Lake Rotorua Catchment Stakeholder Advisory Group –Terms of Reference
The Rotorua Te Arawa Lakes Strategy Group (Strategy Group) was established under the Te Arawa Lakes Settlement Act 2006 and is a co-governance entity that brings together representatives of the Te Arawa Lakes Trust, Bay of Plenty Regional Council (BoPRC) and Rotorua District Council (RDC). The Strategy Group is tasked with the providing the overall direction for the Programme and is the key funding decision-making body. The Strategy Group’s vision is:
“promotion of the sustainable management of the Rotorua Lakes and their catchments, and for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations, while recognising and providing for the traditional relationship of Te Arawa with their ancestral lakes”.
In March 2008, central government agreed to contribute $72.1 million over ten years to implement the Rotorua Lakes Protection and Restoration Programme, amounting to 50 per cent of the total cost ($144.2m). In early 2012 the Strategy Group recommended that $45.5m be allocated for incentives to reduce nitrogen leaching from rural land in the Lake Rotorua catchment by approximately 200 tonnes. Additional reductions are needed to meet sustainable loads and BoPRC has approved the development of rules to help meet the estimated combined reduction of 270 tonnes needed from rural land.
A public forum of stakeholders was held in August 2012 with the support of the Strategy Group partners. The forum recommended the formation of the Lake Rotorua Catchment Stakeholder Advisory Group to advise on the design and implementation of rules and incentives to achieve the nutrient target reductions from rural land.
The main purpose of the Lake Rotorua Catchment Stakeholder Advisory Group (the “Group”) is:
The Group shall also:
Group advisory, engagement and reporting functions
Group composition, member selection, chairing and quorum
Limitation of powers
Group support, liaison and remuneration
Term and review
Lake Rotorua’s water quality target is formally represented by a “Trophic Level Index” (TLI) value of 4.2. The Proposed Regional Policy Statement states that sustainable annual nitrogen load corresponding to this TLI value is 435 tonnes (tN/y).
Nutrient reduction targets means the reductions needed in nitrogen and phosphorus loads from the catchment, in order to achieve Lake Rotorua’s water quality target of TLI = 4.2. To achieve the sustainable annual nitrogen load of 435 tN/y, the overall reduction is 320 tN/y, with a rural component of 270 tN/y.
Rural land means agricultural and forest land, including dairy, drystock (sheep, beef, deer etc), cropping, horticulture, exotic plantation, native bush/forest, lifestyle blocks and land with gorse and scrub vegetation.
Consensus decision-making is a group decision making process that seeks the consent – not necessarily the agreement – of participants and the resolution of objections. Consensus is defined by Merriam-Webster as, first, general agreement, and second, group solidarity of belief or sentiment. It is used to describe both the decision and the process of reaching a decision.
Tikanga (noun) correct procedure, custom, habit, lore, method, manner, rule, way, code, meaning, plan, practice, convention.
 This could include Federated Farmers, Fish & Game, Department of Conservation, Ministry for the Environment, Ministry of Primary Industries, rural professionals, scientists, economists, landowners, staff and elected members from other regions etc.
 Catchment modelling by NIWA using the ROTAN model estimates a “steady state” N load based on current land use = 755 tN/y (including all land, sewage, geothermal, rainfall etc). To achieve a sustainable N load of 435 tN/y, a reduction of 320 tN/y is needed. The potential reduction from engineering actions (sewage reticulation, Tikitere geothermal treatment etc) is 50 tN/y. This means a 270 tN/y reduction is needed from rural land.