Environment Canterbury has welcomed the move by Fonterra to protect water quality in dairying regions by requiring suppliers to fence all waterways covered by the Clean Streams Accord.
“Improving water quality in natural waterways throughout Canterbury is one of the most important issues facing land and water users, as well as Environment Canterbury,” said Environment Canterbury Commissioner David Caygill.
“The move by Fonterra will ensure we continue to make progress in improving water quality by restricting stock access to natural waterways.
“It also strengthens the voluntary measures under the Clean Streams Accord signed eight years ago by Fonterra, regional councils, Ministry for the Environment, and the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.”
Environment Canterbury In June this year introduced new rules to exclude stock from natural waterways in its operative Canterbury Natural Resources Regional Plan.
“Our simple message to farmers is they should be putting measures in place to ensure stock are kept out of natural waterways to safeguard and improve water quality.
“There is growing acceptance and understanding among farmers that they must continue to lift their environmental performance and be seen to be doing so,” said David Caygill.
Environment Canterbury is introducing additional rules in June 2012 which completely prohibit all intensively farmed stock from entering natural waterways in Canterbury.
Environment Canterbury is also working collaboratively with Fonterra, other dairy companies, industry organisations and farmers to ensure water quality is safeguarded by good stock management practices.
Techniques to ensure stock are kept out of waterways include fencing (even if only temporary), riparian planting to create a buffer and absorb nutrients between stock and waterways, installing bridges and culverts, and using restricted stock access drinking sites on waterways.