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How to manage mangroves that are moving in

25 February 2005

How to manage mangroves that are moving in

The Auckland Regional Council has allocated $10,000 towards managing the expansion of mangroves.

Environmental Management Chair, Dianne Glenn says the $10,000 will be used to review the current management regime with the view toward establishing a more flexible approach to managing mangrove expansion.

“Mangroves have a vital role in coastal ecosystems as they protect shorelines from erosion, enhance water quality and provide a home for many land and water species,” says Cr.Glenn. “In some estuaries in Auckland however, mangrove forests have spread to new areas and are blocking access to beaches, recreational areas and changing habitats for other species.”

“It is not appropriate to encourage mangrove removal but there is scope for changing the Regional Plan: Coastal provisions to provide greater clarity regarding circumstances where removals may be appropriate or where public notification may not be required,” says Cr. Glenn.

“The mangrove issue has polarised some communities. At one end of the spectrum are those wanting to address amenity and ecological issues by removing or managing mangroves. At the other end are those concerned over the risks to the environment from large scale removal,” she added.

“This review will supplement current mangrove management activities such as developing coastal compartment plans for Waiuku estuary and Pahurehure inlet in partnership with Franklin and Papakura District Councils,” says Cr. Glenn.

In developing the plans the ARC will work with local communities to find integrated solutions to coastal issues. This will include identifying the uses and values of an estuary and then determining areas where mangroves should be protected or where their spread could be managed.

ARC’s mangrove management project is also supported by other activities such as education, regulation, research, monitoring and advocacy.

Locations where mangroves have been raised as a particular issue in the Auckland region include: Manukau Harbour areas of Pahurehure Inlet (Papakura), Mangere Bridge and Waiuku Estuary; areas of the Waiwera estuary, and areas of the Kaipara harbour.

ENDS

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