NZ 'far from doing its fair share' on climate change - agencies

The government's new emissions reduction target amounts to little more than creative accounting, a group of climate change agencies say.

Emissions (file). Source:

Climate Change minister Tim Groser announced last week New Zealand would cut emissions to 30 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030.

The current target is five per cent below 1990 levels by 2020, and the new target is 11 per cent below those 1990 emission levels.

Analysis undertaken by four NGOs indicates the self-set target is inadequate and "far from doing its fair share" on the global stage.

"While most other governments intend cutting emissions, New Zealand appears to be increasing emissions, and hiding this through creative accounting," Climate Analytics chief executive Bill Hare said.

"It may not have to take any action at all to meet either its 2020 or 2030 targets."

The Climate Action Tracker analysis, undertaken by four European research organisations, reveals if most countries followed New Zealand's lead global warming would exceed 3-4C - double the international goal of temperatures rising no more than 2C.

This would lead to oceans acidifying, coral reefs dissolving, sea levels rising rapidly, and more than 40 per cent species extinction, they said today.

"New Zealand's climate policy is projected to head in the opposite direction from the worlds biggest emitters such as China, the United States and the European Union," Ecofys scientist professor Kornelis Blok said.

"It has taken little or no action on climate change since 2008 except for watering down its ETS, and we can find no evidence of any policies that would change this."