IntroductionView the Authority's strategic priorities. These priorities direct the Authority's work and focus, setting long-term goals and direction.
Statutory role for management planning and land status
Strategic priority (A&B) - Conservation Management Strategies (A) and National Park Management Plans (B)
Statutory (review and approval)
Review, approve, and champion improvements to the planning framework to ensure timeliness and quality of the planning process
- Follow NZCA approval processes and seek opportunities to expedite timelines and efficacy of the approval processes whilst holding or improving the quality of decisions.
- Approve CMS/NPMP at the third meeting after receipt.
- Continue to push for better, more dynamic, and responsive plans, and smarter planning processes.
- Ensure CMSs and NPMPs align with legislation.
- Ensure Department staff undertake their work in conformity with the Statutory Plans.
Strategic priority (C) - Land Status recategorisation (e.g.stewardship land)
Statutory (for national parks) and advisory (for all conservation lands).
Ensure the process and decision for land recategorisation is credible and robust; and that this is apparent to all stakeholders, including hapu and iwi at the inception of the process.
- Conduct a credible and transparent investigation and provide a report with clear recommendations for action. Support the relevant conservation board on specific land recategorisation matters.
- Provide advice on future tenure reviews under the Land Act 1948, Crown Pastoral Land Act 1998, and Overseas Investment Act 2005 / Office processes.
- Advise on a strategy/programme for prioritising stewardship land reclassifications.
Strategic priority (D) - Treaty of Waitangi and post-Treaty settlement conservation management
Statutory and Advisory
Meet requirements for NZCA as specified in settlement legislation; give on-going effect to the principles of the Treaty (per Section 4 and General Policies); provide advice in response to requests from settlement negotiation parties; evaluate and provide feedback on novel post-Treaty settlement approaches to achieving conservation outcomes.
- Ensure Conservation Act 1987 section 4 considerations are appropriately addressed in the updated General Policy for National Parks and that the procedures for this are updated with learnings from Treaty settlements, and other advice received.
- Demonstrate openness and good faith when giving advice (if consulted) on alternative models for conservation oversight and management.
- Maintain open and ongoing communication with iwi leaders.
- Implement NZCA’s section 4 template (including revisions), and review the Authority’s performance in relation to this annually.
- Ensure the Department develops an effective strategy for building relationships with iwi.
- Receive updates from the Department on their implementation of the Ngāi Tai decision.
- Develop our cultural competency as an Authority.
Influence and step change opportunities
Strategic priority (E) - Strategic advice to the Minister and DG in the context of conservation in today’s economy, the governance requirements, and strategic advice on public policy documents and legislation.
Be respected as an independent, and influential source of strategic advice for conservation.
- Give clear, considered and timely advice: on all matters, relevant to the NZCA effectively fulfilling its functions; and, where this can be influential in achieving better conservation outcomes.
- Maintain an active environmental scan to ensure the current and future operating context for conservation is well understood.
- Maintain active links with conservation boards and the community, actively seek improved quality of conservation board nominees.
- Follow up on submissions and advice to gauge their influence and identify where improvements in this role can be made.
- Provide regular monitoring of and advice to achieve the Department’s Stretch Goals and the Intermediate Outcomes objectives.
Strategic priority (F) - Opportunities for step change in conservation
Advisory and advocacy.
Better understand, protect, enhance and appreciate New Zealand’s native terrestrial and marine biodiversity.
- Provide strategic advice to the Director-General and the Minister for the effective management of introduced and pervasive pest species and weeds affecting native biodiversity.
- Support the discussion and evaluation and, where appropriate, field assessment (probably meant to be in-containment), of gene drive / gene editing and other novel technologies that could help New Zealand become predator free by 2050.
- Provide advice on securing and/or sustaining a social licence to responsibly use efficient pest and weed control technologies.
- Encourage the Department to undertake and sustain landscape-scale plant pest and weed control, such as wilding pines eradication.
- Continue to encourage the Department to undertake and sustain large-scale animal pest control and progress toward complete eradication of mammalian predators from large areas, such as Rakiura.
