Waikawa Beach residents will enjoy a cleaner river after the Government announced last month funding of $170,000 to improve the health of the Waikawa catchment.
Associate Environment Minister Eugenie Sage said the grant from the Community Environment Fund would contribute to the Waikawa Stream Community Catchment Project. Horizons Regional Council is contributing another $45,000, Landcare Trust $30,000 and land-holders $15,000, making a total of $260,000.
The project will bring together land-holders, iwi and hapū, farming groups, the Waikawa Beach Ratepayers Association and others in the wider community. The Waikawa catchment stretches from the Tararua Ranges to the coast at Waikawa.
It will establish three demonstration sites on Waikawa Stream by 2021 to highlight current good management practices for stock exclusion, erosion control and riparian planting. At the same time, the Landcare Trust will work with several educational organisations to monitor the stream and work with iwi and hapū to develop a strategy and action plan.
Project activities include: planting at least 20,000 plants, stream monitoring, riparian fencing, excluding stock from streams, erosion control, public meetings and community participation.
Land use on hill country in the catchment includes sheep and beef farming and forestry, while lowland flats are used for horticulture and dairy farming, and grazing occurs on sandy country closer to the coast.
The Community Environment Fund is administered by the Ministry for the Environment and supports projects that strengthen environmental partnerships, raise environmental awareness and encourage participation in environmental initiatives in the community.