This project looks at Tairāwhiti’s environment as a whole, beyond just the urban environment, and will help us understand:
- what we know and what we don’t know about the indigenous biodiversity of Tairāwhiti
- gaps in our knowledge and how we can fill those gaps
- the current state of indigenous biodiversity in Tairāwhiti, what species and ecosystems are thriving, what is under threat and why
- what new central government legislation requires us to do in relation to indigenous biodiversity
- when we review our Regional Policy Statement and Tairāwhiti Resource Management Plan, and how do we make sure we meet those requirements?
This work will help guide our future biodiversity work, including how we work with landowners to protect biodiversity on private land and meet our statutory requirements. Outcomes of future work will sit alongside the Urban Biodiversity Action Plan. Both will support the development of a Tairāwhiti Regional Biodiversity Strategy and the policy direction through the Tairāwhiti Resource Management Plan review.
Urban development has the potential to adversely impact indigenous vegetation & biodiversity, if these areas are not recognised within the Tairāwhiti Resource Management Plan framework. Indigenous vegetation & biodiversity needs to be considered in an urban setting through the Growth and Development workstream to ensure that adequate recognition, protection and management of these areas are provided as we plan for future growth.
While vegetation is an accepted part of our urban environment, its protection and management can cause conflict with urban development. The Urban Biodiversity Action Plan will also consider the biodiversity linkages between the urban and rural environments.
Tairāwhiti 2050 Spatial Plan
Within our Tairāwhiti 2050 Spatial Plan there is an outcome which includes:
- the intrinsic value of ecosystems and biodiversity is recognised
- there is no further loss of significant natural, cultural or historic heritage
- key areas of the environment have been restored as Tairāwhiti grows
- active guardianship is practiced by all.
A community aspiration is for Gisborne to be a green city with an abundance of trees for shade, amenity and biodiversity. This includes recognising opportunities to use our parks and waterways to support ecological services through planting as corridors, or stepping stones, to link up other biodiversity hot spots in the region.
The aim of this project is to determine the current state of indigenous biodiversity within urban Gisborne, including gathering all available data and mapping indigenous vegetation within the urban boundary. This will help us understand what the major threats are to urban biodiversity, what opportunities and actions we could take to best protect, restore and increase what we have, as well as how we monitor the success of these actions.
Consultation with the community is an important part of finding out where the valued areas of biodiversity are, what actions we should focus on what will be considered the Future Development Strategy.