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Flood protection ‘investment’ worthwhile

Greater Wellington is the promotional name of the Wellington Regional Council

News release

18 February 2004

Flood protection ‘investment’ worthwhile

Greater Wellington Regional Council’s investment in flood protection defences has really paid off during the recent storm in the lower parts of the North Island.

According to Greater Wellington Landcare Committee chairperson Cr Chris Laidlaw, flood defences across the region have up held well, which show that the investment in flood defences over the years is definitely worthwhile.

“The damage would have been far worse without these stopbanks,” he said. “While the damage was reasonably serious in some places, a lot more of lower Hutt, Otaki and Waikanae would have been under water were it not for the work that has been done in recent years, and the human cost would have been far higher.”

In the Wairarapa the Lower Ruamahanga River recorded its biggest flows since records began 50 years ago and yet stopbanks also coped well in these exceptional circumstances.

Both the Wainuiomata and Mangaroa rivers had the highest flows since records began in 1977. The Waiwhetu Stream also had a record high flow, although records only go back to 1978, missing the severe storm in 1976. Rainfall in the Waiwhetu area during the recent storm however, has a return period of about 50 years.


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