Environment Minister Nick Smith has appointed a special tribunal to consider an application for a Water Conservation order on Hawke's Bay's Ngaruroro and Clive Rivers.
The tribunal will consider an application by the New Zealand Fish and Game Council, Hawke’s Bay Fish and Game Council, Ngāti Hori ki Kohupatiki, Whitewater New Zealand, Jet Boating New Zealand, and the Royal Forest and Bird Protection Society of New Zealand to protect the outstanding values of the Ngaruroro and Clive rivers.
The tribunal will be chaired by Wellington Queen's Counsel Richard Fowler, who has chaired two previous special tribunals to consider the Buller and Kawarau water conservation orders. The other members are solicitor Alec Neill, hearing commissioner Dr Roger Maaka, environmental scientist Dr Ngaire Phillips and agribusiness specialist John McCliskie.
Water Conservation Orders are set up to recognise and sustain waters considered to be outstanding as a habitat or fishery, or for scenic, scientific or recreational values. Once made, an order is able to restrict resource use to protect these outstanding values.
The public will be invited to make submissions on the application, and the tribunal will then hold a hearing before reporting back to Dr Smith with recommendations. The tribunal’s findings can be appealed to the Environment Court.