is PGGRC's strategy yet the Government has decided it knows best," he said.
Agriculture minister Jim Sutton is overseas but in a statement he argued the agriculture sector had been exempted from emission charges in the climate change policy but was expected to meet the costs of research.
The Government will introduce an emissions tax for other industries in 2007.
Federated Farmers president Tom Lambie said the levy disadvantaged New Zealand farmers struggling to compete in the world markets.
"As far as I'm aware we're the only country in the world to impose a levy like this," he said.
The Government needed to stop passing the buck to rural New Zealand for the Kyoto commitments it made on behalf of all New Zealanders, he said.
Farmers will have until July 31 to voice their concerns although the Government has stressed consultation will be about how the levy is paid not if it will be paid.
It has decided against a levy on the pig and poultry sectors as these represent less than one per cent of agricultural emissions.
NZ is very restrictive of legal immigration, and enforces against illegal immigration. Interesting place--a beautiful island smug in its isolation, but awfully close to North Korea.
I was thinking, if only we could capture it. All that hot air would solve the energy crisis.
Other moves afoot include legislation for lesbians to be legal fathers; legislation drafted to ensure Maori tribes take ownership of foreshores and ocean beds and the widely known disbanding or our airforce to fund the arts The arts includes the gay vote in New Zealand. The move to tax cow farts under the feel good Kyoto Protocol will assist in the aspect of agricultural economic deconstruction. In short, the country is being taken apart by Helen Clark's Labour Party.
,,, yes it is an interesting place, but close to North Korea? Maybe politically, but about the same distance as you are to Argentina. BTW, New Zealand isn't just one island.
Really every American livestock farmer and grain producer should be thanking George Bush right now for rejecting Kyoto.
I can picture some Rat compaigning on Bush's failure to uphold Kyoto only to have some conservative bring up New Zealand's livestock flatulence tax.
,,, I'd go along with that. Where I am, we've just had the driest summer since 1968.
|So, if the farmers allow their cows to actually take a dump, does that mean firing squad at dawn?|
Any estimates yet on how much gas 40,000,000 buffalo emitted before Buffalo Bill Cody came and saved the planet?
This must be documented for a cow or sheep, you understand. Don't want anyone to be over or under charged.
Well actually that is a very good question. "Who did document how much greenhouse gas a cow produces? And did they have an agenda when they did?"
I shared that vision, and it was funny, until I realized that we probably have already paid some stupid liberal probably associated with PETA through a grant to measure this so that our beef could be taxed.