Appendix 3: Current state and trends

This section shows the state and trends in relation to the impact measures shown in Figure 2.

1. Climate change

1.1 Trends in greenhouse gas emissions and removals in the annual green house gas inventory

The graph below shows the trend in New Zealand’s total gross greenhouse gas emissions from 1990-2008 (gross emissions exclude any removals of emissions through land use, land-use change and forestry). This is the latest available data as presented in the April 2010 inventory submission to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change secretariat.

Note that net emissions as reported under the Kyoto Protocol have only been reported from 2008 as required under the Protocol so there is currently only one data point available. More trend data will be available as this data is reported in annual inventory submissions.

New Zealand's greenhouse gas emissions 1990-2008

Graph showing New Zealand's greenhouse gas emissions 1990-2008.

The graph shows trends in New Zealand's emissions of greenhouse gases. In 2008, total gross emissions were 75 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent and total net emissions under the Kyoto Protocol were 60.2 million tonnes.

1.2 Trends in greenhouse gas intensity of the economy by emissions per unit of GDP and emissions per capita

The graph below shows the trend in New Zealand’s per capita greenhouse gas emissions from 1990-2008 (on gross emissions basis).

New Zealand's per-capita greenhouse gas emissions 1990-2008

Graph showing New Zealand's per-capita greenhouse gas emissions 1990-2008.

The graph shows trends in per capita greenhouse gas emissions. In 2008, New Zealand's gross emissions were 17.4 tonnes of CO2 equivalent per capita.

The next graph shows New Zealand's gross greenhouse gas emissions divided by GDP from 1990-2008.

New Zealand's greenhouse gas emissions / GDP 1990-2008

Graph showing New Zealand's greenhouse gas emissions / GDP 1990-2008.

The graph shows trends in greenhouse gas emissions per unit of GDP. In 2008, New Zealand emitted 552 tonnes of CO2 equivalent for each million dollars of GDP.

Note that the analysis using population and GDP data for the above graphs is for comparing New Zealand’s domestic progress over time and should not be used for comparisons against other countries. There are other international datasets to be used for that purpose.

1.3 Divergence between forecast net position and Kyoto Protocol Obligations

The projected balance of Kyoto Protocol emissions units is updated once a year in April. The Kyoto Protocol financial position is updated monthly for exchange rate and emissions unit transfers. This updated information is available on the Ministry’s website (www.mfe.govt.nz).

The latest information was updated on 27 January 2011.

1.4 New Zealand’s net position under the Kyoto Protocol

Financial statements period ended 12/2010 6/2010 12/2009 06/2009 12/2008 06/2008
Net position excluding transfers in million units 13.5 13.5 9.6 9.6 (21.7) (21.7)
Net transfers from assigned amount in million units 2.3 2.3 0.5 0 0 0
Net position in million units 11.2 11.2 9.1 9.6 (21.7) (21.7)
Carbon price EURO 10.75 10.75 10.75 10.00 10.00 12.50
Exchange Rate 0.5801 0.5677 0.5054 0.4628 0.4089 0.4829
Carbon price NZD 18.53 18.94 21.27 21.61 24.46 25.89
Value of Net Asset/(liability) NZD 207 212 194 207 (531) (562)

2. Fresh water

2.1 Proportion of water allocated for consumptive purposes that is subject to measurement and reporting

In 2010 there were more than 20,500 resource consents for taking water, mainly for irrigation, hydro-electricity generation, public drinking water supply, industry and stock watering. The total amount of water allocated for consumptive purposes in 2010 was 27 billion cubic metres. The current state figure for this impact measure is that 31 per cent of the allocation is subject to measurement.

The current state figure is based on resource consent data collected from regional councils in 2006 to inform development of the Resource Management (Measurement and Reporting of Water Takes) Regulations 2010. The regulations apply to resource consents that allow fresh water to be taken at a rate of five litres per second or more.

2.2 Number of large surface water catchments that have quantified flow regimes in place that set limits
This is a new measure. Information will be collected in 2011/12.

2.3 Number of significant catchments that have quantified policy for land and water management that sets surface water quality limits

This is a new measure. Information will be collected in 2011/12.

2.4 Number of monitored sites showing improved water quality

The chart below shows the proportion of the 77 National River Water Quality Network sites that have had significantly improving or deteriorating water quality over the 10 years from 2000 to 2009. Total nitrogen is used as an indicator as it gives an idea of nutrient enrichment in rivers, mainly from contaminants such as sewage and agricultural run-off. More sites are deteriorating (29 per cent) than improving (19 per cent), with the majority of sites (52 per cent) showing no significant trend.

Trends in total nitrogen 2000-2009

Graph showing Trends in total nitrogen 2000-2009.

