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Rewards for environmental work

Rewards for environmental work

The Bay of Plenty’s environmental heroes have been rewarded by Environment Bay of Plenty for their “fantastic work” over the past year.

At a ceremony today, chairman John Cronin presented special awards to 10 individuals, groups, businesses and educational organisations from all over the region.

Environment Bay of Plenty’s Environmental Awards are an annual event that celebrates the work being done to improve and protect the environment in the Bay of Plenty. “They recognise the outstanding contributions made by people and groups to the region’s environment,” Mr Cronin says.

The award winners are: Individuals Winner: Hilary Gill, Rotorua Hilary Gill of Rotorua has set an example to other landowners with her work on her small rural property. This has included removing weeds and rubbish from retired areas and replanting stream margins with native shrubs. Now retired, Mrs Gill completed much of the work herself – and the results are a testament to her commitment to the environment. Highly commended: Len Purser, Tanners Point Len’s great work for the environment includes possum control and 20 years of rabbit control. Len also manufactured and modified rat bait stations for a major community pest control project at Tanners Point. Highly commended: Shane and June Birchall, Rotomahana Shane and June have donated about two hectares of land for building a wetland to help improve water quality in Lake Okaro. They have generously spent time and money improving the environmental performance of their property.

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Community Winner: Nukuhou Saltmarsh Care group The care group works in a collaborative way with several agencies to investigate and protect rare wetland bird species in the Nukuhou saltmarsh. Their work includes predator and weed control and re-planting programmes.

Educational Organisations Winner: Tauranga Environment Centre The centre was congratulated for its outstanding work in developing environmental educational programmes, including a regular newsletter, a reference library, free professional advice and educational programmes, such as the Sustainable Business Programme. Highly commended: Ohope Beach School The primary school has helped to restore a stream bank damaged by flooding and has created a native plant area, among other initiatives. Every child has had an opportunity to plant at least one plant, which they then look after. The school also does recycling, worm farming, and planting of sand dunes. Highly commended: Wingspan Birds of Prey, Rotorua Rotorua’s Wingspan centre breeds, houses and displays New Zealand raptors, including falcons. It gives people the chance to get close to these birds and runs informative talks about them.

Consent Compliance Environment Bay of Plenty staff recommended the following resource consent holders for awards for excellence in carrying out the conditions of their resource consents.

Winner: Rerewhakaaitu Dairy Farmers Dairy farmers at Rerewhakaaitu have a dairy consent for the whole area. They have achieved 100% compliance for the past two years, which no other area of the region has done. Their good work also helps protect the lake. Highly commended: HEB Contractors, Western Bay of Plenty District Council and MWH New Zealand Ltd The resource consent was for the removal of a hairpin bend and straightening of a section of Pyes Pa Rd, which connects Rotorua and Tauranga. They performed the task to an excellent standard without breaching their resource consent in any way. Highly commended: Ribbonwood Yarding Systems Ribbonwood Yarding Systems’ consent was for clearing debris from a stream after harvesting in Rotoehu Forest. It was performed to an excellent standard.

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