Points from the Analysis of MPA Submissions
- The Department of Conservation (DOC) and the Ministry of Fisheries
(MFish) jointly released the Marine Protected Areas (MPA)
Policy Statement and Implementation Plan for consultation
on the 8th November 2004. Submissions on the consultation document
closed on 28th February 2005.
- DOC and MFish then commissioned Enfocus Consulting Ltd to prepare
an independent summary of submissions.
- Full summary of submissions available
here » » (PDF 150Kb)
- This document is a brief analysis of their summary of submissions.
- DOC and MFish received a total of 68 submissions.
- Submissions were received from the following groups/sectors:
- Community groups – 4
- Conservation Authority and Boards – 7
- Environmental NGOs submitters – 7
- Government (Central) – 3 submissions
- Government (Local) – 8
- Government (Australian) – 1
- Individual – 9
- Industry (seafood, aquaculture, energy, oil and gas) –
- Recreational Fishing – 3
- Recreational Diving NGO – 1
- Science – 3
- Tangata whenua – 13
- Tangata whenua and industry submitters seek greater clarity
around what is being protected and why it is being protected.
In their view a robust MPA policy needs to include a clear assessment
of the threats or risks to biodiversity. Recreational fishing
groups support this view.
- Just over half (53%) of submitters say they see merit biodiversity
protection and express a desire for a more strategic approach
to protecting marine biodiversity.
- Nearly half of submitters (48%) from across all sector groups
say they have not been given sufficient opportunity to participate
in the development of the draft policy and implementation plan
- 40% of submitters in total reject all or part of the proposed
MPA implementation plan.
- More than a quarter of submitters (28%) specifically say MPA
policy should not go ahead in the absence of an agreed Oceans
Policy with more saying that they are frustrated that the Oceans
Policy has not been completed.
- Tangata whenua submitters are very concerned that the draft
policy does not address the implications of the Treaty on both
customary and commercial fishery rights or recognise their kaitaki
- There appears to be little confidence that the proposed process
will overcome localised tensions and result in an effective MPA
with Tangata Whenua
- TPK and all tangata whenua submitters strongly make the point
that the special relationship between the Crown and Maori requires/necessitates
on-going consultation with Maori on all aspects of MPA
policy development and implementation.
of Expert Groups
- Environmental NGO, industry, other industry groups, tangata
whenua and recreational fishing submitters strongly reject the
use of expert groups, which they see as exclusive decision-making
- Submitters from central and local government, industry, and
environmental NGOs say other agencies need to have a role in MPA
policy and implementation – beyond just DOC and the MFish.
- Regional councils wish to be seen as a partner in the
MPA process – not excluded from it.
- Separate implementation processes and especially separate consultation
processes are seen as inefficient and not helpful by a large number
of submitters (40%).
- Some environmental NGOs say they have no confidence that MFish
is an appropriate agency to be overseeing the development and
implementation of MPA policy.
- Many submitters suggest changes to various parts of the process;
however, two submitters suggest the entire process should be changed.
These are Te Ohu Kai Moana and SeaFIC.
- Tangata whenua, industry and recreational fishing submitters
believe that the draft policy needs to incorporate a risk-based
approach to biodiversity protection.
- A number of submitters from across all the sector groups are
concerned that land based impacts and other non-fishing threats
are not addressed.
- A number of submitters say that the consultation document is
overly complicated and difficult to interpret. Some even suggest
the document is deliberately confusing and misleading.
- Tangata whenua submitters say that the MPA policy cannot be
seen as a bicultural approach to biodiversity management and therefore
fails to meet the objectives of the NZBS.
on Biological Diversity
- A number of submitters are concerned that reference to the CBD
is not included in the draft MPA policy.
- Many submitters comment that the 10% is unclear, ambiguous and
- Submitters then split into three camps, those that:
- Support a protection target of 10% (generally individual and
community groups, and some conservation boards)
- Seek a target greater than 10% (environmental NGOs)
- Oppose the 10% target (tangata whenua, recreational fishers,
and industry submitters).
- All environmental NGOs express concern with the proposed definition
and scope of the policy. They say the current scope is too narrow
and they wish to see the definition and scope of the policy amended
to reflect "international understanding of the key features of
- Tangata whenua submitters strongly disagree with proposed definition
and policy saying it appears geared towards the establishment
of marine reserves and the exclusion of biodiversity
maintenance and protection within a sustainable utilisation model.
They call for a more balanced and holistic approach to managing
in the EEZ
- Environmental NGOs support the establishment of MPAs in the
- ECO and Forest and Bird Central Office believe that the scope
should further be expanded to the continental shelf.
- ECO also wants to see internal waters included.
- The Petroleum Association of New Zealand (PEANZ) provided Government
with a legal opinion that suggests establishing MPAs in the EEZ
may not be within New Zealand's domestic jurisdiction.
- A number of submitters are concerned that land based impacts
and other non-fishing threats such as those caused by shipping/transport
are not addressed.
- All industry groups want the MPA policy to include a clearer
explanation of what constitutes a legal property right and why
property rights need to be recognised.
- Tangata whenua submitters insist that commercial and customary
property rights should not be undermined by the MPA policy.
- ECO says that "public rights should take priority over private
- Recreational fishers ask for their rights (along with the rights
of the public) to be clearly defined and recognised in the policy.
- The New Zealand Marine Sciences Society (NZMSS) notes that the
policy does not address issues relating to displaced fishing effort
resulting from the establishment of MPAs; and, some seafood industry
submitters also raise this.
- ECO points out that Fisheries Act closures are not permanent
and should not therefore qualify as MPAs.
- Forest and Bird Central Office sees fishing as an "unreasonable
activity" in a MPA, "just as mining has been accepted as an unreasonable
- There appears to be little support for including cable protection
zones as MPAs.
- There is considerable uncertainty as to how stock strategies
will contribute to MPAs.
- Submitters from across almost all the sector groups want the
IUCN principles on marine protected areas to be taken into account
in developing a classification framework and associated management
units or regions.
- Many submitters note that the proposed timeline is unrealistic
- Tangata whenua and industry submitters in particular have little
faith in the operating plan and do not support it.