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About - Cook Islands National Environment Service
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Kia Orana and Welcome

This website was developed by the National Environment Service to make available information about Cook Islands environment programmes, services and activities. The Cook Islands National Environment Service is the central government agency charged with protecting, managing and conserving the environment of the Cook Islands, on behalf of and for the benefit of present and future Cook Islanders. We want to ensure that we provide you with the most current information available.

Our National Vision

``To enjoy the highest quality of life consistent with the aspirations of our people, and in harmony with our culture and environment.``
``Te oraanga tu rangatira kia tau ki te anoano o te iti tangata, e kia tau ki ta tatou peu Maori e te aotini taporoporoia o te basileia.``

The Cook Islands National Environment Service recognises the importance of the environment to the people of the Cook Islands. Our cultural identity is deeply rooted in our environment and it is a part of our heritage and legacy that must be passed on to future generations of Cook Islanders. As caretakers of the land, we must take pride in its natural beauty and it is critical to ensure that we work now to protect and conserve this precious resource. With careful nurturing, conservation and sound management we can achieve sustainable development while protecting our environmental, social and cultural heritage.

This website gives you access to the Cook Islands National Environment Service structure and activities, International Projects, National Protected Areas, Cook Islands Biodiversity Database on plants and animals, provides you with local environmental issues coverage and conservation activities, and connects you to non-government environment organisations in the Cook Islands and abroad.

We welcome you to not only take the time to see what is available on this site, to use also this opportunity to let us know how we can serve you better.  We look forward to continuing to provide you the best customer service possible, as we progress in our quest to conserve the Cook Islands’ precious environment.

For any enquiries, suggestions or recommendations, please email us at  [email protected] or our contact numbers are at the bottom of each page for easy reference.

The National Environment Service (NES) is an agency of the Crown as defined by the Environment Act 2003.  The Government is committed to improving the Service’s environmental management strategies, which provides a framework for sustainable development in the Cook Islands.  The Environment Act 2003 will guide these strategies and ensure that regional and international obligations are met.

The national goal of the Service is geared towards building a more sustainable future in our environment. Depletion of our environment and natural resources provides a very bleak future for our children. Therefore, increasing environmental concerns (global warming and sea level rise, erosion and sand mining, biodiversity and habitat loss, coral bleaching and coral death, pollution, waste management and recycling) require urgent responses from government and the community for sustainable development as an overall national goal to be realised.

The NES works with the Aronga Mana (traditional tribal councils), the Island Councils, Non-governmental organisations, Women, Youth and the children of the Cook Islands to ensure an outstanding legacy for the future.

The National Sustainable Development Plan (NSDP)

The National Sustainable Development Plan (NSDP) (2007-2010) was developed as a pathway for sustainable development in the Cook Islands.  The Cook Islands government recognises the significance of the environment and its inter-relatedness to other areas of importance and therefore developed Strategic Outcome 5 and Strategic Goal 4 that incorporates environmental consideration into the National Goals.

Strategic Outcome 5. Enhanced Cultural and Environmental Values

  • We envisage that by 2020, we will have a firm respect for our natural environment through increased conservation efforts that are consistent with the principles of sustainable development ensuring the protection of our natural environment for future generations.

Strategic Goal 4

  • Sustainable use and management of our environment and natural resources.

(Te Kaveinga Nui, 2007).

Strategic Goal 4, with its envisioned outcome, comprises of positive developments in the areas of marine resources, agriculture, land resources use and management, environment, water and waste for future sustainable development and conservation in all spheres.

The National Environment Service is a key player in reaching the Strategic Goal 4 of the NSDP.  Through its role as an environmental advisory and education institution.

Each division of the Environment Service serves to achieve specific goals allocated for each division.

The Advisory & Compliance Division is concerned with the provision of regulatory, technical, advisory and monitoring requirements for environmental sustainability.

The Island Futures Division is concerned with promoting integrated approaches to environmental management through appropriate policy development, planning responses and education and awareness.

The Administration Division manages the Service through effective and efficient administration of management systems.