17 Jan 2009

Electricity group wants emissions scheme deferred

8:20 am on 17 January 2009

The Major Electricity Users Group wants the Government to consider deferring the Emissions Trading Scheme in light of the economic crisis.

Executive director Ralph Matthes says all policies that might affect employment, including the ETS, need to be considered at the Government's employment summit in February.

Mr Matthes says when the scheme was enacted last year, it was expected to only have a small impact on gross domestic product, because growth was expected to be positive.

However, he says now that the New Zealand economy looks so grim, anything to take the pressure off should be considered.

Mr Matthes says New Zealand has time to sort out its response to climate change, but job losses are being felt now.

Environmental group Greenpeace warns any delays to the Emissions Trading Scheme would be very serious, as climate change will get worse the longer it is left.

It says investing in green initiatives will boost the economy and ensure that New Zealand can still rely on trading on its clean green image.