SESSION THEME | Values - landscapes, ocean and water


Wednesday 1 April, 

Open ocean aquaculture has been identified by the government and the aquaculture industry as a significant growth opportunity, with mussel and salmon farming likely to lead the charge. Technology is rapidly evolving to enable these farms to withstand the exposed nature of New Zealand's open ocean environment, which means it is likely that future development will occur both within the territorial sea and beyond into the exclusive economic zone. It also means that future marine farms will likely look quite different to what we are currently used to. In addition to structures in the water, these marine farms will need to be supported by an array of land-based activities, including hatcheries, wharves and processing plants.

While there are a few open ocean mussel farms already around New Zealand, the open ocean is largely a blank slate, both in terms of farms in the water and policies to underpin and guide future planning, allocation and consenting decisions. There is an opportunity to design a world-leading framework to manage open ocean aquaculture into the future.

What does it look like to design such a framework? What role should the various management agencies in both central and local government play? What does partnership with Maori look like in this space? How should the aquaculture industry be involved? What about other stakeholders and users of the open ocean environment?

This paper draws on examples and learnings from both overseas jurisdictions and work Fisheries New Zealand is currently leading to reflect on these and other questions. It will also look at what role planners have in leading this change.

Presenter:  Michael Nielsen

Senior Aquaculture Analyst, Fisheries New Zealand

Michael works in the Aquaculture team at Fisheries New Zealand and is based in Whangarei. His role includes providing expert planning input into the various projects the Aquaculture team works on, including the Proposed National Environmental Standard for Marine Aquaculture. 


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