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Abel Tasman foreshore to become scenic reserve

14 July 2005

Abel Tasman foreshore to become scenic reserve

Conservation Minister Chris Carter today announced he had given the go-ahead for the Abel Tasman National Park’s foreshore to become a scenic reserve.

The foreshore reserve, which should be in place this summer, is to be jointly managed by the Department of Conservation and the Tasman District Council.

“Giving reserve status to the Abel Tasman foreshore will enable better management of commercial activity and visitor numbers along this outstandingly beautiful stretch of coastline," Mr Carter said.

“It is estimated around 160,000 people a year visit Abel Tasman coastal areas and increasingly people are entering the park across the foreshore, by kayak and water taxi. With growth in visitor numbers there is a risk the natural environment will be degraded and that overcrowding could spoil people’s enjoyment of the area.

“At present, there is no legal mechanism for controlling commercial activity on the foreshore, or for controlling the numbers of people entering the park across the foreshore by means of commercial operations. Reserve status will allow measures to be introduced to better manage this."

Mr Carter said reserve status would initially apply just to foreshore areas that had been surveyed, around two-thirds of the approximately 90 kilometres in total. Remaining areas would be brought into the scenic reserve once surveying of those areas had been completed.

“With the creation of the foreshore reserve, the next step will be to prepare a management plan for it. The public will have input into this plan and it will guide how the foreshore is managed," Mr Carter said.

The proposal to make the Abel Tasman foreshore a scenic reserve came out of a 2001 report facilitated by Nelson Mayor Paul Matheson. Mr Matheson had been appointed to consider foreshore management options in conjunction with an advisory board made up of the local council, DOC, commercial operators, residents groups, the Nelson/Marlborough Conservation Board and iwi.

ENDS

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