Wetlands have become increasingly valued over recent years, especially since:
Wetlands are important because they:
Many wetlands are:
About 95% of wetlands on private land have been lost in Tasman. This makes the remaining wetlands very valuable and something special.
Wetlands are defined in the Resource Management Act and the Tasman Resource Management Plan as being permanently or intermittently wet areas, shallow water and land-water margins that support a natural ecosystem of plants and animals that are adapted to wet conditions.
A wetland becomes dry land where the plant species typical of terrestrial environments cover over 80% of the area. Vegetation is used as it is an indicator of the hydrology of the site over a long period.
In its mapping, Council uses a list of wetland plants compiled by leading wetland ecologists and published by Landcare Research.
The Resource Management Act (RMA) requires Council to include provisions for management of wetlands in the Tasman Resource Management Plan (TRMP). These provisions were introduced in 2001 and became operative in 2004.
The Tasman District Council is undertaking a project to identify and map all wetlands in the region as part of their requirements under the Resource Management Act. The mapping is initially based on information Council already has, such as aerial and satellite images, and then refined through site visits. This will improve the ability to make good land management decisions and help both landowners and Council to know more precisely where rules will apply.
Some commercial agreements rely on Councils to provide information. For example: