A new group pushing for a different approach to tackling on-farm emissions - especially when it comes to methane - has been launched.
The Methane Science Accord is co-chaired by North Otago farmer Jane Smith, and South Waikato sheep, beef and dairy grazing farmer, Helen Mandeno.
Mandeno said the group was a team of farmers and scientists “speaking up” against the Government’s proposed methane tax.
“All of us have done our own research that has led us to the same conclusions,” Mandeno told The Country’s Jamie Mackay.
In her opinion: “New Zealand’s policy surrounding our agricultural methane emissions is deeply flawed and not supported by sound science.”
Mandeno said she had a Bachelor of Science degree from Auckland University and had also completed three Massey University short courses in advanced soil conservation, sustainable nutrient management, and farm environment planning.
Mackay asked her if these were enough qualifications to go up against someone such as Dr Rod Carr, the chair of the Climate Change Commission.
“Well, these qualifications give me a sound scientific background that I’m able to read the scientific papers and not be scared by the phrases that they use.
“I’ve just got a really good basis of knowledge.”
Smith said the Methane Science Accord was formed as a reaction to farmers being, in her opinion, “pushed around” by the Government, political parties, green groups and the Climate Change Commission.
“All we seek is that methane emissions policy be based on current, unrefuted science.”
The group’s press release said it was “heartily sick and tired of political games being played with our livelihood, even by our own industry organisations”.
Mandeno said while these industry organisations were spouting stronger rhetoric - “actions speak louder than words”.
In a press release, Smith said the group was independent of, but “fully supported by”, Groundswell, 50 Shades of Green, F.A.R.M. and Rural Advocacy Network, plus “over 100 farming leaders”.
Mackay asked Mandeno whether that made the Methane Science Accord a protest group.
“We’re educated farmers that have had a guts full.”