Friday, 17 April 2020 09:34

Dairy farmers committed to water quality

Written by  Sudesh Kissun
Environment Minister David Parker said the report will help inform the work already underway. Environment Minister David Parker said the report will help inform the work already underway.

Dairy farmers are committed to protecting New Zealand’s environment and taking action on-farm to support that, says DairyNZ.

DairyNZ strategy and investment leader for environment, Dr David Burger says the dairy sector is on the journey to improve and protect water quality outcomes.

His comments came at the release of Our Freshwater 2020 report, highlighting New Zealand’s environmental challenges and where we can all play our part.

“Our farmers have been working toward this for over a decade. We are continuing to do more every year,” says Burger. 

“The Freshwater 2020 report does draw some key themes together for urban, farming and forestry, and shows us that all land use has an impact on our freshwater.” 

However, Burger said the report’s approach compares current water quality with native forest waterway condition, and DairyNZ believes it is therefore somewhat misleading.

“We know that all development has an impact on water quality but it is unrealistic to compare to native forest state. An estimated 95% of total river length in pastoral catchments exceeded one or more guideline values simply because they are being compared to very high native forest standard,” said Burger.

Interestingly, more than 50% of native waterways also failed to meet the same criteria. This sets the benchmark very high for catchments with modified land use.

Environment Minister David Parker said the report will help inform the work already underway, to protect and restore waterways and the life in them. 

“New Zealanders want to swim, fish, gather mahinga kai and enjoy freshwater as our parents and grandparents did. We also need clean water to drink and irrigation to support a sustainable economy,” he said. 

“But our water is suffering as a result of human activities, including the effects of climate change.” 

More like this

Two-way battle

There's a two-way fight for one DairyNZ board seat as incumbent Jacqueline Rowarth takes on Waiuku farmer Stu Muir.

Strategy for Delta

The dairy industry, along with all primary sectors, are going to have to be very proactive and innovative over the next two to three years to deal with the uncertainties created by Covid-19.

Farmers at ease with borders

We're very understanding on what's being put in place. That's the feedback that DairyNZ has been getting from farmers just prior to a government requirement that all essential workers, including dairy farmers, crossing the border into Auckland region must get a weekly Covid test.

Good question!

A mate of the Hound's thinks it was more than a bit dodgy when DairyNZ chair Jim van der Poel recently announced the director elections for the industry good body.

National

Machinery & Products

Spreading muck with ease

Palmerston North headquartered Strautmann Hopkins Ltd imports the extensive range of Strautmann Muck Spreaders for farmers and contractors, built by…

Looking to upgrade?

Technology is constantly evolving, meaning products change quickly so you need to ensure improvements and upgrades are yielding value from…

» The RNG Weather Report

» Latest Print Issues Online

Milking It

Liquid or powder?

Fonterra, the biggest exporter of milk powder to Sri Lanka, may have a new battle on its hands.

Failed legal action

UK vegan and animal rights groups have failed in a bid to ban an advertising campaign promoting meat and dairy…

» Connect with Dairy News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter