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Wanaka meetings join forces to discuss local farming issues

November 1 2011

Wanaka meetings join forces to discuss local farming issues

A clash of meeting times has been resolved by Otago Regional Council (ORC) and Wanaka Wastebusters rescheduling and combining their Lake Wanaka Centre meetings scheduled for 7pm this Thursday (November 3).

The Wanaka Wastebusters-sponsored seminar - Maintaining farm productivity and profits in an uncertain climate - has been rescheduled to start at 6.30pm. It will be followed at 7.45pm by an ORC presentation and discussion on proposed new rural water quality rules.

Wanaka Wastebusters general manager Sue Coutts said her group had arranged a talk by scientist Jim Salinger and business commentator Rod Oram on the implications of climate change for farming. This would no doubt interest many people in the district, who would also want to discuss rules the ORC is developing to control the quality of water leaving farms.

ORC associate director communications Peter Taylor said it made sense to combine the two meetings since they included related material. ORC was pleased to be able to collaborate with Wanaka Wastebusters to ensure the community could attend both events.

"ORC's proposed rules are an innovative development and will play a major part in ensuring productive and efficient agriculture and that water quality was ensured in Otago,'' Mr Taylor said.

The ORC proposals include setting standards on the level of water contaminant that can leave a farm. Conditioned permitted activity rules have also been designed to encourage farmers to develop methods specific to their individual farms that will ensure their farm water is within the standards.

Ms Coutts said the combined meetings represented a good opportunity for people to hear about the link between climate change, waterways, and agriculture. They would also double as a forum for discussion of future planning relating to these issues, which were inextricably linked to Otago's prosperity.

ENDS

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