Horizons, PNC Councils join forces for riverside clean-up
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Councils join forces for riverside clean-up
Council staff and community volunteers will be out in force this Friday as they take part in a river clean-up within the city reaches of the river.
Staff and councillors from Horizons Regional Council and Palmerston North City Council will be joining forces to scour the riverside walkway from Te Matai Rd to Dittmer drive removing rubbish along the way.
Council chief executives Paddy Clifford and Michael McCartney said both councils put in a lot of effort into managing the river and its banks and the clean-up was an extension of that.
"We take a lot of pride in the work we do in and around the river, from flood protection and water management right through to providing recreational opportunities like the walk and cycle way,” said Mr Clifford.
"The clean-up is a chance for us to show our pride in the work we do and we're pleased to have members of the local environment network join in."
Both councils are signatories to the Manawatu River Leaders' Accord, which has a goal of restoring the pride the mana of the river. The Accord sets out an action plan of over 130 actions that signatories are taking to improve the river.
"We've been pretty busy over the past two years undertaking fencing and planting projects, reducing sediment in the river and trying to improve the habitat for our native fish and wildlife,” said Mr McCartney.
"Friday is about taking some timeout
with our staff to do something really simple that is about
community pride in an area that is well used and enjoyed by
Horizons staff have also been clearing the river bed of debris with the dry weather conditions providing an excellent opportunity to remove potentially hazardous material such as steel, which ended up lying on the river bed having been dumped or washed away during high flows.
"We've removed some old tyres, road signs and rubbish from the river bed this week. It’s a stark reminder of the hazards that are often unseen in the river and while we do our best to remove these when we can, swimmers and boaties need to take caution at all times,” said Mr McCartney.
The 2nd Engineer Regiment 2nd Emergency Response Troop from Linton Military Camp also chipped in to clear some steel protrusions left over from a previous bridge, which have been discovered due to the low river flow, using specialist equipment.
Warrant Officer Class Two Brent Ruruku, who is in charge of the 2nd Emergency Response Troop said it was a great opportunity for the Army to get involved in the community.
"We really want to see the river safer and cleaner for all to use," he said.