New Zealand sustainable development programme of action
The New Zealand government launched its
Sustainable Development Programme
of Action in January 2003 to ensure that sustainable development
concepts underpin all government activity, and that government decisions
ensure the well-being of current and future generations.
The programme of action establishes a set of operating principles
for policy development that require government to take account of the
economic, social, environmental, and cultural consequences of its decisions
- considering the long-term implications of decisions
- seeking innovative solutions that are mutually reinforcing, rather
than accepting that gain in one area will necessarily be achieved
at the expense of another
- using the best information available to support decision making
- addressing risks and uncertainty when making choices and taking
a precautionary approach when making decisions that may cause serious
or irreversible damage
- working in partnership with local government and other sectors and
encouraging transparent and participatory processes
- considering the implications of decisions from a global as well
as a New Zealand perspective
- decoupling economic growth from pressures on the environment
- respecting environmental limits, protecting ecosystems and promoting
the integrated management of land, water and living resources
- working in partnership with appropriate Māori authorities to empower
Māori in development decisions that affect them
- respecting human rights, the rule of law and cultural diversity.
The programme of action focuses on the practical application of the
sustainable development approach to certain key issues:
Sustainable development must be at the core of all government policy.
This programme of action is the third document issued by this government
in order to focus and re-orient government policy making and processes.
The other documents are Growing
an Innovative New Zealand (the Growth and Innovation Framework) and Key
Government Goals to Guide the Public Sector in Achieving Sustainable
Development (Annex 1, page 30). All three documents are consistent
and mutually reinforcing in their approach.
For more information on the programme of action see the Minister’s
release and speech
to the Auckland Mayoral Forum on the Beehive website.
Last updated: 12 March 2008