Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Positive step for oceans, but sea change needed

New environmental regulations a positive step for oceans, but sea change in thinking needed - WWF

Statement For immediate release - 27 June 2008

Environment Minister Trevor Mallard announced today that the Ministry for the Environment is drafting legislation to manage the environmental effects of currently unregulated activities in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

Commenting on the announcement, WWF-New Zealand Marine Programme Manager, Rebecca Bird, said:

“This is a positive step forward for protecting New Zealand’s oceans. It seeks to resolve the current unacceptable situation where the environmental impacts of activities such as petroleum exploration and prospecting in our oceans are unregulated. We have been campaigning strongly for the government to bring in environmental regulations for these activities, so today’s announcement is encouraging. We also welcome the Ministry’s decision to allocate extra resources, in the form of a commissioner and new unit for application processing, monitoring and enforcement. Providing adequate resources for the regulations will be essential to their effectiveness.

“However, we are disappointed that the government is taking a limited approach, rather than an ecosystem-based management approach.

“Our vision is for marine biodiversity to be protected, living and non-living marine resources utilised sustainably, and the integrity of the system not degraded or compromised – this is best achieved through regulating the exploitation of ocean resources through an ecosystem-based approach. Instead, the government has adopted a ‘patching the gap’ approach. This flies in the face of current thinking about marine governance and management.

"We will continue to campaign for the government to introduce EEZ legislation that delivers ecosystem-based management through marine spatial planning. It’s a balancing act – we need to have a system where we balance protecting the environment and biodiversity, with the economic value of resource exploitation. A marine spatial planning approach is vital to delivering this.

“The government needs to focus immediate effort on delivering ecosystem-based management throughout the territorial seas and New Zealand’s EEZ. We’re calling on the Ministry for the Environment to take the lead on meeting these obligations to protect our oceans. People rely on the ecological systems of the oceans being healthy. It’s important for our own future that we ensure the oceans are protected today.”



Marine spatial planning

Delivering ecosystem-based management involves developing an agreed marine spatial plan, which includes designating and protecting an ecologically representative network of marine protected areas, ecosystem-based fisheries management, and regulatory standards/tools for specific sectoral activities permitted to take place in preferred development zones. Environmental assessment tools such as strategic environmental assessment and environmental impact assessments can facilitate decision-making within the development of an agreed spatial plan.

WSSD is the World Summit on Sustainable Development. At the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD), a significant milestone was reached by over 100 countries, for a Plan of Implementation that agreed on several specific ecosystem-related targets including: achievement of “substantial” reductions in land-based sources of pollution by 2006; introduction of the ecosystems approach to marine resource assessment and management by 2010; designation of a network of marine protected areas by 2012; and the maintenance and restoration of fish stocks to maximum sustainable yield levels by 2015.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Back Again: Government Approves TPP11 Mandate

The Government has approved a negotiating mandate for Trans-Pacific Partnership 11 (TPP11), which will ensure New Zealand businesses remain competitive in overseas markets.

Trade Minister Todd McClay says New Zealand will be pushing for the minimal number of changes possible to the original TPP agreement, something that the remaining TPP11 countries have agreed on. More>>




Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice. More>>


Rail: Greens Back Tauranga – Hamilton – Auckland Service

The Green Party today announced that it will trial a passenger rail service between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga starting in 2019, when it is in government. More>>


Housing: Voluntary Rental Warrant Of Fitness For Wellington

Wellington City Council is partnering with the University of Otago, Wellington, to launch a voluntary Rental Warrant of Fitness for minimum housing standards in Wellington, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>


Treaty: Agreement In Principle Signed With Moriori

“The Crown acknowledges Moriori was left virtually landless from 1870, hindering its cultural, social and economic development. The Crown also acknowledges its contribution to the myths that the people of Moriori were racially inferior and became extinct." More>>


Susan Devoy: Call For Inquiry Into State Abuse Reaches UN

Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy is in Geneva and has asked a United Nations committee to urge the New Zealand government to initiate an inquiry into the physical and sexual abuse of children and disabled people held in state institutions. More>>


(Not National): Cross-Party Agreement On Pike River Re-Entry

The commitment was signed this afternoon by the leaders of Labour, United Future, The Maori Party, and the Green Party and, together with the earlier commitment by New Zealand First, means that there is now a Parliamentary majority behind the families’ fight for truth and justice. More>>






Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election