 

This graph shows the proportion of the 77 National River Water Quality Network sites that have had significantly improving or deteriorating water quality over the 10 years from 2000 to 2009. Total nitrogen is used as an indicator as it gives an idea of nutrient enrichment in rivers, mainly from contaminants such as sewage and agricultural run-off. More sites are deteriorating (29 per cent) than improving (19 per cent), with the majority of sites (52 per cent) showing no significant trend.

3. Resource Management

3.2 The national environmental standard for air quality (PM10 fine particulate pollution) is complied with by the target dates in the standard

Compliance with the national environmental standard will reduce air pollution. Heavily polluted airsheds (that exceed the standard more than 10 times a year) will be required to meet the standard by 2020 and all other airsheds will need to meet it by 2016. (An airshed is an area identified by a regional council that is known or is likely to have air quality problems.)

The proportion of airsheds complying with the PM10 standard between 2005 and 2009 remained relatively constant. The national environmental standards for air quality were revised in 2011 following a review, so 2009 information is used here as the baseline for PM10 pollution.

Year Airsheds monitored Polluted airsheds Compliant
2009 44  25 (57%) 19 (43%)

3.2 Trends in EPA and local authority compliance with resource consent processing timeframes under the Resource Management Act 1991

Compliance with statutory resource consent timeframes by the EPA statutory office (within the Ministry) is 100 per cent.

The table below shows the trend in local authority compliance with mandatory resource consent processing timeframes under the Resource Management Act. The 2009/10 figure has been estimated based on information provided in local government annual reports for 2009/10. Updated information will be provided on this website when survey information for 2010/11 is released.

1997/98 1998/99h 1999/00 2001/02 2003/04 2005/06 2007/08 2009/10
78% 82% 82% 82% 77% 73% 69% 84%

4. Treaty commitments

4.1 Percentage of Māori partners in deeds of settlement and environmental accords satisfied or very satisfied with Ministry implementation of obligations

This is a new measure. The Ministry is currently reviewing its processes, procedures and evaluation functions in relation to Treaty of Waitangi commitments. This data will be compiled in the 2011/12 financial year.

4.2 Percentage of relevant Ministry obligations under deeds of settlement and environmental accords met
This is a new measure. The Ministry is currently reviewing its processes, procedures and evaluation functions in relation to treaty commitments. This data will be compiled in the 2011/12 financial year.

5. Environmental hazards and waste

5.1 Changes in the incident data compiled by the Environmental Protection Authority (currently by the Environmental Risk Management Authority) and enforcement agencies under the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act

The table below shows a breakdown in incidents involving hazardous substances and where these incidents had an adverse effect on the environment. The data was compiled and published by the Environmental Risk Management Authority in its ERMA Monitoring Report May 2010.

ERMA has stated that the data may be unreliable for long-term trend analysis because there have been several changes to data sources and databases in the past two years.

  2001/02 2002/03 2003/04 2004/05 2005/06 2006/07 2007/08 2008/09
Number of incidents involving hazardous substances 227 230 216 223 194 237 278 188
Incidents where adverse effects to the environment were recorded 60 67 28 63 64 98 129 60

5.2 Trends in the tonnage of waste disposed of at waste disposal facilities per unit of GDP

Since the introduction of the Waste Minimisation Act 2008, the Ministry for the Environment has been collecting data on tonnages of waste disposed of at ‘levied facilities’. The intended outcome of the Act is to see a decrease in the amount of waste disposed per unit of GDP over time.

The Ministry has established a baseline for this impact measure following the collection of the first full years’ data. In the year to June 2010, 2,495,189 tonnes of waste were disposed of at facilities required to pay the waste levy. This equates to 13.2 tonnes of waste per $1 million of GDP. The baseline provides a starting point for future analysis.

6. Working with others

6.1 Progress in investigation, remedial planning or remediation of contaminated priority sites in conjunction with regional councils and/or land owners – increasing percentage managed or remediated

Since 2006/07, 28 contaminated sites have received funding from the Contaminated Sites Remediation Fund. Work on five of these is currently in progress, including the remediation of the Tui Mine site at Te Aroha. Further funding will be distributed in April 2011 for the 2011/12 year. The allocation of this funding will be informed by a priority list of contaminated sites that is being developed to ensure that sites of greatest risk are given priority for funding. The list will be completed by the end of 2010/11 and will be updated every six months based on information supplied by regional councils.

6.2 Level of community involvement in projects funded by the Community Environment Fund

This is a new measure. Base data for the Community Environment Fund will not be available until the end of the financial year, as the first funding round did not come into effect until after 30 June 2010. Community involvement will be measured by the number of community hours and in-kind contributions made to the project per dollar of government investment, based on reporting by funded projects.

6.3 Percentage of Community Environment Fund and Waste Minimisation Fund projects that report full achievement against objectives

This is a new measure. The Waste Minimisation Fund is still in its first year. Therefore base data will not be available until the next financial year.