We are a Crown entity established under the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Act. Our Commissioners were announced by the Minister for Climate Change, Hon James Shaw, on 17 December 2019.


We provide independent, evidence-based advice to Government to help Aotearoa New Zealand transition to a low-emissions and climate-resilient economy. 

We also monitor and review the Government’s progress towards our emissions reduction and adaptation goals.

Response to Budget 2020

We have provided feedback to the Government on the initiatives announced through Budget 2020. We recognise the extraordinary conditions that drove this year’s Budget. We acknowledge this is a time of huge uncertainty, but it is also one of opportunity. What we plan for and build now is what we have in the future. 

Our feedback has been sent to Climate Change Minister James Shaw in the form of a letter that can be found here.

Assistance for economic recovery following Covid-19

The Climate Change Commission has offered our assistance to the Government as it plans for economic recovery following the Covid-19 pandemic.

This advice is in the form of six principles that can be used to guide a stimulus that creates jobs, ensures economic growth and keeps New Zealand on track to achieving its climate goals.

The advice has been sent to Climate Change Minister James Shaw in the form of a letter that can be found here.

Review of New Zealand’s Nationally Determined Contribution and biogenic methane

Minister for Climate Change James Shaw has asked the Climate Change Commission to review New Zealand’s first Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) under the Paris Agreement. 

The purpose of the review is to ensure the NDC is compatible with the goal, unanimously agreed by Parliament last year, of limiting global warming to 1.5˚C above pre-industrial levels.

An NDC is a statement of a country’s best efforts to address climate change over a set period. New Zealand has committed to an average 30 percent reduction on 2005 emission levels over 2021-2030. 

Alongside this, the Minister has asked for advice on the potential reduction in biogenic methane, which might eventually be required by New Zealand as part of the global efforts under the Paris Agreement.

We will include the review in our public and stakeholder engagement programme and provide our advice alongside our recommendations for the first three emissions budgets.

A copy of Minister Shaw’s request to the Commission can be found here. The Terms of Reference for the request are here.

ETR submission

On February 10 2020, we provided a written submission to the Environment Committee on the Climate Change Response (Emissions Trading Reform) Amendment Bill 2019. The submission can be found here.

ETS submission

On February 28 2020, we provided a written submission to the Ministry for the Environment’s consultation on proposed settings for the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme.

At a high level, we have fed back that it’s encouraging to see the Emissions Trading Scheme being strengthened, but that improvements are needed to provide more transparency and better align the unit supply and price control settings with the legislative objectives and framework.

We hope our feedback on this will make the proposals more robust, highlight further work that’s needed, and enhance transparency and understanding of the NZ ETS.

The submission can be found here.

Call for evidence

From 19 September – 15 November 2019, the Interim Climate Change Committee opened a Call for evidence on options available to reduce greenhouse gas emissions over the period 2022 to 2035. The Committee received 77 responses from a wide range of organisations and individuals and the responsibility of considering this data transferred to the Commission in December 2019.

The information received in the Call for evidence has been added to the evidence base the Commission will draw upon in forming the emissions budgets. It was made clear through the process that we would publish material we received for public release in early 2020.

The following are those responses and their supporting evidence. Please note some larger submissions are still being processed and uploaded.

Alltech NZ

Andy Barratt

Apricus NZ

Big Street Bikers


Bioenergy Association




City Rail Link

Concrete New Zealand

Deer Pro

Deirdre Kent

Dr Alexandra Macmillan

Dr Paul Callister

Dr Paul Winton

Dr Rocky Renquist

Dr Roger Blakeley


Elemental Group

Energia Potior


  • Response
  • Evidence – NZ Government Presentation



  • Response
  • Evidence – Emissions profile infographic

Forest and Bird

Global Ecofuel Solutions

Golden Bay Cement

Great South

Hiringa Energy

Horticulture NZ

Lucy Hicks

Manawatu District Council



National Energy Research

NZ Centre for Sustainable Cities

NZ Green Building Council

NZ Wind Energy Association

NZ Pork

Oliver Bruce


Pioneer Energy

Plant for good from Fonterra


Robert McLachlan

Robert Tromop

Roger Blakeley


SRD Consulting


Sustainable Dunedin City

Sustainability Council

Tāne’s Tree Trust


Todd Corporation




Venture Taranaki

Waikato Tainui

Zest Biotech


Dr Rod Carr - Chairperson

Dr Carr has extensive experience in both public and private sector governance and leadership. He served as Chair and non-executive director of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand and served as Deputy Governor and for a time Acting Governor of the Bank. Dr Carr was the founding Chair of the National Infrastructure Advisory Board and for over a decade was a non-executive director of the Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce. He led the University of Canterbury as Vice Chancellor for ten years before retiring in February 2019 having completed the recovery from the 2010 and 2011 earthquakes.

