Biodiversity Policy

At TOP we completely embrace our role as kaitiaki / custodians of our natural world, and accept that it is our responsibility to recognise the limits of our natural capital. 


Biodiversity is responsible for our ability to withstand climate change, support our freshwater and marine life, grow crops and farm animals, and it supports our tourism and primary industries. It underpins our ecosystems, landscapes, economy, health, recreation and kaitiakitanga.

True prosperity for New Zealand literally comes from the protection and enhancement of our biodiversity.

TOPs approach

  • Biodiversity planning - reward those who protect and enhance, and charge those that don't with the full cost of their failure.
  • Marine - TOP supports marine spatial planning and would expect circa 30% of New Zealand waters to be set aside as protected areas.
  • Native forests - use indigenous species forestry to meet our international and domestic goals.
  • Native birds - continue and enhance pest control to protect our indigenous species from extinction.
  • Monitoring & compliance - we can’t change or cost what we can’t measure. TOP will address the chronic underfunding for measurement, compliance and enforcement of our national biodiversity policies.
  • Stewardship - resolve Land Stewardship reclassification disputes to ensure that areas we need for biodiversity are able to thrive and succeed for the long term.


  • We will account for the true value of New Zealand’s biodiversity in our national business, accounting and reporting systems by introducing explicit and systematic conservation performance measures.
  • We will address the costs of lost biodiversity on private land, and value the benefits private landowners give society when they conserve, protect and restore biodiversity.
  • For those that do cause harm to our environment, whether private or business, we will introduce environmental taxes. Under this polluter-pays approach TOP also supports environmental bonds. This means those who are issued consents for projects based on promises of future restoration are required to put money into a trust before the work commences.
  • We will create an oversight system that addresses conflicts of responsibility, separating adjudicating from implementation oversight, and ensure DOC is free to advocate for conservation, protection and restoration of biodiversity.

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