Take our climate change test: How much do you know?

Chris Knox
Chris Knox

Data Editor and Head of Data Journalism, NZ Herald

Climate change is daunting, partly because of the huge numbers and insider jargon to confuse the average person.

So, as part of the Covering Climate Now series, this week the New Zealand Herald has created a daily quiz for you to test your knowledge and sort the facts from the fiction.

The questions are focused on the kinds of greenhouse gas emissions which some nations have agreed to reduce under international agreements to limit climate change.

Under these agreements and the upcoming Zero Carbon Bill, New Zealand has three emission reduction targets: 5 per cent below 1990 emissions by 2020, 30 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030 and 50 per cent below 1990 levels by 2050.

The gases we need to reduce come from four sectors: which do you think are the most important in New Zealand?

Emissions are also tracked for specific industries and activities. See if you can rank these four.

How do New Zealand's greenhouse gas emissions compare globally?

Let's take a closer look at these figures. How do you think New Zealand's emissions for energy and transport compare globally?

How do New Zealand's agricultural emissions compare globally?

All the emissions numbers reported here use the global warming potential method of estimating the warming contribution of different gases - based on the average warming for each gas over 100 years. This method is the metric New Zealand has agreed to use for the 2030 emissions reduction target.

In the next article we will look at the difference between agricultural and energy sector emissions.


Data is from the Ministry for the Environment's Emissions Tracker and the OECD's reporting. All emissions were for 2017 except for China's which were from 2012.

Design by Kat Greenbrook of Rogue Penguin

This article was supported by the Aotearoa New Zealand Science Journalism Fund.