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

 

Mackenzie Basin Agency Alignment review report released

Environment Canterbury has today released a report commissioned by the five agencies with statutory responsibility for land and water management in the iconic Mackenzie Basin.

The Mackenzie Basin – Opportunities for Agency Alignment review identifies the numerous opportunities and challenges facing agencies and the community in the future management of the Mackenzie.

Environment Canterbury Chief Executive Bill Bayfield said the regional council, the Department of Conservation, Land Information New Zealand and the Mackenzie and Waitaki District Councils were seeking ways to better work together for the benefit of the Basin, its unique environment and the people who live there.

“There has been substantial change in the Basin,” Mr Bayfield said. “Not everyone is happy with it. Changes in natural character, landscape, biodiversity and biosecurity, and water quality are all issues, as are the ability to develop businesses and the rules and consent framework.”

With these challenges in mind, the five agencies commissioned a project to identify opportunities for better alignment between them.

Working together to improve environmental outcomes

“The purpose is improved agency effectiveness and strategic focus, better environmental outcomes and improved capacity to meet the needs and interests of the Basin’s communities, stakeholders and rūnanga,” Mr Bayfield said.

“At meetings today and tomorrow we are sharing the contents of the report, seeking views on prioritising its recommendations and developing an understanding about which recommendations people and organisations would like to be involved in. We look forward to hearing the community’s views so we can improve the way agencies work together in the Mackenzie Basin.”

Land Information New Zealand Chief Executive Andrew Crisp said the review was an important document that identified areas of common ground for agencies and the community to work more closely.

“We recognise that pastoral agriculture and the iconic, wide open landscapes of the Mackenzie are an important part of our national identity and heritage, in the same way as our unique flora and fauna are important too.

“This is why LINZ has already been working more closely with DOC to better understand the ecological and landscape values when making decisions about Crown lands. The report provides an opportunity for us to take a broader, more coordinated approach to decision-making and management, working more collaboratively with the councils and community.”

Department of Conservation Director-General Lou Sanson said the Mackenzie Basin stood out nationally for its rare and globally significant dryland ecosystems, and that it was committed to working with LINZ and others to conserve its values.

Keeping the environment in balance

“The vision for the Basin has always included a balance of agriculture, tourism and conservation. In recent years we’ve seen significant advancements in tourism and agriculture while conservation protection has struggled to keep up. This report allows us to take a streamlined approach in our work to address this.”

Waitaki District Council Planning Manager Hamish Barrell said that within the Waitaki District, the communities of Omarama, Otematata and Ohau had always regarded their area’s conservation values as special.

“With the expansion of tourism and other development pressures including land conversion, Waitaki District Council has committed to re-thinking the balance between farming, tourism, new housing proposals and conservation through its District Plan Review,” he said.

“We share the protection of this special area with Mackenzie District and understand that long-term success on private land necessitates not only protection measures within the District Plan but also comprehensive pest control measures and incentives to facilitate the voluntary protection of indigenous biodiversity.

“We see this process as the continuation of co-operation with other stakeholders in the area including the Mackenzie Trust, Government agencies, Environment Canterbury, the local community and iwi that began with the Mackenzie Agreement in 2013.

Engaging communities

“While we await feedback on the report’s contents, we acknowledge its release is timely to help communities start engaging with the Waitaki District Plan. The District Plan review will not only affect Omarama, Otematata and Ohau communities, but also areas where Council must also give expression to the regional policies of the Otago Regional Council,” Mr Barrell said.

Mackenzie District Council Chief Executive Suzette van Aswegen said the report presented an exciting opportunity for the five agencies moving forward collectively. “It will enable more holistic and integrated management of the economic, cultural and natural resources dear to the Basin’s community, stakeholders and rūnanga,” she said.

“The Mackenzie District Council and other agencies understand the differing needs and interests of the Basin’s communities, rūnanga and the stakeholders from all corners of New Zealand due to its nationally significant values. We are committed to working together to achieve common goals and outcomes in consultation with the community, stakeholders and rūnanga,” Ms van Aswegen said.

Download the full report here

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Perils Of Using PPPs To Meet Auckland’s Roading Needs

More than once, the coalition government has ruled out using public private partnerships (PPPs) to fund the country’s infrastructure needs in health and education – apparently private profiteering in those areas is recognised as being undesirable. Not the same story though with transport, and the reasons for that differential treatment are mystifying. Earlier today, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced that one of two new roads that the government would be co-financing would be a PPP – namely, the Penlink project that will link the northern motorway to the Whangaparaoa Peninsula.

More>>

 
 

HiveMind: Fair Enough? How Should New Zealanders Be Taxed?

Have Your Say - Scoop and PEP invite you to share your issues, ideas and perspectives on the NZ tax system with other New Zealanders using Scoop’s HiveMind tool. This Tax HiveMind is intended to complement and feed into the review being run by the Government-appointed Tax Working Group (TWG), which is looking at the fairness, balance and structure of the tax system with a 10-year time horizon. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Thompson + Clark & Russia’s World Cup

Daily, the coalition government keeps running into examples of the toxic legacy left behind by National – and just as regularly, even the simple fixes are proving stubbornly difficult to enact. Take the case of the security firm Thompson + Clark ... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The GCSB’s Security Hang-Up With Russia

So our GCSB has chimed in, alongside its British, Australian and US allies, with warnings about a “fresh wave” of Russian cyber attacks, although the warning has been curiously framed. More>>

ALSO:

PM's Europe Trip: CHOGM & Bilateral Meetings

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is in Europe for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in London and meetings with counterparts in Paris and Berlin. More>>

ALSO:


Addressing Climate Change: No New Offshore Exploration Permits

The Coalition Government is taking an important step to address climate change and create a clean, green and sustainable future for New Zealand, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. More>>

ALSO:

Road Safety Summit: Actions To Improve Identified

The Local Government Road Safety Summit held last week identified actions that will lead to lasting changes to road safety in New Zealand, says Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages