Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Coastal watch needed as pressures grow

10 April 2013

Coastal watch needed as pressures grow

Increasing pressure on Waikato’s coastal environment will need to be managed carefully, particularly on the Coromandel Peninsula, Waikato Regional Council’s resource use and environmental monitoring committee has heard today.

Currently the council spends about $4 million a year on managing and monitoring the health of the marine environment in the region.

Reports on coastal estuarine environments to today’s committee meeting said Thames, Whitianga and Whangamata were all expected to grow strongly.

“In the next 30 years the population of Auckland will also have increased by one million and so the holiday population on the Coromandel, which already swells to five times the usual size, will grow accordingly,” a report said.

The Coromandel was often referred to as the playground of the Waikato, Auckland and beyond but “increasing development pressures” highlighted the need for its “management and protection” for a range of “economic, cultural, recreational and environmental reasons”.

The reports said the council has a work programme underway to identify what needs to be done to protect the coastal area in light of these increasing pressures.

Currently, harbour and catchment plans are in place for Whangamata and Wharekawa, and one is under development for Tairua and Pauanui. These plans are designed to reduce sediment and nutrients from getting into the coastal marine area where they can degrade water quality and harm aquatic life. This can have a negative impact on tourism.

The council is also closely monitoring the environmental impacts of land-based activities, such as farming and forestry, in the southern Firth of Thames and Raglan Harbour on the west coast. Tairua-Pauanui monitoring is due to start next financial year. This monitoring will provide the council with information on changes in the marine environment and help determine future work programmes.

The council has been putting in place resource consent conditions to ensure that discharges into the sea from stormwater systems and wastewater treatment plants are of a high standard. Consent conditions covering activities such as farming, forestry and industry are also designed to help protect the marine environment. For example, discharges from outlets such as factories and wastewater plants into the Waihou River, which flows into the Firth of Thames, have been significantly reduced over the last 10 years.

The reports indicated the council should ideally be able to do more management and monitoring work over time and that this could be considered as more funding became available.

“A lot of work is being done in co-operation with other agencies to plan for the way we will manage the coastal environment going into the future,” said coast and marine programme manager Dr Peter Singleton.

“Staff will provide further information to councillors on potential work programmes once the joint planning we’re doing points a clearer way ahead.”

The committee agreed that looking at the question of more funding for future work in this area was warranted.

Committee chair Lois Livingston said after the meeting that the information presented in the reports highlighted significant economic, environmental and recreational issues.

“We all know our coastal spaces are valuable environments in their own right and provide important economic and recreational benefits to our communities, and those of neighbouring regions.

“Given the growth being anticipated in our coastal communities, and the growing populations of cities like Auckland and Hamilton, it will be crucial to ensure we do what we can to protect our coasts.”

The Waikato Regional Council

The council’s area extends from the Bombay Hills in the north to Mt Ruapehu in the south, and from the mouth of the Waikato River to Mokau on the west coast, across to the Coromandel Peninsula on the east.

The region contains nationally important electricity generation facilities, an internationally significant dairy sector and iconic natural features, such as Lake Taupo, which are key tourist attractions.

The council has three key strategic goals:
• The values of land and water resources are sustained across the region
• The people of the region collaborate to achieve a shared vision of the Waikato competing globally, caring locally
• The Waikato Regional Council meets its legislative co-governance requirements by working together in good faith and a spirit of co-operation

Our wide-ranging responsibilities include:
• sustainable management of natural and physical resources, including pest control.
• planning regional growth and transport, and providing bus services.
• civil defence, emergency response, navigation safety, dam safety, flood management, erosion control and road safety.

Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/waikatoregion

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

NZEI Survey Report: Special Needs Students Missing Out

The survey revealed that around 16 percent of students were on schools’ special needs registers, but nearly 90 percent of schools’ special needs coordinators did not believe there was adequate support for students and their learning... More>>

ALSO:

Interim Report: Waitangi Tribunal On Ture Whenua Legislation

Labour on Proposed changes to Maori land rules: “To have Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson dismiss findings as ‘bizarre’ is totally disingenuous and disrespectful. What’s bizarre is Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell stubbornly pushing through this Bill before the Waitangi Tribunal has even completed its report..." More>>

ALSO:

Spy Update: Appointment Of GCSB Acting Director

GCSB Chief Legal Advisor Lisa Fong will become the Acting Director of the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) from 15 February 2016, Minister Responsible for the GCSB Christopher Finlayson announced today. More>>

Protests Close Roads: TPP Signed In Auckland

“TPP was signed by Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Viet Nam.” More>>

ALSO:

Emails Behind 'Diplomatic Immunity' Case: Whitehead Report Released

“As previously indicated the conclusions reached by Mr Whitehead’s investigation are not unexpected but they are very disappointing,” Mr Mccully says. “At the heart of the matter is a single email, along with procedural shortcomings, which gave Malaysian officials the impression it would be acceptable for Mr Rizalman to return to Malaysia." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Treaty/TPP Overlap, And Iowa

The fears about the ISDS provisions in the Trans Pacific Partnership deal are well-founded. The reality is that there is a sharp uptick in the occurrence of ISDS litigation in developed countries, and even the right wing likes of The Economist have been souring on the process for some time. More>>

ALSO:

Christchurch Red Zone Offers: Fresh High Court Proceedings

Grant Cameron, Solicitor for the Quake Outcasts said “the action seeks judicial review of the Crown’s recent decision to make a fresh offer to purchase properties from uninsured property owners in red zones. More>>

ALSO:

PM's Post-Cabinet Press Conference: Waitangi And TPP

Prime Minister John Key on Tuesday said his office has received an invitation for him to visit the Lower Marae on Waitangi Day, but was waiting for a meeting of the Te Tii Marae Trustees. More>>

ALSO:

Flagged: 'Wrong Colour' Bridge Flag To Change

NZ First: Only 13 days after National trumpeted its legally questionable flag on Auckland Harbour Bridge, it is now coming down because it is the wrong colour... “Mr Key’s latest flag fiasco is another waste of taxpayers' money. Given it is coming down, down is exactly the location where it should remain. More>>

ALSO:

School's In: Children Head Back To School

“Across the whole of this year we expect 61,820 five year olds will begin their primary schooling for the first time,” says the Ministry of Education head of sector enablement and support Katrina Casey. More>>

ALSO:

Dog & Lemon: FBI Disagrees With NZ Government Over Police Chases

Multiple studies, quoted by the FBI, show that once suspects realise they're no longer being chased; they tend to slow down to normal driving speeds and therefore become far less of a risk. The FBI report also categorically rejected the argument that abandoning police chases meant ‘giving in’ to offenders. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news