Rod holds a PhD in Insurance and Risk Management, an MA in Applied Economics and Managerial Science, an MBA in Money and Finance and honours degrees in law and economics. His real-world experience, academic training and breadth of experience provide an excellent background for the critical task in taking a leadership position in leading climate change mitigation and adaptation.

Professor Nicola Shadbolt

Professor Shadbolt is a farmer, forester, director and academic who brings an important mix of real-world business experience and research to the Commission. As the recently appointed Chairperson of Plant and Food Research and former Director of Fonterra Cooperative Group and Transit New Zealand, Professor Shadbolt also has a strong understanding of governance leadership. She is equipped with a wide range of experience, from farm to fork, including manufacturing ingredients and fast-moving consumer goods. Her additional knowledge in quick-service restaurants and the high-end food service provides Nicola a proven record in implementing sustainability in businesses and a keen appreciation of how environmental management fits alongside social and economic imperatives.

Ms Lisa Tumahai - Deputy Chairperson

Ms Tumahai's prior experience as Deputy Chairperson of the ICCC will help bring continuity to the work of the Commission.

Ms Tumahai is a leader within Ngāi Tahu and has a unique insight about how to mobilise an entity towards strategies and targets.

Ms Tumahai also has established relationships with iwi and Māori and will help to ensure the broader Commission has a greater understanding of te ao Māori perspectives.

Ms Catherine Leining

Ms Leining is one of New Zealand’s leading experts on climate change mitigation policy with a specialisation in emissions trading. As a Policy Fellow at Motu Economic and Public Policy Research since 2013, she co-led Motu’s research and engagement programme on “Shaping New Zealand’s Low-Emission Future.” She has held policy positions at the Ministry for the Environment, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Wellington City Council and New Zealand Transport Agency. In government roles, she helped design the NZ ETS and served on the New Zealand delegation to the UNFCCC negotiations.

Before moving to New Zealand, she held diverse policy positions in the US. She provides independent consulting through Silver Lining Global Solutions and was trained as a Climate Leader under The Climate Reality Project launched by Al Gore. She holds a BS in biology (with distinction) and French from Duke University. As a Commissioner, Ms Leining will help ensure the organisation considers the broadest range of policy tools and mechanisms available to reduce emissions.

Dr Harry Clark

Dr Clark is an internationally recognised science leader in greenhouse gases research. He is well regarded in the primary sector both from a science and agri-business perspective.

As a member of the ICCC, Dr Clark has been heavily involved in the delivery and oversight of reports and will bring a strong sense of continuity to the broader climate community and secretariat during the transition from the ICCC to the Commission.

Professor James Renwick

Professor James Renwick is a leading climate scientist with a strong national and international reputation, having four decades of experience in weather and climate research. His appointment as a Lead Author and Coordinating Lead Author on three Assessment Reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) demonstrates his expertise in climate and atmospheric science. He has also been involved in the governance of the World Climate Research Programme for the past eight years.

Professor Renwick is a well-known science communicator, engaging with a wide variety of stakeholders and public groups, and appearing regularly in the media on climate-related topics. He was awarded the 2018 Prime Minister’s Prize for Science Communication.

Dr Judy Lawrence

Dr Lawrence is a thought leader on climate change adaptation with a strong national and international reputation. Judy’s expertise is reflected in having been appointed as a Coordinating Lead Author with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). She has developed extensive networks across central and local government and served as an elected member of a regional council. Judy is a multi-disciplinary team player set between climate change science and national mitigation and adaptation policy.

Dr Lawrence’s experience will make a valuable contribution to the Commission ensuring the organisation has both expertise in, and a focus on, climate change adaptation.

Jo Hendy - Chief Executive

Jo Hendy led the Secretariat team of the Interim Climate Change Committee and oversaw the Committee’s inquiry into renewable electricity. Jo comes to the Commission with over a decade of leadership experience in climate change-related issues. In her former role as Director of Research and Analysis for the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, she oversaw independent environmental investigations into issues including sea-level rise and agricultural greenhouse gas emissions. She also led the team investigating the establishment of a new climate commission.

Jo also has a technical background in economic modelling and spent seven years working for Motu Economic and Public Policy Research. She studied mathematics, physics and economics and holds a BSc (Hons) in Mathematics, and a Graduate Diploma in Applied Science (Meteorology).


Climate Change Commission Secretariat

Level 21, 1 Willis Street

Wellington 6011

PO Box 24448

Wellington 6142


Please direct media queries to media@climatecommission.govt.nz 

Please direct recruitment queries to recruitment@climatecommission.govt.nz