OPINION: The latest Federated Farmers survey of farmer confidence paints a worrying picture.
An exposure draft of the NSP-IB was released yesterday.
Chris Allen, the Federated Farmers board member who was part of the cross-sector Biodiversity Collaborative Group that made recommendations to the Government says implementation of the new rules will need to be accompanied by a comprehensive financial support package.
“Federated Farmers endorses the goal of improving New Zealand’s biodiversity management, including maintenance, and where needed, protection of biodiversity values,” Allen says.
"Much of New Zealand’s biodiversity remains because landowners have done the right thing, and second-generation planning processes across the country are either already embedded or starting to become so. The NPS-IB needs to build on and support this impetus, not derail it."
Allen says that on an initial reading of the NPS-IB exposure draft, Federated Farmers is concerned about where it departs from the BCG’s recommendations but will need time to fully study it.
"Given the importance of this National Policy Statement and the two years since the last draft was put out, six weeks’ consultation will be tight to do it justice,” he says.
He adds that success of the NPS-IB relies on the government’s commitment to the partnership, support, and other key measures recommended in the BCG’s report.
"Without these non-regulatory support measures, and significant resources for partnerships, catchment group processes and landscape-scale initiatives, the success of an NPS-IB process is either jeopardised or significantly weakened.”
He says the $20 million committed by the Government over the next five years won’t scratch the surface of what is needed.
“Federated Farmers is calling for ten times that and believes this deserves the full attention of the Prime Minister, the Minister of Finance and the Minister for the Environment.”