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Saturday, August 9, 2014 - 05:28

New figures showing taxpayers forked out nearly $6 million in the last year on free pollution permits to Rio Tinto show the emissions trading scheme (ETS) must go, the Green Party said today.

According to the figures, the number of free New Zealand Units (NZUs) allocated to New Zealand Aluminium Smelters Ltd (part of Rio Tinto Alcan) under the ETS jumped from 300,000 in 2012 to over 1.5 million in 2013.

At today's spot NZU price of $3.90, that amounts to $5.85 million worth of credits. Allocations to several other big polluters have also risen.

Saturday, August 9, 2014 - 05:28

The Green Party has announced today that its economic priority for the election is building a smarter greener economy that benefits every New Zealander.

In the Party's headline economic announcement, the Greens have launched their plan to build a smarter, more innovative economy which has as its centrepiece an additional $1 billion of government investment in research and development (R&D) above current spend, including tax breaks for business.

The key policy points in the Green Party's plan for an innovative economy are:

Julie Anne Genter MP
Saturday, August 9, 2014 - 05:28

The Green Party welcomed the Environmental Protection Authority's draft decision announced today not to allow the $90 million Basin Reserve flyover in Wellington to proceed.

"Both popular and expert opinion opposed the flyover. The proposal was expensive, unnecessary and would have undermined the Basin's heritage value," said Green Party transport spokesperson Julie Anne Genter.