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Strong dunes thanks to Coast Care volunteers


Strong dunes thanks to Coast Care volunteers

For immediate release: Thursday 26 October 2006

Bay of Plenty Coast Care volunteers have been out in force over past months, planting 60,000 native plants on the region’s sand dunes.

Now in its 12th year, the nationally-acclaimed programme continues to thrive, says coordinator Greg Jenks. About 30 groups are now actively supporting the project. So far, they have planted a total of more than 300,000 native dune plants between Waihi Beach and the East Cape.

Mr Jenks wants to thank Coast Care’s volunteer crew. “They’re doing a fantastic job. Their interest hasn’t flagged, which is great,” Mr Jenks says. “They can see the results of their work and they know that what they’re doing is making a difference.”

Coast Care Bay of Plenty is a partnership between Environment Bay of Plenty, the coastal district councils, and the Department of Conservation. Coast Care staff work with local community members, who take active roles in managing their own beaches.

Natural dunes are the best way of buffering the land from the sea, Mr Jenks says. When sand is exposed, it is rapidly carried away by wind. However, dunes swathed in native dune plants are stronger and can protect the coastline better. They also help make the region’s coastline less vulnerable to the impacts of climate change in future, which may include storms and flooding.

Climate change is one of the issues being highlighted at a Ministry for the Environment forum in Tauranga on Friday 3 November. The “Talk Environment” public meeting will run from 7.45am until 9.45am at Mills Reef Winery, 143 Moffat Road, Bethlehem, Tauranga.


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