Almost an Island Conference programme
Saturday 25th August, 2007Please note that speakers/times are subject to change.
Title: 'Almost an Island - Valuing Otago Peninsula'
Is biodiversity conservation paying it's way?: The social and economic benefits of conserving nature on Otago Peninsula.
Closing date for registrations is 30 September 2007. Click here to download a registration form
THURSDAY 11TH OCTOBER
Otago Peninsula tour (optional ˝ day tour, 12:30 - 4:30 pm) NUMBERS PERMITTING.
Spend half a day with trustees/staff from the Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust on a guided tour around the Otago Peninsula seeing Trust sites, including a visit to their plant nursery. Cost includes transport and refreshments.
Price to be notified, so please do not include money until confirmed whether this will go ahead.
FRIDAY 12TH OCTOBER
The conference will begin with a Mihi Whakatau, a welcome to all conference delegates, speakers and visitors by the local Otakou Runanga.
Opening Speeches / Welcome
Hon Damien O'Connor, Minister of Tourism
Peter Chin, Mayor Dunedin City
Anton Oliver, Patron, Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust
Euan Kennedy, Trustee, Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust
Key Note Speaker - Professor Clem Tisdell
From the University of Queensland, Australia, Professor Tisdell's presentation is titled "The economic importance of wildlife conservation on Otago Peninsula - 20 years on" This follows on from his 1987 study of "The economic potential of the wildlife on the Otago Peninsula, particularly the yellow-eyed penguin, for tourism".
People invest values in environmental resources, even if they don't benefit from them directly. The values we place on these resources condition our response to investment initiatives.
Existence Value sessions will explore the different values placed on the Otago Peninsula over time - what has been in the past, what is now, and what could be in the future.
Session 1: Existence Values - What Was
Professor Richard Holdaway:
A palaeobiologist from the University of Canterbury
What was the Otago Peninsula like before people arrived? Professor Holdaway will look at the historical biodiversity of the peninsula, and the effects on it since human arrival and the introduction of mammalian predators.
Dr Peter Johnson:
A Peninsula resident and botanist with the DSIR and then Landcare Research. Dr Johnson has a wide understanding of the vegetation of Otago Peninsula. His talk will discuss what we know about the vegetation cover before the impact of humans and subsequent changes down to the present day.
Session 2: Existence Values - What Is
Dr Ian Turnbull:
A geologist with the Dunedin office of Geological and Nuclear Sciences, he will look at the Otago Peninsula, how it was formed, as it currently exists in geological time, and issues relating to contemporary land use.
Dr Keith Probert:
From the Marine Studies Centre at the University of Otago, he will speak on the marine context of the Otago Peninsula and what makes it such a hotspot for terrestrial and marine life. He will explore the unique marine flora and fauna of the seas surrounding the peninsula, and also examine the effects of human activity and discuss priorities and options for marine conservation.
Currently works for the Otago Conservancy of the Department of Conservation, and before that the New Zealand Wildlife Service. With expertise in seabird and sea mammal biodiversity on the Otago Peninsula, he will examine both their historic and current conservation status and offer some thoughts on future conservation strategies.
Dr Bill Lee:
From Landcare Research, will ask many questions as he brings together the geological, ecological and wildlife strands from this session. Is the Otago Peninsula a flagship for conservation? Is it important enough in terms of biodiversity and ecosystems to be of regional, national or international conservation significance? Should local government be taking some responsibility for conserving wildlife and restoring ecosystems on the peninsula?
Session 3: Existence Values - What Could Be
Having spent years working for the Department of Conservation in the development of "mainland islands" in New Zealand, he will discuss the application of these ideas to the Otago Peninsula. He will look at what actions such as trapping and predator-proof fencing can accomplish, suggested adaptations and options for the Otago Peninsula, and potential difficulties of the "mainland island" idea.
Dr Colin Meurk:
He works for Landcare Research, and will speak about restoration of habitats in the context of both Otago Peninsula biodiversity and cultural landscapes. What are the reasons for undertaking restoration, and what benefits could it provide to both the native animal and plant communities and the residents of the peninsula and Dunedin City?
Chairman of the Auckland Regional Council, he will provide examples of successful regional council involvement in the conservation of New Zealand's native biodiversity. He will explore opportunities for our city and regional council to be proactively involved in the future of the Otago Peninsula, and look at similarities and differences between the respective Auckland and Dunedin situations.
Once resources are identified, people identify and quantify opportunities to exploit them. Whether this is direct or indirect exploitation, option values are the values associated with these opportunities.
The Option Values Sessions will examine different ideas of "exploitation" of the resources on the Otago Peninsula, both what is currently happening and visions for the future.
