Farmers are the stewards of the land and strive to improve the land. Now, that has to be shown to the wider community.
Farm environment plans (FEP) are the means to do this. The aim of a FEP is to identify and then take actions to manage the environmental risks on your property. They help achieve good management practice (GMP)
There are five key management areas that farmers must consider. 1. Irrigation Management, 2. Nutrient Management, 3. Soils Management, 4. Collected Effluent Management, 5. Riparian, Wetland and Biodiversity Management.
WIL require you have one for your property by September 2016. They are fully auditable and this will be a requirement in the future. As part of your FEP an ‘overseer’ nutrient budget must be completed. • It must be for the 2014/15 year in version 6.2 (or later) and completed for regulatory purposes. This is all part of our commitment to environmental improvement and environmental stewardship.
How Waimakairiri Irrigation uses an online, Environment Canterbury approved, Farm Environment Plan (FEP) template to capture, track, and improve farm management practices. The template has been developed in conjunction with Opuha Water ltd in South Canterbury. All FEP will be required to use this template. Why Both our recent water take and land use consents require WIL to ensuer all shareholders complete a FEP. Also in late 2016 the Waimakariri zone is going to have the sub-regional planning process to determine the quantity and quality limits for the many waterways, lakes and rivers which feature in our region. The information collected using FEP’s across the WIL catchment will be invaluable going into the sub-regional planning process.
WIL have contracted Paul Reese, Environmental consultant with Irricon, to manage the completion of plans plans by September 2016. For more information on the FEP online tool and to help complete the FEP’s on farm Paul can be contacted on 0277 31 44 33 or firstname.lastname@example.org
As a cooperative irrigation scheme the coordinated approach will ensure best practice is achieved on farm and WIL is in the best possible position to enable our shareholders to continue viable and productive businesses while maintaining flexibility of land use. FEP’s will demonstrate how the use of natural resources is being actively managed to achieve high standards of environmental performance and responsible water use.
The FEP covers the five farm management areas and objectives are set for each of these topics and farmers retain flexibility as to how they achieve them. The online tool allows shareholders to log on and complete or update their plans from any computer. WIL is assisting shareholders to develop FEP’s specific to each property, funded through the annual water charges.
To get the FEP process underway with a user name and password for the online tool contact Paul Reese on 0277 31 44 33 or email@example.com