Date: 01 December 2016
New Zealand’s Predator Free 2050 programme is at the forefront of a global effort against invasive predators, Conservation Minister Maggie Barry says.
“Today sees the launch of the Honolulu Challenge, an initiative by 33 international conservation organisations calling for urgent action to reduce the impact of invasive species on global biodiversity,” Ms Barry says.
New Zealand was one of the first members of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) to commit to the Challenge at the World Congress in Hawaii in September.
“Predator Free 2050 is the largest and most ambitious invasive species eradication project ever attempted. We are already seen as world leaders in this field and our early and strong support for the IUCN’s Honolulu Challenge further enhances our international reputation.”
The Government has set a goal of completely eradicating invasive rats, stoats and possums from New Zealand by 2050 to make the country safe again for native species threatened with extinction through predation.
“Invasive species not only cause destruction to our natural taonga but also threaten our major industries – tourism and agriculture – as well as our social and cultural links to New Zealand’s environment.”
Ms Barry will travel to Mexico on Thursday to represent New Zealand at the International Convention on Biological Diversity meeting in Cancun, where the impact of invasive species will also be addressed.
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