19 May 2010

Fresh debate about ETS at grower meetings

6:40 pm on 19 May 2010

Grower meetings around the country are sparking fresh debate about the emissions trading scheme.

Horticulture New Zealand and the Ministry for the Environment are currently meeting greenhouse growers, or those that produce their crops under cover, to see who is eligible for free carbon credits under the scheme.

The Government has widened it to include some small and medium-sized businesses.

The first meeting was in Nelson, where tomato, capsicum and cucumber growers were upset about the implications of the scheme and its extra costs.

Horticulture NZ business manager Chris Ward says it would be beneficial for greenhouse growers to attend the meetings as PricewaterhouseCooper has been commissioned to help them apply for the free carbon credits.

The next meeting is in Kumeu in Auckland on Thursday, with others following in Christchurch, Napier, Pukekohe and Levin.