Our natural environment plays a critical role in delivering social, cultural, economic and environmental outcomes for Aucklanders.
We value our natural environment for:
- identity, wellbeing and belonging (relational values)
- its own sake and worth (intrinsic values)
- the resources and benefits it provides us (instrumental values).
It provides us with opportunities to diversify and strengthen our economy in sectors like tourism, agriculture and horticulture and green technology innovation.
The mana whenua of Tāmaki Makaurau have a deep, inseparable relationship with the
wai and sites of significance.
Their identity, wellbeing and culture comes from the natural environment. As such, they have an inherent obligation to protect and regenerate the taiao (natural environment).
Cultural heritage relates to how we live in a community. It includes customs, values and practices that are passed from one generation to the next.
The natural environment is linked to Auckland's shared cultural heritage. It provides an anchor for the sense of belonging that communities have to their place.
The natural environment and our shared cultural heritage are central to attracting the visitors, skills and investment that help to drive our prosperity.
However, many of our treasured natural environments, ecosystems, indigenous species and sites of cultural significance are already under significant pressure from human activity, and some are in decline.
To reverse this decline, all Aucklanders must play their part in ensuring that the natural environment and cultural heritage is valued and cared for.
We must better understand and recognise the life-sustaining benefits the natural environment provides, as well as the critical role it plays in shaping and sustaining Auckland's future. We must also consider the richness that cultural heritage brings to our lives.
We must actively seek opportunities to protect and enhance these values through our short and long-term decisions.
Find out more by reading The Health of Auckland's Natural Environment in 2015 report.