Transport plans around New Zealand will need to reflect the direction in New Zealand’s first Emissions Reduction Plan. Councils will get more funding for projects which reduce transport emissions and less funding for other projects.


Reducing car travel in urban areas


The Emissions Reduction Plan aims to reduce total kilometres travelled (VKT) by the light fleet (mostly cars) by 20 per cent by 2035, particularly in our largest cities.

Central government will work with local government, Māori and community representatives to develop reduction programmes in the following areas:

  • Auckland, Hamilton, Tauranga, Wellington, and Christchurch in 2023
  • Whangārei, New Plymouth, Napier Hastings, Palmerston North, Nelson Tasman, Queenstown, and Dunedin in 2024.


Central government commitments and direction will affect local plans


  • Transport-emissions impact assessments need to be included in transport plans.
  • Proposals for new transport projects will need to demonstrate how they will reduce emissions. It will be much harder to gain central government investment in transport projects which don’t contribute to reducing emissions, including new roads.
  • Central government will support improvements to infrastructure for walking and cycling, for initiatives to increase the uptake of e-bikes.
  • A national plan will be developed to significantly increase the safety and attractiveness of cycling and micro-mobility (e.g. electric scooters).
  • Central government will provide incentives to local government to quickly deliver bike/scooter networks, dedicated bus lanes, and walking improvements by reallocating street space (including during street renewals).

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