Kia ora Conservation Minister Poto Williams,
I support greater protection of New Zealand conservation stewardship land. The one third of all conservation land currently classed as stewardship land has low legal protection, despite being irreplaceable carbon stores, rare habitats, and homes for endangered native species.
I want the more than 600,000 hectares of West Coast conservation stewardship land reclassified into appropriate categories of higher protection.
In particular, in the midst of a climate and biodiversity crisis, I support:
- Keeping public conservation land: Very little conservation land should be ‘disposed’ of, because most conservation stewardship land is important habitat for native species. Land is also needed for public access, native reforestation, and as climate change mitigation and ecological buffer zones.
- Funding new conservation parks: New conservation parks should come with additional Government funding for better biodiversity work and more pest control.
- More areas of special protection: Areas of international importance, ancient rainforests, and rare ecosystems deserve recognition. Many more of these special lands should be protected as ecological areas, scenic reserves, wildlife management areas, or scientific reserves.
- Extra additions to national parks: I support the proposed additions to national parks and would like to see more areas given the highest level of protection.
Getting this right is crucial for all of New Zealand – these are our forests, wetlands, rivers, and mountains. In a warming world, we will rely on these lands even more than we do now, and we need to protect them now, for the future.
This is an individual submission. I do not wish to speak to my submission.
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