Government releases first national voluntary emissions offset guidelines

Minister for Climate Change James Shaw has today released New Zealand’s first national guidance for local businesses to voluntarily offset their emissions.

“There is huge appetite in New Zealand to act on climate change and reach net zero carbon dioxide emissions as a country”, James Shaw said today.

“It is going to take all of us, so I am really happy to announce consistent national guidelines that businesses can use to properly offset their emissions. 

“The ambition of many New Zealand businesses to become carbon neutral has led to an increase in demand for voluntary emissions offsets. I am happy that today we are able to provide that.

“The guidance outlines steps and principles that should be met in order for a voluntary offset to be deemed credible.

“Importantly, the first steps to a credible, voluntary offset approach is to measure your emissions, then reduce them as much as practicable. Only after these steps have been undertaken should your remaining emissions be offset.

“The guidance has been designed in collaboration with both offsetting users and providers, including members of the Climate Leaders Coalition,” James Shaw said.

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FACT SHEET: 

  • The guidance was written as part of a collaborative process which included numerous government agencies and local businesses. These businesses included both small and large offsetting providers and users, many of whom are members of the Climate Leaders Coalition.
  • It is intended that the guidance will be updated and reissued prior to December 2020.