Call for evidence: Emissions reduction targets and emissions budgets

Closes 31 Jul 2023

Opened 31 Mar 2023


We are calling for evidence on Aotearoa New Zealand's emissions reduction targets and emissions budgets.

Submissions to this call for evidence will contribute to three areas of work that are currently underway:

  • preparing advice for the fourth emissions budget period (2036-2040), and potential revision of emissions budgets one, two, and three
  • reviewing whether emissions from international shipping and aviation should be included in the emissions reduction target ('the 2050 target')
  • undertaking the inaugural five-yearly review of the emissions reduction target ('the 2050 target')

More Information

Aotearoa New Zealand's domestic 2050 target has three components, shown in the figure below:
components of the domestic 2050 target
  • The 'net zero' component means that the Government can decide how to get to 2050 via a combination of gross reductions (fewer greenhouse gas emissions) and removals (capturing carbon dioxide by natural or artificial means).
  • The other two components are focused on biogenic methane. These are gross targets rather than net targets, meaning efforts need to be focused on reducing the amount of biogenic methane added to the atmosphere.
    • By 2030, we need to lower biogenic methane emissions by 10% from 2017 levels.
    • By 2050, we need to lower biogenic methane by 24 to 47% from 2017 levels.
  • Under the Climate Change Response Act (the Act), emissions need to be reduced to those levels by 2050, and then maintained for every year thereafter. The targets are also considered to be met if the emission reductions exceed the levels in the Act.
  • Collectively the three components of the target are described as 'the 2050 target' in the Act, and for simplicity we use this term for the remainder of this call for evidence.

All three of these are focused on Aotearoa New Zealand's options for contributing to the global effort under the Paris Agreement to limit global average temperature increase to 1.5°C above preindustrial levels.

You can share your evidence with us using this online survey. If you would prefer to send us your evidence by mail, our address is:

Call for evidence: emissions reduction targets and emissions budgets 
Climate Change Commission 
PO Box 24448 
Wellington 6142 

If you have any questions about completing this call for evidence, you can reach us by email at

Why are we doing this?

The Commission's functions are set out in the Climate Change Response Act and include a requirement to review and advise on the 2050 target and emissions budgets.

Engagement is at the heart of what we do. We will be engaging widely with people on our advice. This is the first stage in the process, and there will be other opportunities to feed into our work.

Timeline for this work, with final advice delivered to the Minister and published by the end of 2024

We are running this call for evidence now as we build our evidence base to inform our analysis and draft advice. Final advice on the three projects is due to be delivered to the Minister of Climate Change by 31 December 2024. To ensure sufficient time for careful consideration of a wide range of evidence, we are seeking your submissions now.

What are we looking for?

We are looking for high-quality, credible evidence, across the broad spectrum of knowledge including Western science and evidence from an ao Māori view and mātauranga Māori, that will support the Commission's work on Aotearoa New Zealand's climate change emissions reduction targets and emissions budgets.

We are not looking for views or opinions through this call for evidence – these will be sought through other avenues over the course of our work. Further details on the sort of information we are seeking are included in the response form.

What if I have already made submissions on similar topics?

If you have already submitted evidence as part of consultation run by Government agencies or another process that you think we should know about, please direct us to those submissions. It would be helpful to note the key information or material that relates to our call for evidence.

What will we do with the evidence we gather?

We will use this information to inform our initial work on Aotearoa New Zealand's climate change emissions reduction targets and emissions budgets, and add to the evidence base the Commission considers. We may publish all or part of written responses, including the names of respondents, on our website ( or on this site (

Share your evidence with us