This section contains information about the assessment of the likely benefit to New Zealand arising from the factor relating to indigenous vegetation and habitats of indigenous fauna.
Whether there are or will be adequate mechanisms in place for protecting or enhancing existing areas of significant indigenous vegetation and significant habitats of indigenous fauna, for example, any 1 or more of the following:
- conditions as to pest control, fencing, fire control, erosion control, or riparian planting:
- covenants over the land (s17(2)(b))?
Key elements of this factor
There are three key elements to this factor:
- The relevant land must contain significant existing:
- areas of indigenous vegetation; or
- habitats of indigenous fauna.
- There must be adequate mechanisms in place or proposed to protect or enhance the significant area or habitat.
- The protection or enhancement of the significant area or habitat that is likely to result from the overseas investment must be additional to that which is likely to occur without the overseas investment.
Significant areas of indigenous vegetation or habitats of indigenous fauna
This factor applies where the relevant land includes existing areas of significant indigenous vegetation or significant habitats of indigenous fauna.
Indigenous vegetation refers to trees or plants native to New Zealand. Habitats of indigenous fauna include areas such as trees where native birds live or streams populated by native fish.
An applicant must show that the area or habitat is ‘significant’. A small number of native seedlings in a garden is unlikely to be significant, however a single 1000 year old kauri tree, or larger area of native bush may be.
Protecting or enhancing a significant area or habitat
The applicant must show that the overseas investment will result in adequate mechanisms to protect or enhance the significant area or habitat. Examples of protection and enhancement mechanisms include but are not limited to:
- conditions as to pest control, fencing, fire control, erosion control, or riparian planting; or
- covenants over the land.
In order to demonstrate a benefit under this factor, an applicant needs to show new or enhanced mechanisms for protecting and enhancing significant habitats. The benefit associated with enduring mechanisms, such as conservation covenants, is given greater weight than corresponding temporary measures.
A commitment to implement specific mechanisms will be given significantly greater weight than an agreement to consult with a relevant entity.
The continuation of current adequate mechanisms is unlikely to demonstrate any benefit.
Consultation with the Department of Conservation
Where the relevant land contains existing areas or habitats applicants are encouraged to contact the Department of Conservation before making an application to help identify the relevance of this factor and the most appropriate mechanism for the protection or enhancement of the existing areas or habitats.
Making a claim
Provide the following information when making a claim under this factor:
- Significant Area or Habitat:
A description of the significant area of indigenous vegetation or significant habitat of indigenous fauna and the reason why it is significant.
- Current protection or enhancement:
Details of the current measures in place to protect or enhance the significant area or habitat.
How the overseas investment will result in the protection or enhancement of a significant area of indigenous vegetation or habitat of indigenous fauna. For example the measures the applicant intends to take to protect or enhance the significant area or habitat and how they will be implemented.
The expenditure (if any) required.
When the protection or enhancement of the significant area or habitat is likely to occur.
The protection or enhancement that is likely to occur without the overseas investment.
Anything that may prevent the protection or enhancement of the significant area or habitat (for example, consents, approvals).
Conditions of consent
All consents are granted subject to conditions. Consent conditions will generally require consent holders to deliver, and report on, the benefits claimed in their application. The OIO monitors all consents to ensure that conditions are complied with.
Where the OIO considers that this factor is relevant to an application, an applicant may be required to consult with the Department of Conservation and implement any reasonable mechanisms recommended as a condition of consent even if the applicant does not make a claim under this factor.