From the TVNZ News (excerpts):

Farmers heated over gas tax

A farmers’ revolt could be looming over a radical plan to tax gas emission of their animals.

The farmers are threatening to block major roads and mount a campaign of civil disobedience after a meeting in Palmerston North.

About 150 farmers from the southern North Island attended the second of four meetings being organised by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry to talk to farmers about the proposed levy.

Farmers at the Palmerston North meeting were adamant that they would not pay the levy. They claim it is unfair that only farmers have to pay the tax while the whole country benefits from a reduction in greenhouse gases.

Bryan Hocken from Taranaki Federated Farmers said their intention was to inform the government that it has no right to impose such a levy and “we’re not going to pay it.”

The farmers plan to refuse to fill in statistics forms accurately on the number of livestock they have and they also intend to further pressure politicians to stop the proposed levy.

Ross Bolton from New Plymouth said farmers feel angry enough about the issue to take action and they are talking of marching on Parliament and driving tractors onto Wellington motorways.

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