Reclassifying stewardship land on the West Coast

Published date08 February 2023
Publication titleWest Coast Farming Times, The
Stewardship land is land that DOC acquired when it was formed in 1987 but was never classified. It includes former state forests and Crown land considered to have conservation value

For 18 months or so, DOC has been reviewing 504 pieces of stewardship land on the West Coast to ensure that land with conservation and cultural values is protected for future generations.

Public submissions on DOC's recommendations from this review closed a few months ago.

Herenga Nuku Aotearoa, the Outdoor Access Commission, submitted on the review and has been regularly advocating that DOC protect public access when it reclassifies stewardship land. No matter the land's status, people should be able to enjoy it. This should include enduring practical access to public conservation lands and waters, rivers, lakes or the coast.

The criteria for assessing public access need to consider current outdoor recreation needs and those in the future.

The Conservation Act 1987 gives people free entry to and use of conservation areas. People mustn't accidentally lose this right, for example if DOC disposes of stewardship land as part of its reclassification.

One access issue that is particularly important to West Coasters is access to and along rivers. Practical access to the river will change as the course of the river moves - and West Coast rivers, where, as we know, rainfall can be remarkably high and often intense, are mobile. While the land remains conservation land, public access is available. If it is disposed of, then we need to...

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT