Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Where can households make a difference to their emissions?

by Ceridwyn Roberts, Motu Economic and Public Policy Research

Motu has just released new research identifying where households can make a real difference to their greenhouse gas emissions – and cutting down on red meat and purchasing an electric vehicle are top of the list.

Corey Allan, Suzi Kerr and Campbell Will looked at information from the 2006/7 and 2012/13 Household Economic Surveys1 and found many opportunities for ordinary Kiwis to reduce their impact on climate change.

While most households are taking at least some actions that reduce emissions, the actions they are choosing are not necessarily the ones that will have the biggest emission benefits. To give the general public more information about what sources of emissions have the most impact, Suzi and Corey worked with ChewyData and the NZ Herald to compile The Household Climate Action Tool, hosted by NZ Herald Insights. This uses averages of annual spending and household purchases to help people figure out their household’s best choices to reduce emissions.

Monday, 2 November 2015

Clearing the air on methane

by Zack Dorner

Agricultural emissions, caused in part by lots of cows and sheep burping, are responsible for around half of all of New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions. New Zealand faces “unusually high costs to cut greenhouse gas emissions” due to the large number of livestock in the country, or so the government is continuing to argue. With Suzi Kerr, I’ve just released a Motu Working Paper looking at methane emissions from NZ agriculture, which comprise 30% of NZ’s agricultural emissions (with 18% being from nitrous oxide), so it seems timely to look at some of the issues regarding methane, and hopefully clear the air on this confusing and complicated topic!