Session 4: Option Values, Part 1
A founding trustee of the Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust. What were the aims of the Trust in the early days, have they been achieved and what are its aspirations for the future of biodiversity conservation on Otago Peninsula?
Naturalist and author, he is interested in the future of the Otago Peninsula as a protected nature precinct. He will discuss his vision of "Otago Peninsula as a World Heritage Area in the making" and the commitment that would be required from a number of different interests, including local government, ecotourism operators, iwi, residents and the Department of Conservation.
Speaking for Otakou Runanga, he will outline the runanga vision for biodiversity management on the Otago Peninsula. How were resources utilised in the past, and what are current policies and practice with regard to biodiversity, land use and conservation? The compatibility of pakeha conservation initiatives with Kai Tahu initiatives will also be explored.
Social Hour (5:30 - 6:45pm, Otago Museum)
Drinks and nibbles
Public Lecture 7pm
St David Street Lecture Theatre, University of Otago
Professor Clem Tisdell, leading international environmental economist
Title of talk to be confirmed
Conference Dinner 8:15pm (optional):
Cost $65.00 per person, cash bar available
SATURDAY 13TH OCTOBER
Session 5: Option Values, Part 2
Owner-operator of the pioneering yellow-eyed penguin tourism operation Penguin Place, he will outline his view for the future of nature-based tourism on the Otago Peninsula. He will look at the historical development of and current state of nature-based tourism on the Peninsula, and explore the future in terms of trends, potential problems, and sustainability of the industry.
Chief Executive of Tourism Dunedin, she will comment on the growth over the last 25 years of a local but nationally significant nature-based tourism industry on Otago Peninsula. She will look at questions of sustainability, is the owner-operator model prevalent on Otago Peninsula still the most appropriate, does the sector need more investment in the wildlife resource that underpins it and is it constrained by a lack of strategic planning and the absence of a large scale national operator?
CEO of Real Journeys operating out of Te Anau, he will look at the current state of the New Zealand nature-based tourism sector and examine ways of "Keeping it Real". How does Otago Peninsula fit into this vision? Is more development appropriate on Otago Peninsula and if it is how should it be managed? Does the Real Journeys experience in Fiordland offer ideas for Otago Peninsula?
Humans safeguard assets and resources for future generations - the same applies to biodiversity on the Otago Peninsula. Bequest values are not concerned with how we use resources now, but what we value preserving for the future.
The Bequest Value Session will look at what is being done, here and overseas, to preserve biodiversity for future generations.
Session 6: Bequest Values - What are We Leaving?
Dr Peter Dann:
Phillip Island Nature Park in Victoria, Australia. This successful operation combines conservation of wildlife, most notably little blue penguins, with nature-based tourism. The Nature Park with 500,000 visitors per annum and a turnover of $12million makes a substantial contribution to the local and wider Victorian economy, while also funding a significant biodiversity research programme. Is it a model for the future of nature-based tourism on Otago Peninsula?
Otago Conservator for the Department of Conservation, he will discuss DOC's priorities, visions and strategies for the future of the Otago Peninsula. He will explore current strategies as well as explain DOC's plans for collaboration with other peninsula interests.
Dr John Jillett:
From the Otago Peninsula Trust, he will examine the role of the Otago Peninsula Trust in biodiversity conservation on the Otago Peninsula, the need for future investment in and protection of the peninsula flora and fauna, and collaborations with other like-minded organisations.
Representatives from several peninsula interests, including the Department of Conservation, Otago Peninsula Trust, nature-based tourism operators, farmers, and residents, will gather together at the end of the conference for a discussion on what has been learned over the last two days. The main aim of this session is to start thinking of good answers to the question "Where to from here?"
SUNDAY 14TH OCTOBER
Ecotours, Otago Peninsula
Optional tours on the Otago Peninsula are being offered by several eco-tourism operators at discounted prices for today only (to be booked directly with tourism operator stating you are a Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust Conference delegate):
Elm Wildlife Tours
˝ day tour
Normal price $79, discounted to $64pp
Monarch Wildlife Cruises
1 hour cruises departing Wellers Rock at 10:30am, 12pm, 2pm, 3:15pm, 4:30pm
Normal price $40, discounted to $28pp
Harrington Point Road, Otago Peninsula
Normal price $35, discounted to $30.50pp
Natures Wonders Naturally
Taiaroa Head, Otago Peninsula
Normal price $45, discounted to $36pp
SPORT (Sam's Peninsula Off-road Tours)
Allan's Beach Road
Normal price $50, discounted to $35pp
Royal Albatross Centre
Taiaroa Head, Otago Peninsula
Normal price $22, discounted to $15pp
More Information: To register your interest and get on our mailing list so you can informed when registrations open and when new events are added, please email us or phone us at the Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust office.