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Robust debate welcomed by farmers

Robust debate welcomed by farmers

Farmers welcome robust community debate on water issues says Federated Farmers spokesman for water Hugh Ritchie.

Mr Ritchie’s comments come in light of the release of a National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management by the Minister for the Environment today.

“Farmers generally support the goals of the National Policy Statement including an agreed standard for water bodies by 2035, Mr Ritchie said.

“Communities are in the best place to debate which water bodies are notable and are a priority for improvement. Farmers also welcome sensible measures that promote best practice and that will enable social, economic, and cultural wellbeing.

“Water storage is extremely important to New Zealand and should be a major tool to manage the country’s water resource. Storage has positive effects on both water quantity and water quality.

Federated Farmers encourages discussion around and the implementation of an NPS to be based upon robust scientific assessment, not on a subjective feel for flows or quality in any particular water body. A scientific approach is also required when measuring and reporting so repeatable results can be achieved.

Federated Farmers believes regional councils working within the Resource Management Act process are in the best position to deal with the effects of land use on water quality and quantity. That onus put onto district councils, as is suggested in the National Policy Statement, would create a duplication and additional cost. What we want them to do is to.

Federated Farmers looks forward to engaging positively and constructively with the board of inquiry.


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