E-Mission Possible: Expert roundtables on thorny questions for a net-zero New Zealand

Published: 2017

Authors: Suzi Kerr, Catherine Leining, David Fleming

These roundtables will be convened by Motu in collaboration with the New Zealand Productivity Commission, the Institute for Governance and Policy Studies at Victoria University of Wellington, and the Environmental Defence Society.

The road to our net-zero future is paved with challenging questions for which there are no definitive answers – just choices to be made under uncertainty and consequences to be faced under risk.

Four half-day roundtables will bring together diverse experts from New Zealand and overseas to shed new light on particularly thorny questions for New Zealand’s low-emission transition. They will be convened by Motu Economic and Public Policy Research in collaboration with the New Zealand Productivity Commission, the Institute for Governance and Policy Studies at Victoria University of Wellington, and the Environmental Defence Society.

Unlocking our low-emission future (November 2017)

  • What actions are needed now to preserve desirable pathway options, and where can we be confident enough to start making choices?
  • What new tools, institutions, and processes would help achieve a faster net-zero transition?

Mitigation in the land sector (December 2017)

  • Is there a case for transformational change in our agriculture sector?
  • How should our policies value short- versus long-term climate damages?

Low-emission investment and ETS reform (February 2018)

  • What critical changes cannot be achieved by a reformed ETS alone, and what else is needed?
  • How should New Zealand invest in mitigation overseas?

Directing mitigation policy and action for results (April 2018)

  • Where do we need to align climate change and other policies to deliver on our targets, and how could we assist those vulnerable to change?
  • How, when, and to what extent could New Zealand become a fast adopter of international innovation, and what could derail our low-emission transition?

Content

Each roundtable will include keynote addresses by distinguished international experts, presentations by Motu researchers, responses from an expert panel and audience participation. Discussions will contribute to the Productivity Commission’s inquiry into Opportunities and Challenges of a Transition to a Lower Net Emissions Economy for New Zealand, commissioned by the New Zealand government.

Participation in the first three roundtables will be limited and by invitation only. For each roundtable, presentations by keynote speakers and Motu researchers may be made public. Discussions involving panellists and audience members will be held under the spirit of the Chatham House Rule, where participants are free to use the information received, but neither the identity nor the affiliation of the speaker(s) may be revealed. However, individuals may choose to disclose publicly their own participation in the roundtable and contribution to the discussions.

The fourth roundtable will be open to the public and will take place after the Productivity Commission has released its draft report.

The organisers gratefully acknowledge additional funding support from the Aoteoroa Foundation, Productivity Commission of New Zealand, and others.

Programme

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Title

Date

Keynote 

1

Unlocking our low-emission future

29 Nov 2017

Prof Charles Kolstad, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research

2

Mitigation in the land sector

8 Dec 2017

Dr Andy Resinger, Deputy Director, NZ Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre

3

Low-emission investment and ETS reform

14 Feb 2018

Dr Mario Herrero, Chief Research Scientist, Agriculture Flagship, CSIRO, Australia

4

Directing mitigation policy and action for results

Apr 2018

Prof Cameron Hepburn, Oxford University
and Jason Gray, California Air Resources Board

Funders

Aotearoa Foundation, Ministry for the Environment, Productivity Commission of New Zealand