July 03, 2014
Freshwater statement too diluted
Te Wai Maori Trust says an amended National Policy Statement on Freshwater Management won’t ensure inter-generational water sustainability.
Chair Ken Mair says it’s a step in the right direction, but the goal should be improving the quality of the nation’s freshwater, not just maintaining current environmental conditions.
He says the statement includes has a requirement for consultation with iwi and hapu, which falls short of a Treaty partnership and fails to promote a meaningful relationship at the community level.
The Maori interest in traditional food gathering areas and resources should be a compulsory value that is monitored by all councils, and using fish species like eels, koura and kakahi and their overall health and condition are a way of measuring that.
Mr Mair says the way the government-appointed board of inquiry handled the central Hawkes Bay Ruataniwha Dam proposal shows how regional councils must be forced to impose stricter standards on those wanting access to water.
Te Wai Maori Trust was established in 2004 through the Maori Fisheries Act to advance Maori interests in freshwater fisheries.
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