19 projects will clean up and protect waterways

A package of 19 projects will help clean up and protect waterways and create local jobs.

The projects have been awarded $36 million of Government funding. Together with council and other contributions, the package will see more than $70 million invested in improving Aotearoa’s freshwater.

“From the high-country slopes in Canterbury to sensitive wetlands in the Nelson region, rivers in Northland, Taranaki, Gisborne, Hawke’s Bay and Otago – this funding will help our freshwater systems right across the country,” Environment Minister David Parker said.

Te Mana o Te Wai, the guiding principle of the recently-released Essential Freshwater reforms, means protecting freshwater’s life-supporting capacity. It gives priority to the health of freshwater, then the needs of people and then commercial uses.

Across the 19 projects, up to 413 jobs (FTEs) are expected to be created over the next five years.

The funding comes from the Freshwater Improvement fund, which is part of the Government’s $1.245 billion Jobs for Nature package that aims to create significant environmental benefits and employ thousands in our regions to help accelerate the recovery from the impact of COVID-19.

Funding deeds will be negotiated with the successful recipients following today’s announcement, with boots on the ground expected in the second quarter of 2021.