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Public urged to make submission to protect Ngaruroro River

Public urged to make submission to protect Hawke’s Bay’s Ngaruroro River


31 July 2017

New Zealanders are being urged to make submissions to ensure Hawkes Bay’s Ngaruroro and Clive Rivers are protected by a rarely-issued Water Conservation Order.

Water Conservation Orders give rivers and lakes the equivalent of National Park-type protection. If the application is successful, it will be only the 16th of New Zealand’s many waterways to be protected by a WCO.

The Ngaruroro River below whanawhana.

The Ngaruroro River rises high in the remote Kaimanawa Ranges, emerging onto the Heretaunga plains at Whanawhana before flowing through Hawke’s Bay into the Pacific Ocean at Clive, just south of Napier.

The application for the Water Conservation Order has been jointly lodged by a group of organisations, including Fish & Game, Ngati Hori ki Kohupatiki, Forest & Bird, Whitewater NZ and Jet Boating NZ.

A Special Tribunal appointed by the Environment Minister is now considering the application and calling for the public to give its views – and Fish & Game New Zealand’s Chief Executive Bryce Johnson is encouraging all New Zealanders to have their say.

“A Water Conservation Order will ensure the Ngaruroro and Clive Rivers’ many truly outstanding values will be protected for the sake of the environment and the public’s enjoyment now and generations to come,” says Mr Johnson.

If approved as the applicants are asking, the WCO r would cover the entire Ngaruroro River, including its tributaries and connected groundwater, and seven kilometres of the Clive River and its connected groundwater.

The five person Special Tribunal says that public submissions must be lodged by 4pm Friday 24 August.

The Tribunal will then hold a hearing and write a report, including a recommendation on whether to grant the Water Conservation Order.

The final decision will be made by the Environment Minister.

Anyone wanting to make a submission can do so on the Environmental Protection Authority website www.epa.govt.nz/ngaruroro

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