Carbon dioxide (CO2) is widely used by businesses across New Zealand, from building and engineering through to food and drink production and hospitality.
New Zealand uses a mix of imports and domestically produced CO2 from the Todd Energy Kapuni liquid CO2 plant in Taranaki. Todd Energy says the Kapuni plant makes up just over half of New Zealand’s total CO2 supply.
It has been operating at reduced capacity since a potential safety issue was identified in December 2022. Todd Energy is ramping up production, and the plant is expected to return to full capacity operations later in 2023.
CO2 distributors are working with their customers to identify the best solution for their requirements.
While CO2 has historically been an inexpensive and readily available product, there are alternatives for most uses and we encourage businesses and suppliers to work together on possible solutions and to develop innovation.
You may be able to source your CO2 supply from overseas. Contact your gas supplier to find out more.
There are a range of alternative gases available on the market that can be substituted for specific uses. For example, nitrogen can be used for canning beverages, and compressed air can be partially substituted for CO2 use in hospitality businesses to dispense soft drinks or tap beer.
Contact your industry association as they have information and advice about gas alternatives for specific applications.
Affected businesses can apply for financial support from agencies listed below. Check if you are eligible before you apply.
If you are an affected business and are based outside Auckland, Wellington or Christchurch, you might be eligible for funding to invest in specific projects through the Regional Strategic Partnership Fund.
The fund aims to build more productive, resilient, inclusive, sustainable and Māori-enabling regional economies by delivering local approaches tailored to a region's particular needs and advantages.
Funding could be used for technologies that reduce your demand for CO2 or processes that enable switching to other gases.
Find more information and eligibility criteria on the Regional Strategic Partnership Fund section of the Kānoa – Regional Economic Development and Investment Unit website.
Work out if your project is eligible(external link) — Kānoa – Regional Economic Development and Investment Unit
The Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures fund supports problem-solving and innovation in New Zealand’s food and fibre sector by co-investing in initiatives. They fund a range of projects – from projects that cost less than $100,000 to multi-million-dollar, multi-year programmes.
Initiatives can be at an individual business or sector-wide level, and can be across the value-chain. The benefits of the project have to go beyond your own business, to the wider food and fibre sector.
If you have a proposal that might fit within the funding criteria, get in touch with the Ministry for Primary Industries to discuss your idea.
Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures(external link) — Ministry for Primary Industries
If you have been affected by the CO2 shortage, you may be able to get help from Work and Income.
There could be financial support to help retrain or redeploy staff.
Whether you’re thinking of downsizing, or reducing people’s hours, or if you’re in need of workers, talk to Work and Income early to find out what support you could be eligible for.
Employers(external link) — Work and Income
EECA (the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority) supports businesses with improving energy efficiency and emissions reduction through a series of Sector Decarbonisation Pathways.
You can access free tools and resources, developed by industry experts, to help you reduce your business’ energy-related emissions, collaborate, and reduce your sector’s impact on the climate.
To meet the criteria for EECA co-funding, projects need to help achieve national emissions budgets through industrial/commercial energy efficiency, fuel switching, energy supply (for example, renewables) or other energy-related decarbonisation initiatives that:
Businesses might be eligible for EECA co-funding if they are able to demonstrate that an initiative will reduce New Zealand’s national footprint from energy-related greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels.
For examples of funded projects and more information on who is eligible, check the EECA website.