Claims bungling will cost forest owners millions
Canterbury Farming, Canterbury/West Coast by Ken Caddick 01 Jan 2023
Some foresters could be millions of dollars out of pocket due to a poorly communicated change in application deadlines.
That's according to National's Forestry spokesperson Ian McKelvie.
"In October, the Ministry of Primary Industries sent an email to foresters announcing that they were moving the effective deadline to register forests for the Emissions Trading Scheme from the last day of the year to 25 October 2022. simply due to long processing times in their office," McKelvie said.
"This left forest owners just three working days to submit their applications. After that date has passed, their applications will not be processed until 2023. This change will prevent some forest owners from claiming five years' worth of backdated credits to 2018."
McKelvie said some forest owners stand to lose millions of dollars as a result of this poorly communicated change.
"An owner of a large native forest in the South Island claims he will lose $6million to $8 million. This is more than just incompetence, it is theft.
'Newly revealed information shows processing times to register a forest in the ETS have more than doubled in the last five years, while staff numbers have also doubled in the same period."
He said foresters should not be punished because of mismanagement and a lack of leadership from the Government.
It is crucial that landowners who planted their native and exotic trees in good faith are treated fairly. It is not good enough that foresters had almost no notice to submit their applications and stand to lose millions, simply because MPI aren't prepared.
"To maintain confidence in the ETS. the Government must honour the commitment to issue backdated credits for the current return period.
"The Government should direct MPI to allow forests with backdated credits that apply in 2022 to be registered in the same year." McKelvie said.
It is not good enough that foresters had almost no notice to submit their applications and stand to lose millions.
Ian McKelvie National's Forestry spokesperson
Do you like this page?