Land Owners & Regional Council United On Approach
Land Owners and Regional Council United On Approach to Setting Nitrogen Limits
Land owners and Bay of Plenty Regional Council have agreed on an approach for allocating nitrogen loss for land use in the Lake Rotorua catchment.
Council’s Strategy, Policy and Planning Committee this week approved an approach recommended by Regional Council staff and the Lake Rotorua Catchment Stakeholder Advisory Group, which will achieve required nitrogen reductions in the lake through an integrated programme of nitrogen discharge allowances (NDAs), incentives and gorse conversion.
Lake Rotorua Stakeholder Advisory Group chairman Dr Tanira Kingi, said the agreed framework shared the risk, responsibility and cost of achieving the sustainable nitrogen limit set for Lake Rotorua between farmers and the Regional Council.
The approach was the result of a collaborative process to deliver improved water quality and maintain a viable rural sector in the Lake Rotorua catchment, he said.
“We strongly believe this approach will receive wider support during implementation. It provides for a level of business security which will support investment in farms to reduce nitrogen losses and is likely to attract significant industry investment in the development of Farm Nutrient Plans.”
Regional Council General Manager Natural Resource Operations, Warwick Murray, acknowledged that rules for nitrogen limits would have an economic impact on rural land owners but said the council would continue working with them to ensure the best possible outcome for Lake Rotorua and the local rural economy.
“The Lake Rotorua Stakeholder Advisory Group has provided critical input into how we approach the rules and incentives development for the Lake Rotorua catchment. We are now all in agreement on a way forward – this is a significant achievement for rural landowners, the council and the community,” Mr Murray said.