Auckland Council has established a Transport Emissions Reference Group to develop options to help achieve the bold emissions-reduction targets outlined in Te Tāruke-ā-Tāwhiri: Auckland’s Climate Plan.
The group, made up of Councillors, Independent Māori Statutory Board (IMSB) members, members of the Mana Whenua Kaitiaki Forum, and members of the Auckland Transport (AT) board, will provide strategic direction to officers from the council and AT who are jointly developing a Transport Emissions Reduction Plan that will outline concrete actions to dramatically reduce transport emissions by 2030.
Auckland, as New Zealand’s largest and fastest-growing city, must make a greater contribution to transport emissions reduction than other parts of the country to achieve New Zealand’s commitment to reaching net zero emissions by 2050.
Chair of the Environment and Climate Change Committee and member of the new Reference Group, Councillor Richard Hills says “We need to take bold action to achieve our emissions reduction goals, and there’ll be some tough decisions to be made along the way.
“When we released Te Tāruke-ā-Tāwhiri: Auckland’s Climate Plan in December, we set out what is required to halve Auckland’s emissions by 2030, reach net zero emissions by 2050 and prepare for the impacts of climate change. The work the Reference Group will do will help shape up the options that will go to decision-makers.
“We know that there is broad community support for taking action when it comes to climate change. We worked in partnership with mana whenua to create Te Tāruke ā Tāwhiri: Auckland’s Climate Plan, and feedback from Māori, Pasifika and young people broke all records.
“Our recent 10-year Budget also showed that Aucklanders care greatly about the environment and impacts of climate change, with well over 60 per cent of those who submitted agreeing with our climate investment package, and many asking us for more.
“With the support of Aucklanders behind us, we can and will achieve what we need to. I’m proud to work alongside my colleagues as part of the Reference Group, knowing that we will be helping to drive real and sustainable change for the benefit of future generations.”
Auckland Transport’s Board Chair, Adrienne Young-Cooper says “Decarbonising transport in Auckland will be a critical part of meeting Aotearoa’s global obligations to reduce the impact of climate change.
“The scale of the challenge means a wide range of options and methods will need to be tested. Aucklanders have said they are up for radical change - but consistent, incremental change by all of us will also make a big difference over time.”
In a joint submission to the Ministry of Transport’s discussion document Hīkina te Kohupara – Kia mauri ora ai te iwi: Transport Emissions: Pathways to Net Zero by 2050, the council and AT outlined their support for a decarbonisation pathway.
It focused on aggressive and early implementation of interventions that reduce private vehicle demand while increasing accessibility and travel choice, as well as strong electric vehicle uptake.