Funding opportunity to protect precious biodiversity opens today
Archived content: This media release was accurate on the date of publication.
IntroductionA fund to permanently protect areas containing some of Aotearoa New Zealand’s most threatened ecosystems opened for applications today.
Date: 13 December 2022
The Nature Heritage Fund (NHF) is open until 28 February for applications to protect indigenous ecosystems permanently, particularly those nationally uncommon ecosystems that are most at risk of extinction. The NHF is a contestable Ministerial fund that helps private landowners, local government, community groups, and others permanently protect high-value indigenous ecosystems.
Since 1990, the NHF has legally protected over 349,000 hectares of indigenous ecosystem which could otherwise have been cleared or damaged.
Nature Heritage Fund Committee chair Sue Rickman says it is important to invest funding into protecting ecosystems.
“This funding round is aligned with achieving the outcomes of the Aotearoa New Zealand Biodiversity Strategy/Te Mana o Te Taiao,” says Sue.
“It is important that a full range of indigenous ecosystems are protected and secured for future generations. That’s why $6.9 million is available for this round and I encourage applications targeting ecosystems that are most at risk of extinction.”
The fund’s scope includes all indigenous terrestrial ecosystems considered important ecologically at a local or national level. There are 17 naturally uncommon ecosystems which are most in danger, including coastal turfs, inland saline areas, ephemeral wetlands, and a range of other ecosystems. Naturally uncommon ecosystems contribute disproportionately to national biodiversity, and we are developing our understanding of these ecosystems.
The Nature Heritage Fund is open for applications now and closes on 28 February 2023.
The Nature Heritage Fund (NHF) is a contestable Ministerial fund established in 1990 to protect indigenous ecosystems.
An independent committee appointed by the Minister of Conservation under section 56 of the Conservation Act 1987 makes recommendations for funding. The annual appropriation for the NHF is $1.8 million. Note that any unallocated funds are carried forward to the next financial year.
Since 1990, the NHF has protected over 349,000 hectares of indigenous ecosystem through legal and physical protection, much of which could otherwise have been logged, cleared, or damaged.
The NHF provides funding to support the protection of indigenous ecosystems, through helping to permanently protect representative, sustainable, landscape and amenity values of indigenous ecosystems. It does this by direct purchase by the Crown, or, while leaving the land in private ownership, through covenanting, leasing, accords, and management agreements.
The NHF’s scope includes all indigenous terrestrial ecosystems that in their local or national context are considered important ecologically. It includes indigenous forests, wetlands, tussock lands and coastal ecosystems on private land.
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