In a world-first climate levy, New Zealand plans to tax the gases released by the bodily functions of it 36 million cows and sheep.
The policy which was announced on Tuesday would be the first in the world to place a levy on cow farts and burps a as well as sheep pee.
The Arden government’s net zero plan includes a pledge to reduce methane emissions from farm animals by 10 per cent by 2030 and by up to 47 per cent by 2050.
MSN reports: The move was immediately condemned by New Zealand’s powerful farming sector.
Farmers warned it risked crippling domestic food production, with Federated Farmers, the industry’s main lobby group, saying the plan would “rip the guts out of small town New Zealand” and see farms replaced with trees.
The group’s president Andrew Hoggard said farmers had been trying to work with the government for more than two years on an emissions reduction plan that would “keep farmers farming”.
The proposed levy, he said, would lead farmers to sell their farms “so fast you won’t even hear the dogs barking on the back of the ute [a pick-up truck] as they drive off”.
Opposition politicians argued the plan would increase worldwide emissions by moving farming to other countries that were less efficient at making food.