Development within environmental limits
Irrigation across the Makenzie Basin. Image - John Hunt
National Outcome: Increase the ability of New Zealand industries and organisations to develop within environmental limits and meet market and community requirements.
Environmental integrity (‘clean, green’) is critical to the New Zealand brand. To maintain this integrity and achieve economic development goals, New Zealand must work within complex environmental limits. This often entails balancing the diverse needs of multiple stakeholders, including government and local government, the private sector, Māori and the community.
Our research supports agencies tasked with developing and implementing effective environmental policy, regulation and practices for the sustainable management of land, water and ecosystem services. Our work also supports operational agencies to maintain New Zealand’s biosecurity. Effective decision-making processes must be evidencebased and engage sector and community stakeholders. Our scenario modelling is a highly effective way to demonstrate the costs and benefits of various options and support good decision-making.
Management of biosecurity issues (weeds, pests, diseases) is a significant cost to government agencies and the primary sector. Bovine TB is a market-access and economic issue for the New Zealand primary sector; TBfree New Zealand and OSPRI’s goal is to eradicate the disease by 2026. This goal is achievable and is underpinned by our research managing wildlife sources of infection and reinfection, principally in possums. Our work in this area has significant co-benefits for biodiversity outcomes.