- Encourage the Department to actively manage other threats to native biodiversity such as kauri dieback (PTA) disease and myrtle rust, and to take a strong stance on biosecurity in general.
- Advocate for conservation on private land.
Strategic priority (G) - Visitor management on public conservation lands and waters
Advisory and advocacy.
Manage and mitigate the activities of domestic and international visitors on public conservation land.
- Advise the Minister and the Department on tourism and visitor management initiatives in the establishment of a post-Covid tourism industry.
- Advise the Department on the implementation of its Visitor Strategy and the DOC/MBIE Tourism Strategy.
- Ensure the concessions framework for tourism activities on public conservation land is fit for purpose.
- Review the resilience and capabilities of conservation land for providing for visitors at specific sites, especially pressure points.
- Work with other key stakeholders that have an interest in the tourism industry, e.g. TIA, MBIE, local government, and iwi and hapu.
Advocacy on nationally significant issues for conservation
Strategic priority (H) - Climate change adaption and mitigation
Advisory and advocacy.
s the implications of, and opportunities arising from, climate change and ensure conservation planning and expenditure priorities.
- Highlight the role of conservation in mitigating and adapting to climate change; and the means to reduce the risks of climate change to biodiversity and the Department’s infrastructure and management of capital assets.
- Show leadership with respect to landscape scale pest and weed control and its contribution as a mitigating factor – improving ecosystem health/ resilience.
- Monitor the implementation of DOC’s Climate Change Adaption Action Plan (CCAAP).
Strategic priority (I) - Rivers and freshwater ecosystems
Advisory and advocacy.
Be an advocate for ecosystem services that public conservation land provides to New Zealanders, with respect to values of our waterways and waterbodies.
- Maintain active advocacy for the comprehensive protection of a representative range of rivers.
- Use the NZCA River Report (2011) and other national freshwater management initiatives as a basis for advocacy for freshwater ecosystem management. Might need to add Mana o te Wai as a means to address cumulative impact issues in water use and management.
- Provide strategic advice on the management of whitebait and other endangered freshwater species such as the longfin eel.
- Ensure DOC’s environmental strategies align with the National Policy Statement for Freshwater and its successors.
Strategic priority (J) - Marine ecosystems and protected areas
Advisory and advocacy.
Contribute to the better protection of the marine environment and biodiversity.
- Actively engage with iwi, hapu and all stakeholders on Marine Protected Areas and how to protect a representative range of habitats and species.
- Maintain a watching brief on the growing/expanding marine aquaculture industry and monitor development and its impacts on marine ecosystems.
- Maintain oversight of threatened species marine by-catch and the effectiveness of monitoring of bycatch on fishing vessels, especially through the use of cameras on board fishing boats.
Monitoring and evaluation
Strategic priority (K) - Effectiveness and efficiency of the Department’s conservation management
Review and advisory.
- Fulfil statutory function (CA 6B(c)) to review and report on the Department’s administration of General Policies.
- Provide insightful evaluation and advice that contributes to improved conservation outcomes.
- Provide a ‘check and balance’ on the Department’s strategic planning
- Monitor the progress of the General Policy for National Parks Review work.
- Ensure General Policies are implemented in CMSs and NPMPs (via approval role - see A&B), and Milestone reporting is undertaken.
- Provide advice on the Department’s Statement of Intent.
- Provide advice to the Minister of Conservation and Director-General on budget and priority spending.
- Provide advice to the Department on how business, volunteer groups, and communities can engage with them more easily in order to increase conservation outcomes.
- Maintain an overview and assess effectiveness of the $180m biodiversity budget money.
Strategic priority (L) - NZCA's performance
Effect continuous improvement to achieve greater value and impact.
- Undertake annual self-review of performance and modus operandi.
- Regularly review and update the NZCA policies and principles.
- Work on a process to ensure better communications between conservation boards and the NZCA.
- Produce an Annual Report for year ending 30 June 2022.