Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 


New Aotea Conservation Park approved

New Aotea Conservation Park approved

12,109 hectares of Great Barrier Island in Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf is to be set aside in a new Aotea Conservation Park, Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith announced today at a community function in Claris with Auckland Central MP Nikki Kaye.

“This new park will bring significant conservation, recreational and tourism benefits to Auckland. My ambition is that with improved facilities and stronger protection, we will see more Aucklanders choosing to visit and getting to know the natural wonders of their own city on Great Barrier Island,” Dr Smith says.

“The treasure of this new island park is its spectacular coastal and bluffed landscapes, rich forests and unique species. The park includes New Zealand’s largest area of possum-free forest including impressive stands of kauri, pōhutukawa, kānuka and Great Barrier tree daisy. It has healthy bird populations of kaka, pāteke (brown teal), pūweto (spotless crake) and mātātā (fernbird). It has the most diverse range of native freshwater species of any offshore island in New Zealand, and populations of very rare frogs, native paua slugs and niho taniwha (chevron skink).

“This new park is well-justified with it containing Auckland’s richest area for native plant and birdlife. It will be the Department of Conservation’s largest park in Auckland and will be similar in size to the Auckland Council’s Hunua and Waitakere Ranges parks. “

The new Aotea Conservation Park includes 18 different blocks of general stewardship land. The proposal follows the report of the Parliament Commissioner for the Environment in August 2013 which recommended a review of the legal status of higher value stewardship land. The new park was proposed by local MP Ms Kaye in September. The Minister initiated a formal investigation in October and a discussion paper was issued in December.

“This new park was very strongly supported with 2754 submissions. Many non-Island submitters wanted it to be further upgraded to national park status but this was not supported by most Islanders. I am advised that as much of the forest was previously logged, it is unlikely to meet the stricter criteria of the National Parks Act at this time. I have decided to confirm conservation park status. One change to the boundaries is an exclusion from the park of a small area of the Whangaparapara Cemetery that is to be transferred to Auckland Council. The Geographic Board has confirmed the proposed name of the new park as the Aotea Conservation Park,” Dr Smith says.

“There will be some delay in implementing this new park with the extensive storm damage to Great Barrier Island these last two months. The immediate priority is the restoration of tracks, bridges, repair of huts, signage, campgrounds and the Department’s office, for which the Government has committed $2.5 million. This timely decision on the new park enables this repair work to be done to the higher standard expected of a conservation park.

“The final steps are for the new Aotea Conservation Park to be surveyed and gazetted in coming months. It is my intention to also appoint a park advisory committee with iwi and Island representation. The plan is to have this work and the repairs completed to enable a formal opening over summer,” Dr Smith concluded.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The Inquiry Into One Case Of Dirty Politics

Suddenly, we’re awash in inquiries and reviews. (It feels almost as if the Greens won the last election.) Caught out by the damning inquiry by SIS Inspector-General Cheryl Gwyn, the government’s response yesterday was utterly in character – it released two other major reports at the same time to try and distract public attention...

Inquiries are supposed to re-assure the public. What these inquiry outcomes share in common is a government culture of zero responsibility. More>>

IGIS: Statement On Early Report Release

As the Inspector-General stated at the release of the report yesterday morning, she is examining what steps to take over the early disclosure of information from the report... Ms Gwyn said that she was aware of Mr Goff's subsequent statements that he had disclosed some information concerning findings in the report. She will be seeking further information from Mr Goff and others. More>>

ALSO:

IGIS ON SIS:

 
 

Parliament Today:

Temporary Release Crackdown Continues: Corrections Review Of Phillip Smith Case

“The review by Corrections’ Chief Custodial Officer reveals that the plan for Smith’s series of temporary releases was overly ambitious and misinformed. He’s a highly manipulative and deceptive person who although technically eligible, should not have been considered for temporary release." More>>

ALSO:

White Ribbon Day: Govt Resumes Sexual Violence Trial Proceedings Work

Justice Minister Amy Adams has asked the Law Commission to resume work on proposals for better supporting victims of sexual violence through the criminal process. The Law Commission will revisit its previous work on alternative pre-trial and trial processes to identify options for improving complainants’ experience in court. More>>

ALSO:

"New Faces, Wise Heads": Andrew Little Announces New Labour Line Up

Labour Leader Andrew Little today announced a bold new caucus line up which brings forward new talent and draws on the party’s depth of experience. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Rick Ellis As Te Papa’s New CEO

The recent appointment of former TVNZ boss Rick Ellis to head Te Papa has copped a fair bit of criticism. Much of it has been inspired by the suspicion that Ellis has been hired to pursue the same purely commercial goals as he did at TVNZ, while similarly neglecting the serious cultural side of his mandate. More>>

Passport Cancellation, Surveillance: Draft 'Foreign Fighters Legislation' Released

The final draft of the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill contains proposals previously announced by Mr Key in a major national security speech earlier this month. More>>

ALSO:

Related

Joint Statement: Establishment Of NZ-China Strategic Partnership

At the invitation of Governor-General Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae and Prime Minister The Rt Hon John Key of New Zealand, President Xi Jinping of the People’s Republic of China made a state visit to New Zealand from 19 to 21 November 2014... More>>

ALSO:

Savings Targets: Health Procurement Plan Changes Direction

Next steps in implementing DHB shared services programme Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says the Government has agreed to explore a proposal put forward by DHBs to move implementation of the shared services programme to a DHB-owned vehicle. More>>

ALSO:

More on Health Policy:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news