Methyl bromide: Government slams industry

Wednesday 12 Dec 2018

The Government has lobbed a bomb at the forestry industry, slamming a lack of progress in finding ways to reduce emissions of the ozone-depleting pesticide methyl bromide.

In a letter to industry groups, Environment Minister David Parker says he and his colleagues are "very concerned" that it appears a deadline to have all methyl bromide emissions recaptured by October, 2020 will be missed.

While there had been collaborative efforts through the industry group Stakeholders in Methyl Bromide Reduction (Stimbr), he said, "it appears that to date most companies have not been willing to invest sufficiently in effective recapture technology or infrastructure".

He called for a meeting of stakeholders early in the new year to discuss solutions.

The industry has hit back, saying in a response letter that the deadline was "self imposed" by government and could lead to "significant economic disruption".

Forest owners have also fired a broadside at the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA), accusing it of delays in ruling on an application to register a chemical it hopes will be a replacement for methyl bromide.

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