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Major financial boost in efforts to improve Lake Tūtira

A $1.5 million Government grant has kicked started a four-year project that will accelerate existing efforts to improve the mauri of Lake Tūtira.

Project Te Waiū o Tūtira (the milk of Tūtira) aims to improve water quality and ecological habitat in Lakes Waikōpiro and Tūtira, forming part of a nationwide effort to clean up New Zealand’s rivers and lakes.

The project has been formed out of a partnership between Maungaharuru-Tangitū Trust, Hawke’s Bay Regional Council, Ministry for the Environment and Tūtira local residents. The total cost of the project is set to be $3.5 million over five years. Outcomes of the Te Waiū o Tūtira project include a community-driven Integrated Catchment Management Plan for Tūtira, cultural monitoring programme, ongoing riparian planting, sediment traps, and Farm Environmental Management Plans, subsidy schemes and land management support for local landowners.

The government grant comes from the Ministry for the Environment’s Freshwater Improvement Fund and with this additional support, it is full steam ahead for the Te Waiū o Tūtira project. The Freshwater Improvement Fund has committed $100 million over the next 10 years to improve the management of New Zealand’s lakes, rivers, streams, groundwater and wetlands nationwide.

Hawke’s Bay Regional Council Chairman Rex Graham says confirmation of Government funding for this project is great news. “Lake Tūtira needs our help and this funding allows us to take practical steps to improve the mauri of the lake,” says Mr Graham.

Maungaharuru-Tangitū Trust General Manager Shayne Walker also commented on the news saying, “for far too long the mauri of our taonga has been ignored. This commitment from all is a sign that it is finally accepted the environment sustains us, not the other way around.”

9 April 2018

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