Wednesday, July 6, 2022

New water accord developed

A new Sustainable Dairying: Water Accord has been developed to update and succeed the Dairying and Clean Streams Accord which ended in 2012 and the final snapshot has been released today by the accord partners.

The Clean Streams Accord partners are the Ministry for Primary Industries, Fonterra, Local Government New Zealand and the Ministry for the Environment. 

The final snapshot shows there has been an increase in compliance with effluent management rules along with steady progress on excluding livestock from waterways. 

It is close to the 90% target. 

MPI resource policy director Mike Jebson said the Accord played a key role in driving an improvement in farmers’ environmental performance. 

“One of the five targets was achieved and there has been progress towards achieving all the others,” he said. 

“But a number of challenges remain. For example, the report shows the management of effluent discharge remains a significant area for dairy farmers to work on.” 

With the end of the Clean Streams Accord, the new Sustainable Dairying: Water Accord will be taken to farmers over the coming months before being finalised and formally launched in time for the 2013/14 dairy season start on August 1. 

“This is a new, broader and more comprehensive commitment than the previous Clean Streams Accord as it will cover all dairy farmers, not just Fonterra suppliers,” DairyNZ chairman John Luxton said. 

“It also includes commitments to targeted riparian planting plans, comprehensive standards for new dairy farms and measures to improve the efficiency of water and nutrient use on farms. 

“All dairy companies and DairyNZ will be accountable for its commitments and farmer uptake will be supported through supply contracts and support programmes.” 

Reported Dairying and Clean Streams Accord improvements

  • Farms with Stock excluded from waterways from 67% to 87%
  • Farms with race crossing points with bridges or culverts from 92% to 99%
  • Farms with dairy effluent treated and discharged in compliance with regional councils’ resource consents from 67% to 73%
  • Farms with nutrient budgets from 17% to 99%
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