Funding for restoration boost for Trust
The Trust has received nearly $4.2m from the Ministry for the Environment’s Freshwater Improvement Fund to support restoration efforts through pest control, weed control, water quality monitoring and improvement, and engagement.
At the halfway point of the 40-year vision, Chair of the Board of Management for the Trust, Simon Rutherford is looking forward to seeing what the next ten years of whanaungatanga/collaboration can bring.
“As an urban waterway there are lots of challenges facing Pūharakekenui including sediment, erosion, land-use effects, decreasing water quality, pollution – but there are also many opportunities.
“Opportunity to build on what’s already been achieved and continue to fence, plant, monitor, record, share, grow, and learn alongside the community,” he said.
One area of focus for the funding is the Styx Mill Conservation Reserve, which the Trust considers ‘ground-zero’ for pest plant willow in the catchment. Eradication of willow in the conservation area is planned at a rate of 5ha per year for the next five years.
“When we think about eradicating willow from 25ha of land it seems like a daunting challenge for a group of volunteers. By breaking it down into achievable year-on-year goals the task becomes more manageable and easier to measure and celebrate our successes.
“That’s really the approach we’ve taken for all our projects across the catchment,” Rutherford said.