We need to break out of the constraints that caused earlier initiatives to fail.
We know we have a problem, but it's not well defined for people to engage with, and yet there is a sense of urgency to "stop the rot".
It's all about changing perceptions and leading communities to know and care for their marine environment.
Things need to be framed in terms of the four well beings. We need to understand the limits before we "hit the wall" and stop being GDP driven. Our aim is to capture hearts and minds and reduce negative behaviour by a wide range of parties.
This is a unique and dynamic environment. It is also heavily modified. It is sheltered and easy to access. It is also a nursery ground that needs to be protected.
We have to work with reality of gravity and realise the benthic environment is the sink for everything. Sediment from land and activities that directly disturb the seabed are the two biggest issues. Action on these is both urgent and important.
There is a lot of knowledge and also big gaps. Current information is scattered and hard to engage.
We need independent science and it needs to be communicated.
We need Marlborough data about sediment and the effects of activities that disturb the seabed including time series data for near bottom turbidity.
We also need information on things that may be important but where the effects are less obvious. These include: climate change, denitrification, the role of Cook Strait, rates of recovery and spatial data on the distribution of habitats and of their condition.
Social information is important. We need to know which areas people value and what they value there.
We need to understand patterns of use particularly in relation to fishing.
Who can help?
Everyone - we all play a part!
Communities - engaged in the process, owning our commons both for use and protection.
Wider iwi of Te Tau Ihu - kaitiaki, co-governors, Treaty partners.
Industry and environmental groups - stop using advocates to get their way and participate in better management and data gathering.
Land users - good management practices and contributing to research.
Tourism operators - taking a wider perspective.
Recreating locals and public - acting responsibly and respecting limits and being open to new ideas.
Education providers and leaders - educating for sustainability and changing attitudes.
Young people - fresh approaches and great ambassadors.
Dedicated politicians, national and regional - supporting community initiatives and cutting through slow processes.
Territorial authorities - regulating land use, activities that damage the seabed and creating public awareness.
Government organisations - integrating their responsibilities for nearly everything including fishing, biosecurity, marine protected areas and Crown land.
Philanthropists - funding.
MSIM trustees - leadership and plan development.
- Get community buy in.
- Get agencies on board with funding and other support.
- MPI - QMS review and refinement - smaller paddocks, stop dredging and bottom trawling.
- MfE - NPS/NES - good ones this time!
- Free buried information.
- Stop destructive fishing methods.
- Stop further degradation.
- Rank the issues together (consensus)
- Get alignment with present law.
- We all need to be part of the solution.
- Independent advice.
Journalists and advocates:
- Generate "the story" to capture hearts and minds.
Longer term actions
Central and local government with stakeholders and scientists:
- ID and characterise benthic habitats.
- Restore ecosystems, rebalance ecosystem/food chain, habitat and stock rebuild.
- QMS reviews.
- Spatially explicit management.
- Protect critical areas.
- Public education.
- Monitor effectives of actions.
- Learn from the past to set future strategy.
- Work with gravity and accept that what goes into the marine environment needs to have acceptable long-term outcomes.