The Government announced a $4.5 billion plan to meet its climate change ambitions, including potentially banning high-emitting vehicles and increasing the use of electric/hybrid cars.
One incentive is a $579 million scrap-and-replace scheme where low-income families can get rid of their current car and receive funding for a cleaner alternative.
Likewise, the current transport sector will get some heavy investments to decarbonise and make itself cleaner.
This includes $ 40m for decarbonising public transport buses by 2035, $20m for freight transport, and $350m for improving access to low-impact transportation like walking and cycling.
All of this is part of the Government’s new Emissions Reduction Plan.
“[This is the] most significant day in our country’s history on climate action,” Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson said.
The Plan aims to have 30 per cent of the country’s light vehicle fleet fully electric by 2035. By that year, public transport also aims to be carbon zero.
Interestingly, the Plan does not consider the current ‘energy crisis’ and whether the temporary tax cut on fuel will continue. Instead, Robertson said it is “under review.”
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said addressing climate change will soften the effect of the global crisis.
“Reducing our reliance on fossil fuels will shield households from the volatility of international price hikes which reducing transport and energy bills.”
There is no current plan for a congestion charge in Auckland. However, that could change, and an announcement is expected later this year.
Overall, the Plan is exceptionally vague and confusing.
It projects having Kiwis less reliant on cars for travel. Similarly, it mentions e-bikes as a significant player in the future public transport sector.