The job losses at DOC will be difficult for those affected but Director General Al Morrison says:
. . . the new structure will maintain DOC’s own conservation delivery work while setting the department up to work more effectively with external partners.
“DOC must adapt if it is going to meet the conservation challenges that New Zealand faces – even if you doubled DOC’s budget tomorrow we would still be going ahead with this proposal.” . . .
There is no way the department’s budget could double in the current economic climate but has anyone asked why it would need to?
Could it have anything to do with the many thousands of extra hectares that have been added to the conservation estate under tenure review?
The costs of looking after the land are high enough when it’s part of a farming operation, the costs will be higher when done in isolation as DOC has to.
Left wing environment groups are upset at the prospect of the job losses but they are also the ones which advocate for more pastoral lease land to be retired under tenure review without any thought of the extra costs this imposes on DOC.
They also don’t acknowledge that the reason the land they want retired has high conservation values is due to the care of successive lessees and that if they were permitted to continue to care for it they would do so at no cost to the taxpayer.