Funding for hill country erosion

Landowners in North Canterbury can apply for funding to help combat hillside erosion through the Soil Conservation and Revegatation Programme (SCAR).

The programme has been operating since 2019 and in 2023, we received additional funding from the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Hill Country Erosion Fund to continue until 2027.

Pole planting to combat farm erosion

Pole planting to combat farm erosion

The programme aims to:

  • Retain productive soils 
  • Reduce sediment washed into waterways through erosion 
  • Provide benefits to water quality, biodiversity and mahinga kai 
  • Build on-farm resilience to climatic effects. 

Farmers work alongside our land management advisors identify areas of their properties that are erosion-prone. They then work together to find the best way to mitigate this erosion. 

The programme is co-funded by Environment Canterbury and the MPI Hill Country Erosion Fund, and the goal is to reach as many eligible landowners as possible. 

Funding is targeted at: 

  • Space planting of poplars 
  • Fencing off areas from stock 
  • Catchment-scale mapping and on-farm Land Use Capability (LUC) maps to support farm environment planning 
  • Building staff and catchment group capacity to consult on soil conservation and farm plans 
  • Expanding our existing nursery (Baynons Nursery) to provide greater numbers of poplars and willows across the region. 

The programme has been operating since 2019.

Support available

Our land management advisors will work with farmers on: 

  • Funding applications associated with the programme 
  • Prioritising land for treatment 
  • Developing erosion control plans for their property. 

Funding is currently available for landowners in the Kaikōura and Hurunui districts. It will be made available in Waimakariri soon.  

Funding available to identify and treat erosion-prone land

Activity Costs through SCAR assistance Additional information Farm Environment Plan (FEP)

Poplar poles

+ GST and delivery

Poles for $4.00/pole.
(Normal retail – $12.00/pole)

Free protective sleeves

(Normal retail price $9.50)

Poles are 3 metres long

Recommended but not required
Land Use Capability
(LUC) Mapping

Free mapping

To assess the physical characteristics of the land, to help landowners understand the capability of the land to make sustainable land-use decisions

Not required


Reversion / Retirement fencing $10/metre

Payment on inspection.

Typically 8-wire post with droppers/battens. Stock must be permanently excluded

 

A current
FEP is required
Reversion / Retirement land Provide up to $1500/hectare 
Partial payment on invoice, remaining on inspection
Note: A Good Faith Agreement will be required to be signed for projects, depending on the value. 

 

Ongoing measurement and commitment

Our land management advisors will need reasonable access to land to approve funding applications. 

It will be landowners’ responsibility to maintain funded projects: 

  • Pole plantings will need to be maintained for a minimum of 10 years 
  • Fencing, reversion and retirement projects will need to be maintained on a long-term basis. 

Staff will then liaise with farmers to measure survival rates. 

Project data (fencing, planting, costs, work-in-kind, timeframes, contractors) will be entered into a geographic information system (GIS). 

Getting started

For advice and help getting started, or for mapping advice, contact:

For any general enquiries, email SoilCon@ecan.govt.nz.

Additional information

Farm Forestry New Zealand's website provides general information on poplar poles and guidance on how to plant poles successfully.

While Landcare Research’s LRIS portal (Land Resource Information Systems) provides national information on soils.

Useful fact sheets and brochures

Baynons Nursery

We manage Baynons Nursery, which supplies poles funded through the Soil Conservation and Revegetation Programme.