Te Atakura – First to Zero mahere kaupare āhuarangi hurihuri
Te Atakura - First to Zero climate action plan

Explore the key milestones and targets of Te Atakura - First to zero.

Te Atakura - First to Zero timeline

  • April 2019 - Over 1200 Wellingtonians were involved in the Te Atakura engagement process (5MB PDF) to help shape the First to Zero blueprint. 
  • June 2019 - Wellington City Councillors declare a climate and ecological emergency and adopt the Download our Te Atakura – First to Zero blueprint (2MB PDF). The blueprint sets Wellington's ambition to become a net zero carbon capital by 2050.
  • August 2020 - Councillors adopt the Download our Te Atakura – Implementation Plan (650KB PDF) to achieve our target.
  • July 2021 - Funding is granted through the Long Term Plan 2021-31, to deliver on key action areas over the next 10 years.
  • September 2021 - Our 2021 Update (466KB PDF) of the plan includes a target of a 57% reduction in emissions between 2020 and 2030.
  • December 2022 - Our 2022 Update (1.8MB PDF) text version (7.7MB DOCX) shows good progress on the plan and highlights the need for urgent collective climate action. 
  • December 2023 - Our 2023 Update (3.4MB PDF) text version (25.2MB DOCX) reports on progress in delivering the Te Atakura – First to Zero Implementation Plan adopted by the Council in 2020. While progress is positive, collective urgent climate action is still needed to reach our 2030 and 2050 goals.

Our implementation plan is a 'living document' that will be updated and reported on yearly as the city continues towards our goal of becoming a zero carbon capital by 2050.

Our targets

We must reduce our global emissions quickly, with the most significant reductions by 2030.

Emissions reduction targets 2030 2050
Wellington City 57% 100%

Our previous targets as a city were set against our 2001 emissions baseline. Since we need to make the biggest reductions this decade, we have reset our targets to achieve a 57% reduction of our 2020 emissions by 2030.

A graph showing Wellington City emissions targets. Showing they are at 1,200,000 tCO2 in the mid-2000's. Then showing a 57% reduction by 2030 and zero in 2050.

What is net zero?

To be net zero carbon means we reduce our emissions to as close to zero as we can, and then use forestry, known as 'carbon sinks', to offset the remaining emissions. This would make our emissions 'net zero', stopping our contribution to global warming. Find out more about how we track our city emissions.

A graph showing Wellington City emissions in 2020 are ~1,050,000 tonnes of CO2e emitted with 70,000 tonnes offset. At net zero our emissions will have reduced our emissions significantly and the remaining will be offset by forestry.

Increasing forestry alone will not be enough to meet our targets. We must work with the government and local communities to reduce emissions as much as possible across the city, while also looking for ways to offset and capture carbon.

Find out more about our Te Atakura action areas.