Agriculture Minister to attend global climate summit


Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor will travel to Washington DC tomorrow to speak at the Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate Summit being held from 8 – 10 May 2023.

Damien O’Connor will depart for the United States to lead New Zealand’s delegation at the global climate conference to tackle agricultural emissions.

“As we adjust to changing consumer trends and a changing climate, we must continue to support New Zealand farmers and growers to keep up their work reducing on-farm emissions, growing exports, and retaining the sector’s competitive edge in international markets,” Damien O’Connor said.

“Primary sector export revenue hit a record $53.1 billion in the year ending June 2022 and it is key that we continue this momentum. Since 2017 the Government has secured or upgraded seven free trade agreements which bring huge market opportunities for our farmers and growers,” Damien O’Connor said. 

“The Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate Summit is expected to be this year’s milestone event for agriculture and climate change. It is a joint initiative to unite member countries to increase investment and support for climate-smart agriculture and food production by 2025.

“This Summit presents a rare opportunity for an international meeting of Agriculture Ministers to discuss the sustainable reduction of agricultural emissions and the ways in which we can work together to support farmers and growers across the globe to shift the dial on their emissions.

On home soil, the Government has invested more than $380 million over four years for the reduction of agricultural emissions, including the establishment of the Centre for Climate Action on Agricultural Emissions. The Centre has already seen early investment in equipment and infrastructure to measure emissions, funding for climate researchers, and the development of methane inhibitor technology.

The Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate Summit is an opportunity for New Zealand to share and collaborate with international counterparts on the work that we are already doing and on the work that lies ahead.

The summit has been organised by the United States and the United Arab Emirates.

“Export growth for our sector will depend on our sustainability credentials and we’re focussed on working with farmers and growers to be able demonstrate them,” Damien O’Connor said.