The new National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management 2020 (Aug 2020) (NPS) sets out the objectives and polices for freshwater management under the Resource Management Act 1991.
- It provides direction and is implemented through regional and district plans.
- There are different speeds of implementation for different councils. The new NPS sets tougher national bottom lines.
- Te Mana o te Wai refers to the fundamental importance of water and recognises that protecting the health of freshwater protects the health and well-being of the wider environment.
- The National Environmental Standards for Freshwater (NES) means that Government set minimum requirements nationwide:
- N fertiliser cap: after 1 July 2021 <190 kg synthetic N/ha avg across whole pastoral land (=land grazed by livestock). Area (GPS based data) and N purchase needs to be reported by 31st Jul each year. NES prevails over regional plan unless they are tighter.
- Winter grazing rules. If you cannot comply with the following, then consent is required: after 1st May 21: annual forage crops grazed 1 May – 30 Sep needs to be <50ha or <10% for >500ha. Should be less than max annual grazing ha 1Jul2014-30Jun2019. Mean slope of paddock <10 degrees. Pugging: <20 cm deep 10 m around gateway or fixed water trough; >5 cm deep at <50% of paddock. Grazing >5m from waterbody or drain. Grazed area must be replanted before 1st Oct (1st Nov Otago / Southland). Stock exclusion regulations apply to all properties with all farmed livestock, no consent given: 3m setback from lakes, rivers and wetlands, slope <10 degrees is low slope and under reveiw. A permanent fence is required. Existing fences do not need to be moved. A river is > 1 m wide.
- Other new regulations are set for: Land use intensification increasing irrigated pasture area for dairy farming, increasing dairy support land, provisions relating to feedlots and stockholding areas and works in or near wetlands.
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