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 Aim to integrate land use and fresh water management

Thursday October 4, 2012

A bundle of new policies are being proposed by Hawke’s Bay Regional Council with the aim of improving the combined management of water and land in the region. 

The provisions - known as Change 5 - would see changes made to the Regional Policy Statement. The Regional Policy Statement is the over-arching guidance on setting policies and rules for managing natural resources in Hawke’s Bay. 

“We need to implement provisions from both the government’s National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management and our own Hawke's Bay Land and Water Management Strategy, both of which were introduced last year,” says HBRC Policy team leader, Gavin Ide. 

“As a region, we need to take the approach that what happens on land can affect our rivers, streams and aquifers, so Change 5 aims at providing clear direction to everyone who has responsibility for managing the many uses of our land and water resources.” 

Change 5 proposal does not include new or changed rules but includes clearer policies on how conflicting values and uses of freshwater will be managed.

It outlines an approach to managing leaching of nitrogen and phosphorus from production land, and signals what future, catchment-based regional plan changes will need to consider in relation to land and water management issues. It also includes policies for land-based disposal of waste products. 

In August, an earlier draft of the changes was released for public comment and the Change 5 proposal is an evolution of this. 

“HBRC appreciates the public feedback we received on the earlier draft, which has certainly assisted the Council to make further improvements before this formal submission process started.” 

Submissions to HBRC are open until 5.00pm Monday 5 November 2012. 

Information is on HBRC’s website on the proposed policies, how to make a submission and the process for public participation. Alternatively phone Hawke’s Bay Regional Council on 0800 108 8383 or email info@hbrc.govt.nz for further information. ​