Northland Regional Council's Proposed Regional Plan was publicly notified in September 2017. The local community has been consulted during the development of this plan and had the opportunity to make submissions. The next step will be to notify the opportunity for people to make further submissions, which the Council estimates will be early March 2018.
Specific rules for the five Waiora water catchments are being developed as part of this process.
These catchments are: Doubtless Bay; Waitangi River; Mangere River; Whangarei Harbour; and Poutō Dune Lakes.
Fonterra supports the Regional Council’s proposed rule changes for effluent management and focuses on the efficient use of water for dairy farms.
The Regional Council and the Northern Kaipara sub tribe Te Uri o Hau signed a Memorandum of Understanding in 2012
This saw the Regional Council committing to work with the iwi to better support their objectives, including the ongoing management of the Kaipara Harbour.
Many of the region’s lowland rivers, estuaries and harbours have a build-up of sediment, affecting water clarity. The majority of lakes and some rivers across the region register high nutrient levels.
Fonterra Farmers’ progress towards some of the Sustainable Dairying Targets
of significant waterways are fenced and have dairy excluded
The Sustainable Dairying: Water Accord defines regular crossing points as “any permanently flowing rivers, streams, drains and springs, more than a metre wide and 30cm deep.”
of regular stock crossing points have bridges or culverts
The Sustainable Dairying: Water Accord defines regular crossing points as “those used more than once a month to access the milking shed.”
of farms have collected nutrient management data
The Living Water Kaipara Harbour/ Hikurangi catchment programme
is focused on
Securing and protecting remnant wetlands and riparian forest. These include the two main remnant wetland areas – Wairua River and Otakairangi Government Purpose Wildlife Management Reserves – and on-farm remnants.
Building connectivity and enhancing ecosystem health and resilience within and beyond the flood plain. This will include Otakairangi peat bog restoration (recreating a missing ecosystem type and species) as well as riparian management and wetland construction on-farm.
Contributing new knowledge through:
Identifying options to improve priority ecosystem services that benefit farmers (flood, sediment and nutrient control).
Demonstrating the value created for agricultural systems of securing and expanding wetland remnants.
Catchment call out #1
Fonterra supports the focus by Northland Regional Council on priority catchments for community-driven planning and action.
Catchment call out #2
Dairy farming is an important land use in most of the priority catchments and dairy farmers are representing the industry with support from DairyNZ and Fonterra.
Fonterra is providing information on waterways and tuna to Ngā Kaitiaki o Ngā Wai Māori, as part of river restoration project for the headwaters of Te Ruapekapeka, Tapuhi, and Puhipuhi River to the Kaipara Harbour.