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Feedback on the Canterbury Regional Council (Environment Canterbury) Long Term Plan Te Pae Tawhiti 2021/31

Forest & Bird has 47 branches throughout Aotearoa New Zealand. Our North Canterbury, Ashburton and South Canterbury Branches have a long history of conservation in the Canterbury region. We have contributed significantly—and continue to contribute significantly—to conservation in the Canterbury region through on-the-ground conservation work within our communities.

Forest & Bird's feedback on the Long-Term Plan Te Pae Tawhiti 2021/31 centres around our strategic vision for Canterbury:

  • Climate Centred: Canterbury is resilient to the impacts of climate change. Activities or developments in the region must actively mitigate their contribution to climate change. People understand the threat and urgency of climate change and are supported in climate change practices.
  • Economy that Supports Nature: Canterbury’s local economy and nature are interconnected. Unhealthy nature equals an unhealthy economy.
  • Vibrant Landscapes: Canterbury’s terrestrial native flora and fauna are protected and enhanced in urban and rural areas. Canterbury’s landscapes are free from pests. Development can occur without clearing and destroying landscapes and their respective natural ecosystems.
  • Oceans Alive: Canterbury people recognise the health of the marine environment is a direct result of on-land activities. The regions harbours return to their original, healthy states. Fishing and aquaculture activities follow ecosystem-based management principles. Thirty percent of Canterbury’s marine environment is protected through a network of no-take marine protected areas.
  • Energised Water, Rivers and Wetlands: Canterbury’s rivers and streams are clean, healthy and teeming with life. Wetlands are protected and enhanced.

Dealing with the climate and ecological crisis and Canterbury’s woeful nitrate problem requires bold leadership and urgent action from Environment Canterbury during the next decade. Forest & Bird strongly urges the council to heed this urgency and do much more. There is considerable community support for this type of leadership.

Ocean acidification and loss of native marine species presents an alarming picture of future, we look forward to participating in the process to review the Coastal Plan for the Canterbury region and more enduring protection for the coastal and marine environment and the native species that live there.

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