MPI issues Forestry ETS announcement

In order to manage high work volumes in the lead up to the end of the current Mandatory Emission Return (MER) period – 31 December 2017, MPI has been forced to hire more staff and review its processes to increase processing capacity.

MPI advises that to increase the likelihood of applications to register post-1989 forest land in the ETS being processed by 31 December 2017, the full application should be submitted by 16 October 2017.

It advised that all applications received after 1 October 2017 will not have a preliminary GIS assessment issued. Instead, the eligibility of land to be registered into the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will be decided, and a final assessment will be issued. MPI requests that all additional information that submitters wish to provide in support of their application is provided at the point of submission to MPI.

As MPI is temporarily removing the preliminary GIS assessment, it says there will be no stage in the assessment process where submitters are prompted to supply additional evidence documents. Therefore, all supporting information which submitters wish to be considered by MPI when assessing land eligibility must be provided prior to assessment.

Further options being developed for Forestry in the NZ ETS

MPI and the Ministry for the Environment (MfE) are currently developing advice for options moving forward. Ministers will receive this advice by mid-2018, which will include:

  • options for changing the post-1989 accounting approach; and
  • options to improve operational efficiency
  • Two possible changes to post-1989 accounting which were considered during the review will also be put forward to Ministers, specifically:
  • accounting for carbon stored in harvested wood products; and
  • applying an averaging accounting approach

For more information on the Forestry ETS  click here.