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Environment - Policy Summary

Eugenie Sage MP
Eugenie Sage MP
eugenie [dot] sage [at] parliament [dot] govt [dot] nz (Email)
Read the whole Environment Policy.

We love Aotearoa and we want to protect it. Our kids have a birth right to swim in clean rivers, fish in the sea, and walk in pristine forests.

Our Environment Policy protects New Zealand's natural heritage from exploitation of finite resources for short term profit, such as industrial dairying & open-cast mining.

Real prosperity means clean rivers and air, rich biodiversity, and protected marine areas.

Vision:

A society that lives within the limits of the natural world, where people understand the impacts of their way of life on the environment, and are involved in decision making about sustainable development. Sustainability will take precedence over growth in GDP, and will be measured and reported.

Policy highlights:

Rivers and freshwater

  • Amend the National Policy Statement on Freshwater Management and develop national environmental standards to limit pollution from nutrients, sediment and other contaminants.
  • Require as a minimum that all water bodies be maintained to contact recreational standard, in other words ensure that all rivers and lakes are safe for swimming.
  • Require resource consents for intensification of land use (because intensification of land use is the main cause of water quality degradation in New Zealand).

Air quality

  • Review the standards for contaminants in the National Environmental Standards for Air Quality to ensure they reflect the latest international research.
  • Set comprehensive emission standards for all ages and classes of vehicle.
  • Require transport policy and cost benefit evaluations of new transport infrastructure to consider the effects on air quality from vehicle emissions.

Resource Management Act

  • Uphold the core principles of environmental protection and public participation.
  • Ensure better enforcement of consent conditions by councils.
  • Support local decision making with National Policy Statements and Environmental Standards.

Environmental Reporting and information

  • Introduce regular nationwide state of the environment reporting by the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment.
  • Complete the development of sustainability indicators and make these widely available to the public, and use these to measure progress towards sustainability.

The policy also includes sections on Sustainable Living, Te Tiriti, Sustainable Government Procurement, Waste, Toxic Substances and Mining.

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