New Zealand's Climate Change Commission Provides Comprehensive Solutions

New Zealand’s Climate Change Commission, He Pou a Rangi ("a Pillar of the Sky"), recently released a Draft Advice for Consultation Report that describes necessary steps to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address climate change.

February 16, 2021, 11:00 AM PST

By Todd Litman

New Zealand

Fall in Queenstown, New Zealand. | chingfoto / Shutterstock

New Zealand’s Climate Change CommissionHe Pou a Rangi (Māori for “A Pillar of the Sky”) provides independent advice to governments on all aspects of climate mitigation for Aotearoa (Māori for "New Zealand") and addresses broader social goals including social equity, public health, broad environmental protection goals, and strategic development, in addition to climate action.

On February 1, 2021, He Pou a Rangi released a Draft Advice for Consultation Report that describes steps Aotearoa (the Māori name for New Zealand) must take to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address climate change. Public consultation on the report runs until Sunday, March 14. Commission Chair Dr. Rod Carr describes the advice as ambitious but realistic, and makes a clear case to Government for taking immediate and decisive action on climate change. He explains,

"As a country we need transformational and lasting change to meet our targets and ensure a thriving Aotearoa for future generations. The good news is that our analysis shows there are technically achievable, economically affordable and socially acceptable paths for Aotearoa to take. But the Government must move faster - and support business, agriculture and community to do the same. The Commission has spent the last year working on what is now the most comprehensive strategy Aotearoa has for reducing its emissions and impact on the climate."


  • This draft advice explains how Aotearoa can reach net zero emissions for long-lived gases by 2050, as outlined in the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Act.
  • Following consultation, the Commission will incorporate feedback before finalising the advice and presenting it to the Government by May 31 2021.
  • The Government then has until December 31 to decide whether to accept recommendations in the advice. If the Government chooses not to take on the Commission’s advice, it must publish an alternative plan for reaching net zero.
  • The Climate Change Commission is an independent crown entity. Our independence means it can provide impartial advice, challenge and hold the government of the day to account for action on climate change.

Friday, February 12, 2021 in He Pou a Rangi Draft Advice for Consultation

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