The South-East Marine Protection Forum met in Dunedin for two days on 28 and 29 May in final preparation before beginning their site-specific deliberations.
Prior to this meeting, the Forum had been working on gathering together a number of resources to assist in its deliberations. These resources include an independent Summary of Submissions, an independent Summary of Science Submissions, and Forum members’ own Stakeholder Summaries of Submissions. The compilation of all of these resources has been a mammoth effort given that the raw data being summarised has equalled more than 10,000 pages of submitters’ feedback.
The Forum chair, Maree Baker- Galloway says there’s a renewed vigour and sense of purpose around the table now that the site-specific deliberations are to begin.
“It has been a little frustrating not being able to get on with our deliberations, but I believe the wait has been worth it as we now have a wealth of information readily accessible to inform our decision making.”
The Forum, which has requested more time to deliver its Recommendation Report to Ministers, is still in dialogue with the supporting government agencies on what would be a mutually acceptable and realistic timeframe. A decision on the revised timeframe is expected in the near future.
The Forum are scheduled to reconvene in early June to continue with deliberations.