Low emissions economy
This section is about our work to improve energy efficiency, including lowering greenhouse gas emissions and fostering growth in renewable energy.
Mandatory climate-related financial disclosures
The Government plans to make climate-related financial disclosures mandatory for some organisations. The requirement would apply to publicly listed companies and large insurers, banks and investment managers.
The mandatory regime would be introduced through an amendment to the Financial Markets Conduct Act (2013). Financial entities could be required to make disclosures for financial years commencing in 2022 if the legislation is enacted in 2021.
Purpose of mandatory reporting
The goal of mandatory climate-related financial disclosures is to:
- promote greater transparency and more accurate pricing signals in the market
- incentivise low-emissions investment
- create a level-playing field for businesses already considering climate change in their longer-term risks.
This would help New Zealand meet its international obligations and achieve its target of zero carbon by 2050. It would also help to promote business certainty and provide users of financial reports with higher quality and more comparable information.
Organisations that would have to make disclosures
There are around 200 entities in New Zealand that would be required to produce climate-related financial disclosures (make disclosures).
- All registered banks, credit unions, and building societies with total assets of more than $1 billion.
- All managers of registered investment schemes with greater than $1 billion in total assets under management.
- All licensed insurers with greater than $1 billion in total assets under management or annual premium income greater than $250 million.
- All equity and debt issuers listed on the NZX.
- Crown financial institutions with greater than $1 billion in total assets under management.
More information is available on the Ministry for the Environment website
Cabinet paper and proactive release documents
Earlier discussion documents and Cabinet papers (Ministry for the Environment website)
Environmental management work
The Ministry for the Environment is the government's principal adviser on environmental and climate change issues. However, we also contribute to the development of environmental and climate change policies because of their relevance to energy efficiency and resource development, including:
- Resource Management Act 1991(external link)
- National Policy Statements(external link)
- National Environmental Standards(external link)
- Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf (Environmental Effects) Act 2012(external link)
- Regulations under the Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf (Environmental Effects) Act 2012(external link)
- New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme(external link)
In this section
We’re responsible for advising the Government on energy efficiency policy for New Zealand and we are currently trialling a new renewable energy initiative that aims to improve energy affordability. EECA is responsible for implementing programmes to improve the energy efficiency of New Zealand homes and business.
Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is the process to remove carbon dioxide, from waste gases produced in large-scale industrial processes and permanently store it underground.
We are working with the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority to improve process heat's energy efficiency and increase the input from renewable energy.
Cabinet has approved funding to investigate pumped hydro and other possible energy storage solutions to New Zealand’s dry year electricity problem.