08 June 2011

1080 must not be banned – Environment Commissioner

Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment Dr Jan Wright has today released a report investigating the use of 1080 – Evaluating the use of 1080: Predators, poisons and silent forests.

In the report Dr Wright recommends against a moratorium on 1080 citing the damage that would be done to native forests and animals if such a ban went ahead.

“Possums, rats and stoats are chewing up our forests to the point that we are only a generation away from seeing regional extinctions of kiwis and other native species where no pest control is carried out.

"There are other pest control methods that are more suitable than 1080 in certain circumstances but on much of our conservation land there is currently nothing else that will effectively kill possums, rats and stoats.

"While there may be an alternative to 1080 one day, if we want to keep our forests for future generations we simply cannot afford to stop using 1080. Time is not a luxury we have.

"So many of our native forests, birds, reptiles and insects are unlike those found anywhere else in the world and form a distinct part of our identity. It would be a travesty to allow these to disappear."

The report will be tabled in Parliament today and recommends that:

  1. Parliament does not support a moratorium on 1080.
  2. The Minister for the Environment investigate ways to simplify and standardise the way 1080 and other poisons for pest mammal control are managed under the Resource Management Act and other relevant legislation.
  3. The Minister of Conservation establishes the Game Animal Council as an advisory body that works collaboratively with the Department of Conservation, but ensures that responsibility for all pest control remains with the department.
  4. The Minister of Justice introduces an amendment to the Ombudsmen Act 1975 to add the Animal Health Board to Part 2 of Schedule 1 of the Act, and thereby make the Animal Health Board also subject to the Official Information Act 1982.
  5. The Minister of Conservation asks the Department of Conservation to prioritise the development of national policy and operational procedures on possum fur harvesting.
  6. The Minister of Conservation improve information about pest control on the conservation estate by providing consistent and accessible information on the Department of Conservation website, including the purposes and results of different pest control operations.


A PDF of the report is available here.

A short explanation of the report is available on youtube here.