Ted Talks – February 2022
Hear from Kaikōura Water Zone Committee chair Ted Howard, as the committee welcomes the new year by supporting three local projects working towards freshwater, biodiversity, and community engagement outcomes.
Hello and happy 2022 everybody! For many of us summer is busy and our breaks come later in the year, and for many others there is a return to work after a summer break, and we all still have COVID-19 adding to the complexities present.
A lot has been happening in Kaikōura as usual, including our first water zone committee meeting of the year, which got underway late last month.
It saw us agree to support three different projects in the zone.
As part of their Long-Term Plan 2021-2031, Environment Canterbury established the Zone Committee Action Plan Budget (formerly referred to as the Community Engagement Fund) and committed $50,000 per zone for the 2021-22 financial year. The confirmed purpose of the budget is to support Zone Committees to focus on implementing their action plans and leverage other funding opportunities to achieve their Canterbury Water Management Strategy (CWMS) priorities.
Hāpuku Catchment Collective
The first project we have agreed to support is the Hāpuku Catchment Collective. It will receive $25,000 this year. The project is likely to be a multi-year project so the committee will look at future opportunities to continue supporting landowners putting in the mahi at this special coastal wetland and escarpment area.
This year’s funding will support landowners and the Hāpuku community to enhance freshwater in the catchment using a catchment-based approach. Vine and willow control, planting and predator control are all included in the project plan.
The catchment is home to the Hāpuku Scarp wetland, which is the largest remaining freshwater palustrine (partly salty) wetland (fed by rain, groundwater or surface water) in the area and hosts some of the country’s southernmost tawa and black maire trees.
This project aligns with the committees 2021-2024 Action Plan objective to facilitate action to enhance biodiversity and improve amenity and recreation outcomes in the area.
Puhi Peaks Shearwater Stream Trapline Project
We are also supporting the Puhi Peaks Shearwater Stream Trapline Project, which will receive a $15,000 contribution towards the protection of one of the last two natural breeding colonies of our taonga tītī (Hutton’s shearwaters) as well as protecting other native biodiversity in the area.
Two traplines for predator control in the Puhi Peaks Nature Reserve will be established, with traps placed along the bush line. The Hutton’s Shearwater only breed here in Kaikōura and nowhere else in the world. It is also home to Hectors tree daisy (Olearia Hectorii) – a native tree with only six populations left in the country.
This project aligns with the committees 2021-2024 Action Plan priority to facilitate action to enhance biodiversity by coordinating and supporting “on the ground” actions such as trapping and planting. It also identifies new “ki uta ki tai” opportunities that support existing efforts – such as mahi/work done previously by Puhi Peaks and is located in the Waiau Toa catchment.
Waikōau/Lower Lyell Street and beach clean-up
The third and final project we agreed to support was the Waikōau/Lower Lyell Street and beach clean-up. This event continues to be a great engagement opportunity for local schools and the wider community, so will be receiving $200 to support continued community action to improve the health of the waterway.
Keep an eye out for the event this year to see how you can get involved.
This project aligns with the committees 2021-2024 Action Plan priority to support an annual event “Lyell Creek Clean Up” and promote community engagement; and working with our community to improve amenity sites in the Waikōau.
There are other exciting projects bubbling away in the background which we also hope to support in the future when they are ready for it.
For now though, keep up the great work everyone, keep making that effort each day to be as responsible as reasonably possible in choices that help make our waterways as free of weeds, pests and waste as possible (every little bit really does help) and I look forward to updating you with other committee news and community projects supported by us.
Meeting Regional Targets
Each of Canterbury’s ten water zone committees has an action plan which outlines how they will work with the community to deliver their aspirations for freshwater as outlined in the Canterbury Water Management Strategy (CWMS).
This work supports the committee’s action plan.
The CWMS puts the future of our water resource in the hands of the community. Zone committees work collaboratively to develop recommendations for councils and other organisations to deliver shared goals and targets.