Since the publication of the submission report late last year (along with some encouraging press coverage) followed by our conversation with Minister Maggie Barry earlier this year, the Fish Forever team is working hard to find the best path forward to reach our goals. Our commitment is steadfast (we still want marine reserves!) but the story is multi-layered and every decision has its own set of complications. (News: May/June 2015)
At a local level there is work to do to fully engage hapū and address concerns from some recreational fishers, whilst on a legislative level it is likely that marine protection planning processes will change under this government. If this new legislation arrives in the near future we will be looking at engaging our community in a whole new process with an emphasis on engagement and collaboration – more on this soon.
On the side, the team is exploring ideas for locally-led projects that will help galvanise the community for the bigger steps to come. We also continue to gather essential ecological data about the state of the Bay's marine environment through various monitoring processes.