3 March 2023 – Draft Hauraki Gulf Fisheries Plan consultation closed
From 17 January to 3 March 2023, Fisheries New Zealand sought public feedback on the draft Hauraki Gulf Fisheries Plan. We're now reviewing the submissions we received.
Development of a Hauraki Gulf Fisheries Plan is one of the key actions in Revitalising the Gulf.
The draft plan sets out an ecosystem-based approach to managing fisheries, and the effects of fishing, within the Hauraki Gulf. If approved, it will be New Zealand's first area-based fisheries plan.
Draft Hauraki Gulf Fisheries Plan [PDF, 4.5 MB]
Consultation on the draft plan
28 October 2022 – Marine protection consultation closed
From 14 September to 28 October 2022, the Department of Conservation (DOC) sought feedback on the marine protection proposals developed from Revitalising the Gulf.
This included proposals to establish 19 new protected zones in the Hauraki Gulf, using 2 new marine protection tools established through new legislation.
DOC's website has details about the closed consultation.
Restoring the health and mauri of the Hauraki Gulf
Revitalising the Gulf provides Government leadership across how we manage one of the country's most valued and intensively used coastal spaces. It sets out a package of marine conservation and fisheries management actions to restore a healthy Hauraki Gulf.
Revitalising the Gulf is the Government's strategy in response to the call for action made by the 2017 Sea Change – Tai Timu Tai Pari – Hauraki Gulf Marine Spatial Plan.
The Sea Change Plan set out over 180 recommendations to improve and protect the waiora (health) and mauri (life force) of the gulf, created by a group representing mana whenua, communities, and local government.
Plan for action
The Department of Conservation (DOC) and Fisheries New Zealand (FNZ) are leading implementation of the actions contained in the strategy, which focuses on supporting recovery and protecting habitats and species, developing sustainable management and industry, and working together with mana whenua and local communities to deliver a healthier gulf for generations to come.
Revitalising the Gulf: Government action on the Sea Change Plan [PDF, 4.7 MB]
At a glance: Summary of Revitalising the Gulf [PDF, 2.1 MB]
Draft Hauraki Gulf Fisheries Plan
One of the key actions in the Revitalising the Gulf strategy is the development of a fisheries plan for the Hauraki Gulf.
This is New Zealand's first area-based fisheries plan to be approved under section 11A of the Fisheries Act and is tailored to the needs and challenges of the gulf and its communities.
It will set out new proposals for managing and sustaining healthy fisheries for customary, recreational, and commercial uses. This includes progressing an ecosystem-based fisheries management approach, which looks at understanding the bigger picture in managing a marine environment, including all the ways it is valued and the people that use it.
As part of this inclusive, unified approach, a monitoring and indicator framework is being developed, with tangata whenua and the Sustainable Seas National Science Challenge
The draft plan will contribute to the following outcomes in the Hauraki Gulf:
- locally abundant fish stocks
- restoration of important habitats
- strengthened fisheries management
- improved understanding of stocks, fisheries, and ecosystems.
Following public consultation, if approved by the Minister, the Hauraki Gulf Fisheries Plan will become operational in 2023.
Establishing bottom trawl and Danish seine access areas (Trawl Corridors)
One of the most significant changes proposed for the Hauraki Gulf is the removal of bottom trawl and Danish seine fishing methods, except within carefully selected access areas or "trawl corridors".
We acknowledge there is significant interest in this initiative, and the wide range of views on the extent to which bottom contact fishing should be permitted in the Hauraki Gulf. Recognising this, Fisheries New Zealand has been progressing the Trawl Corridors Project in parallel with developing the wider Fisheries Plan.
Establishing trawl corridors is a management action in the draft Fisheries Plan, signalling the commitment to progressing this key piece of work. This action is part of a suite of measures within the plan to help achieve the objectives and long-term desired outcomes for fisheries. We welcome feedback on these, including the proposal to establish trawl corridors, during public consultation on the draft plan.
To ensure an informed and evidenced-based approach, Fisheries New Zealand commissioned a research project to support development of optimal trawl corridors options. This research commenced in 2022 and a Hauraki Gulf specific spatial planning tool is now in place.
In early 2023, Fisheries New Zealand will work to finalise options for trawl corridors, using this spatial planning tool. We will also seek input from treaty partners, key stakeholders and the Hauraki Gulf Fisheries Plan Advisory Group.
A critical part of establishing optimal trawl corridors will be seeking people's views on the best way forward, and we aim to publicly consult on trawl corridors options in mid-2023.
Following public consultation, the Oceans and Fisheries Minister will be provided with advice and submissions from the public to support making final decisions on where bottom trawling and Danish seining will be permitted in the Hauraki Gulf.
A regulatory process will then be required to bring the finalised trawl corridors into effect.
More information on other initiatives underway to manage the effects of bottom trawling in New Zealand
Working with our Treaty partners and stakeholders
Many individuals, groups and communities have an interest in the Hauraki Gulf. The draft Fisheries Plan has been developed with input from a wide range of partners and stakeholders, including mana whenua.
We heard a range of views from iwi during two rounds of engagement, between June 2019 and September 2020, and between October 2021 and June 2022, to help shape final proposals in the draft plan. Following consultation, Fisheries New Zealand will continue to work with our treaty partners to finalise and implement the plan.
Hauraki Gulf Fisheries Plan Advisory Group
This was established in May 2022 to support the development and implementation of The Fisheries Plan. Members have expertise in fisheries management, fisheries science and environmental policy and represent a range of fisheries management interests:
- Martin Cryer – Chair
- Mark Ngata (Moana NZ)
- Laws Lawson (Fisheries Inshore NZ)
- Raewyn Peart (Environmental Defence Society)
- Geoff Keey (Forest and Bird)
- Rowan Ashton (New Zealand Sports Fishing Council)
- Tony Orton (Offshore Adventures)
- Mark Morrison (NIWA)
- Dave Allen (Auckland Council)
- Chris Staite (Waikato Regional Council)
Members are supported by representatives from Fisheries New Zealand and the Department of Conservation.
Who to contact
If you have questions about Revitalising the Gulf, email firstname.lastname@example.org