Sunday, May 26, 2024

Funding flows for freshwater clean-up projects

The clean-up of a degraded lake in Marlborough and restoration of an estuary system in Gisborne are among a suite of projects that will receive $12 million of Jobs for Nature funding, Environment Minister David Parker announced today.

Across the seven projects, up to 243 jobs (FTEs) are expected to be created over the next five years, the Minister said.

Together with council and other contributions, the projects will see more than $26 million invested in improving New Zealand’s freshwater, he said.

“Each project is taking us closer to meeting the objectives of the Essential Freshwater package, while creating training and employment opportunities.”

“It’s about improving water quality now, so that the next generation can enjoy healthy freshwater for years to come.

“We are supporting projects that are taking a catchment wide approach to remediation, like the Hokianga Harbour Care project. We are helping fence off waterways to exclude stock, plant up riparian margins and restore wetlands.

“We are upskilling people. Ngāti Koata Trust’s project to restore Lake Moawhitu is offering employment and ecological training for local rangatahi and others in the community,” Mr Parker said.

The funding comes from the Freshwater Improvement Fund, which aims to create significant environmental benefits and boost training and employment to help accelerate the recovery from the impact of COVID-19.

Projects receiving funding:


  • Hokianga Harbour Care Incorporated will receive $2,000,000 over four years for their Hokianga Catchment Restoration Project. The Hokianga Catchment Restoration Project will undertake on-the-ground activities to improve the health of the freshwater catchments within the Hokianga district, improving the health of the Hokianga Harbour and the community that relies on it. The project is expected to create 24.5 FTEs.


  • Te Puāwaitanga o Ngāti Hinerangi Iwi Trust (TPNHT) will receive $1,000,000 over four and half years for their Waihaumanu Project. This project aims to restore the Mangapiko stream, the awa tūturu and is expected to create 12.4 FTE.
  • Pūniu River Care Incorporated will receive $4,000,000 over four and half years for their Ngā kaitiaki o te awa o Pūniu – Stage 2 project. It will fence and plant alongside tributaries which flow into the Pūniu river. It is expected to create 110 FTE.


  • Gisborne District Council will receive $2,250,000 over four and half years for their Restoring the Mauri and Ora of the Tūranganui Estuary System project. Actions include riparian planting, wetland restoration, the removal of barriers to fish passage, improving connectivity, enhancing fish spawning, and stormwater improvements in the urban and urban fringe stream network that drains into the estuary waterway system. It is expected to create 43.4 FTE.


  • Greater Wellington will receive $2,000,000 over four and half years for their Improving Fish Passage in the Wellington Region project. This project aims to improve fish passage in Wellington’s waterways, through a Fish Passage Regional Action Plan, assessing, remediating and monitoring fish passages. It is expected to create 33.2 FTE.


  • Ngāti Koata Trust will receive $759,000 over four and half years for their Securing the mauri of Moawhitu project. The project aims to restore Moawhitu through a multi-partner initiative. The project partners will undertake targeted restoration of Lake Moawhitu water quality, re-introduction of woody habitat for taonga species, and revegetation of indigenous plants. It is expected to create 8.4 FTE.


  • Selwyn District Council will receive $796,980 over four and half years for their Te Waihora Freshwater Wetland Restoration – Tārerekautuku wetland project. This project will support the ecological restoration of the significant Tārerekautuku / Yarrs Lagoon wetland, as part of the wider Te Waihora Freshwater Wetland Restoration project. It is expected to create 10.8 FTE. 

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