DairyNZ CE Tim Mackle says “we believe so strongly that kiwis care about waterways that we’re starting a movement, where the vision is clear – we want all new Zealanders to do their bit to look after rivers, lakes and beaches and you can find out more at thevisionisclear.co.nz”
Dairy has an important role to play, as about 15% of New Zealand’s streams run through dairy farms.
“And dairy farmers have been doing their bit, with 97% of waterways on a dairy farm fenced off from stock, and significant work to put in riparian margins and wetlands. Farmers over the last ten years have also been significantly investing in effluent management systems that work with the land and DairyNZ continues to invest millions of dollars into research, science and technology that will look after our waterways, says Dr Mackle.
“Claims that intensified farming contributes to water quality declines are both accurate and misleading. The reality is that all types of land use contribute to water quality – and that farming, whether it’s vegetables, fruit, beef, sheep, dairy, deer or even wine – must all work together to make sure waterways are protected.
“The most polluted rivers actually run through urban centers, and this is where the public can do their bit too.
“Farmers, industry and businesses who don’t prioritise looking after waterways, should be held accountable” says Dr Mackle.
Tim Mackle spoke to RadioLive on 3 January about the public’s views on water quality and the role we all need to play in looking after waterways.
For more information, please contact DairyNZ's Senior Communication Manager Lee Cowan on 021930836.