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

 


Which rivers and lakes are important to you and why?

Which rivers and lakes are important to you and why?


People with an interest in the quality and quantity of the water in the Gisborne district rivers, streams, lakes and wetlands have till the end of the week to let Gisborne District Council know what’s important to them. Council will be drafting a plan for freshwater later this year. This follows three years of working with the Freshwater Advisory Group that includes representatives from agriculture, horticulture, iwi, environment, and recreation interests.

We can’t plan for our freshwater resource without having a really good understanding of what’s happening with it, what’s affecting it and what can be done about it, says policy manager Jeff Hextall. “There have been more than 25 technical reports produced to inform this process. This research work will continue.”

“We are still in the information collection phase of developing the freshwater plan. At the moment we are particularly interested in understanding what’s important to the people in the district and especially which waterways they value and the reasons for this. This will help us to focus priorities.”

Late last year a number of freshwater workshops were held throughout the district. Over 150 people attended these meetings. “We gathered a lot of feedback from these meetings but it would be really helpful to have more written submissions.”

A discussion document, a summary of that document and a submission form are available on Council’s website or can be picked up from Customer Service in Fitzherbert Street or Te Puia Springs.

“On the submission form we ask if people think there are any waterways that need improving and if there are any waterways that they think need protecting. We understand that water is important to different people for different reasons. Some people value it for fishing and recreation others for irrigation and watering stock. In the recent water crisis more people came to value the availability of water in the Mangapoike dams as a source of drinking and household water and the means to keep their gardens thriving”, added Mr Hextall.

There has been an increased interest in the quality of water in many of Gisborne’s popular recreational hotspots since water quality data was published on Council’s website late last year.
We have been testing water quality in over 30 coastal and freshwater spots around the district for many years now, says Sarwan Kumar, regulatory services manager. “The results of the water testing have not changed significantly recently. Signs have been erected for some time in areas where the water consistently does not meet health guidelines warning people of this fact.”

“Now that we have the ability to display the considerable amount of data we collect in an easy to read format online, the public have the opportunity to be better informed. It is important to remember that while our water quality is far from perfect, we are not aware of any confirmed cases of people getting ill after swimming in our waterways.”

“The reality is that many of our fresh waterways are affected after heavy rain. Bacteria levels increase as the rivers become highly sedimented and contaminated from the agricultural run-off upstream,” added Mr Kumar.

If the community wants to have better quality freshwater then this is an important opportunity to provide that feedback, says Mr Hextall.

“There are definitely challenges due to the physical characteristics of the region, but there are opportunities for improving water quality. We will look at what the costs and implications of these opportunities might be as we move through the process of developing the freshwater plan.”

There will be further opportunities for the public to have their say on what goes in the freshwater plan once it is drafted. Responses to water quality and related issues are also likely to feature heavily in Council consultation this year as it looks again at its long term planning.

Submissions close at 5pm of Friday 24 January 2014. http://www.gdc.govt.nz/freshwater-plan-development/

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

More Evidence - Scoop Press Conference Recordings:
PM's Post-Cab Presser 8/8/11
"at that point [Tucker] told me he'd release it ..."

Hager Revelations: Inquiry Into NZSIS Release Of Goff Docs

The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security (IGIS), Cheryl Gwyn, announced she would be instituting an inquiry concerning allegations that the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service (NZSIS) might have released official information to Mr Cameron Slater, regarding briefings provided to the then Leader of the Opposition, for political purposes...

“I am satisfied there is a sufficient public interest justifying the commencement of an own-motion inquiry into the substance of the issues raised with my Office,” said Ms Gwyn. More>>

Goff: Director’s Letter Contradicts Key’s Claims

At yesterday’s media standup, when asked on the topic John Key said ‘I wasn’t told’...
“In a letter dated November 2011 former SIS director Warren Tucker states three times that ‘in accordance with the usual practice of keeping the minister informed’ the Prime Minister had been told. More>>


 

Parliament Today:

Schools, PPTA Sign Up: Primary Teachers And Principals Vote Down Govt Plan

Teachers and principals have voted overwhelmingly against the Government’s controversial “Investing in Educational Success” policy, including proposed highly-paid principal and teacher roles. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Usual Round Of Mud Slinging And Name-Calling

This week gave an interesting example of how hard it is to untangle the reality from the slanging matches. The issue that emerged early this week could hardly be more important. Does the government intend to cut spending in health, education and on the environment if re-elected, or not? More>>

Earlier:

Electionresults.co.nz: National and NZ First Rise in Roy Morgan Poll

National has bounced back in the latest Roy Morgan Poll but the big winner has been New Zealand First who rise to their highest level of support since September 2013. More>>

ALSO:

Fish Pun Warning: By Hoki! It’s Labour’s Fisheries Policy

A Labour Government will protect the iconic Kiwi tradition of fishing by improving access to the coast, protecting the rights of recreational fishers and reviewing snapper restrictions, Labour’s Fisheries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. More>>

ALSO:

It's Official: Governor General Gives Direction To Conduct Election

The Governor General has signed the writ directing the Electoral Commission to conduct the General Election on 20 September 2014. This is the formal authority to run the 2014 election, and enables candidate nominations to open tomorrow Thursday 21 August 2014. More>>

Gordon Campbell: No More Mr Nice Guy

When future historians seek to identify the exact moment when the prime ministerial career of John Key hit the downward slope, they may well point to Key’s interview yesterday with Guyon Espiner on RNZ’s Morning Report. More>>

ALSO:

Dirty (Politics) Weekend: Collins’ Admission Reason For Key To Act

"Despite claiming that the evidence about her in Nicky Hager's book was ‘false’ Judith Collins has now been forced to admit that she did send information about a Ministerial Services staff member to Cameron Slater for him to use in a baseless smear campaign. More>>

ALSO:

Potential Disasters: Underground Coal Fire On Denniston Plateau

Forest & Bird says one or more coal fires have broken out beneath the Denniston Plateau, and that the Department of Conservation (DOC) must stop Bathurst Resources’ preparatory mining work going on there until the fire or fires are extinguished. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news