Agricultural intensification, ownership, and landscape change in the Mackenzie Basin
This article investigates the role of shifting land ownership in landscape change in New Zealand’s Mackenzie Basin. It was hypothesised that ownership patterns influence landscape transformation; and changes in ownership lead to landscape changes. Satellite imagery was used to trace recent landscape changes quantifying a change from brown extensive pastoralism to green irrigated pasture. It was concluded that the change in land ownership following land reform allowed for about half of this agricultural intensification since 2003. Aggregating intensification on new freehold land with that on current pastoral lease changes the story; Crown decisions about disposition or intensification of Crown land account for two-thirds of intensification since 2003. Hence, if current trends in the Mackenzie are to change, the Crown must examine its decision patterns. Change in some form seems likely. The results presented speak to who has the power to make change. The choice and the power reside somewhere in the space between the Commissioner of Crown Lands and the Minister of Land Information.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Rights granted to the New Zealand Grassland Association through this agreement are non-exclusive. You are free to publish the work(s) elsewhere and no ownership is assumed by the NZGA when storing or curating an electronic version of the work(s). The author(s) will receive no monetary return from the Association for the use of material contained in the manuscript. If I am one of several co-authors, I hereby confirm that I am authorized by my co-authors to grant this Licence as their agent on their behalf. For the avoidance of doubt, this includes the rights to supply the article in electronic and online forms and systems.