impact assessment

What effects must be avoided, remediated or mitigated to maintain indigenous biodiversity?

New Zealand’s Resource Management Act requires avoiding, remedying or mitigating effects of human activities on the environment, including taking action to maintain terrestrial indigenous biodiversity. Here, we suggest that maintaining biodiversity requires halting its current decline, and to achieve that, New Zealand must move away from deeming only significant ecosystems and biota worthy of protection. We identify effects that must be avoided in order to maintain biodiversity, and those to be avoided unless they can be fully and promptly remediated.