Ninth dairy conversion since new water rule

20:31, Jul 30 2013

Environment Southland approved its ninth new dairy farm conversion yesterday since the controversial regional water plan's rule 16C came into effect early last year.

The approval comes after the regional council put its deliberations over the proposed changes to the regional water plan, plan change 13 (new dairy farming), on hold last week while it considered additional information from a submitter.

Edendale dairy farmers Ken and Jill Muir were granted a resource consent to convert their 200ha Wyndham property to dairying at the regional council's consent committee.

As part of the requirements under the new rule, the couple provided a farm environmental management plan, a nutrient budget and management plan, and fenced off all riparian areas.

However, Mr Muir suggested the 20-day consent period be extended to 40 days to allow farmers more time to gather additional information, as the process required a high level of detail.

Committee chairman Maurice Rodway said all consent applications since the rule came into effect had been granted and were of a high quality. If the plan change goes ahead, all new dairy farm conversions will need to obtain resource consent before becoming operational. 

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The Southland Times