Consultation on the Sustainable Biofuels Obligation

Submissions closed: 01 July 2022, 5pm

The Government previously consulted on a proposal to increase the use of sustainable liquid biofuels in New Zealand to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from transport. The discussion document, produced by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and the Ministry of Transport, outlined the development of regulations to enact the Sustainable Biofuels Obligation.

About the consultation

Biofuels are fuels that are made from renewable biomass such as plants. As plants that a biofuel is made from grow, they absorb GHG emissions. When the biofuel is combusted, roughly the same amount of GHG emissions is released.

Liquid biofuels are a renewable, low-emissions fuel that can help reduce GHG emissions from transport. They are not as dependent on new fuel infrastructure or new vehicles as other ways of reducing GHG emissions (for example, electric vehicles or hydrogen fuel cell vehicles).

Currently, the use of biofuels in New Zealand is very low and there is limited domestic production.

In July 2021, consultation occurred on the increasing the use of sustainable biofuels in Aotearoa New Zealand. In October 2021, Cabinet agreed to the final policy design of the Sustainable Biofuels Obligation. More information can be found here:

Increasing the use of sustainable biofuels in Aotearoa New Zealand

The discussion document looked at the development of the regulations that would support the enactment of the Sustainable Biofuels Obligation, including calculating the obligation, the details of the sustainability criteria, and how the obligation would interact with other regulations and government policies.

After the Ministry of Business and Innovation and the Ministry of Transport considered all of the submissions, Cabinet then considered proposals on regulatory options to support the introduction of the Sustainable Biofuels Obligation.

Submissions closed at 5pm Friday 1 July 2022.

Consultation documents


Submissions closed on 1 July 2022 and a total of 24 submissions were received. They represented the views of a range of stakeholders including fuel importers, fuel retailers, biofuel producers, industry and advocacy organisations and local government.

Summary of Submissions – Consultation on the Sustainable Biofuels Obligation(external link)

Personal contact details have been redacted from the submissions.

Some submissions have not been published at the request of submitters.

Last updated: 12 July 2023