The Government of New Zealand has developed this Biodiversity Strategy to fulfill the commitments made under the Convention of Biological Diversity. The purpose of this nation-wide sectoral document is to establish a strategic framework for action to conserve, use and manage the indigenous biodiversity. However, it also addresses the genetic resources of the introduced species, as stated by the statement that explains the Vision.The Strategy establishes four main goals, as follows (i) enhance community and individual understanding about biodiversity and enable them to equitably share responsibility for, and benefits from, conserving and using it in a sustainable way; (ii) protect the Maori tribes’ interests in indigenous biodiversity and build and strengthen partnerships between government agencies and tribes in the shared management of indigenous biodiversity, as laid down in the Treaty of Waitangi; (iii) maintain and restore a full range of remaining natural habitats and ecosystems to a healthy functioning state, also maintaining and restoring viable populations of all indigenous species and conserving their genetic diversity; and (iv) maintain the genetic resources of introduced species, important for economic, biological and cultural reasons, by conserving their genetic diversity. A comprehensive framework for action directed towards the Strategy goals is outlined in ten topic areas, including biodiversity on land; freshwater biodiversity; coastal and marine biodiversity; conservation and use of genetic resources; bio-security and biodiversity; governance; Maori and biodiversity; community participation and awareness; information, knowledge and capacity; and New Zealand’s international responsibilities.To make agriculture, forestry and fisheries more productive and sustainable, main proposed actions are directed to (i) encourage and support sector-led initiatives to effectively incorporate biodiversity considerations in their strategic planning and operational practices, with a focus on the agriculture, forestry, horticulture, fisheries, aquaculture and tourism sectors; (ii) ensure fisheries management planning assesses risks to threatened indigenous species from their harvest and from introduced species, and take appropriate action to manage these risks, and where necessary, clarify fisheries management responsibilities; (iii) ensure implementation of the purpose and principles of the Fisheries Act 1996, including programs to sustain or restore harvested species and associated and dependent species to ecologically sustainable levels, and integrate marine biodiversity protection priorities into programs for sustainable fisheries use, such as fisheries plans, using an ecosystem approach; (iv) improve the environmental impact assessment (EIA) of fishing and other marine and coastal resource use, and integrate these EIA into fisheries decision-making processes (including sustainability measures and fisheries plans) and other marine management processes; and (v) end unsustainable logging of indigenous forest on Crown-managed land as soon as is practicable.In order to enable more inclusive and efficient agricultural and food systems, the Strategy aims at increasing community participation in conserving biodiversity through (i) determining ways to provide for involvement of the wider community and ensuring central government and community initiatives are appropriately linked and coordinated; (ii) calling community groups determining ways to provide for involvement of the wider community; (iii) developing and implementing strategies and plans, including national and regional pest management strategies, to manage plant and animal pests posing significant threats to indigenous biodiversity; (iv) expanding and modifying existing national funding mechanisms to meet current demand by landowners and communities where a priority, to protect habitats and ecosystems important for indigenous biodiversity, and to maintain the condition of protected areas through fencing and pest management; (v) encouraging community understanding of, and involvement in, programs and activities to protect, maintain and restore indigenous biodiversity through showcase projects and volunteer progras, and improve access to information, technology, expertise and resources; (vi) developing and strengthening information systems to increase access by local authorities, tribal and other sector groups, communities and landowners to indigenous biodiversity survey and ecosystem data and information; (vii) developing and using national and regional “biodiversity awards” to reward notable efforts or achievements by landowners, businesses and community groups to conserve and use indigenous biodiversity; (viii) supporting, and where necessary developing, joint national and regional and local incentive mechanisms for protecting scarce and under-represented freshwater bodies and their surrounding areas on private land, and provide support to landowners to maintain the biodiversity values of these areas; and (ix) providing advice and support to land managers and communities (both rural and urban) who wish to protect freshwater waterways, wetlands and habitats in their area to encourage the protection of areas that are a priority for indigenous freshwater biodiversity.As for the Governance, the document outlines a mechanism for coordinating implementation of the Strategy at a central government level since successful implementation will require a coordinated effort across central and local government, working in partnership with local tribes, and with the community, the private sector and landowners.
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