WELLINGTON, Nov. 22 (Xinhua) -- The New Zealand government confirmed on Tuesday the Clean Car Standard will be phased in from Dec. 1, which will significantly reduce the CO2 emissions of light vehicles.
"Emissions from our light vehicle fleet are the single largest source of transport emissions in New Zealand, thanks in part to us having some of the most fuel-inefficient and emission-intensive vehicles in the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development)," said Transport Minister Michael Wood.
"This costs Kiwis at the pump and it's damaging our health and the environment," Wood said, adding that the supply of fuel-efficient vehicles needs to be increased, and that New Zealanders need more choices in the variety of low- and zero-emission vehicles.
From Jan. 1, 2023 imported vehicles incur a credit or charge based on CO2 emissions, he said, adding the system encourages importers to bring in a sufficient number of low- and zero-emission vehicles that attract credits to offset the charges applied to higher-emitting vehicles.
The standard was made following discussions with vehicle importers, Wood said, adding legislation to enable the phased implementation will be passed this week.
The Clean Car Standard requires vehicle importers to progressively reduce the CO2 emissions of light vehicles, both new and used, they bring into New Zealand. This is achieved by setting CO2 targets which get more ambitious year by year, said the minister.
The importers are encouraged to bring in vehicles with lower emissions, which burn less fuel and will "stop New Zealand being the dumping ground for the dirtiest vehicles in the world," Wood said.