There is good news for the Healthy Waters team working on the Hōteo River project in the Rodney district.
The government’s Freshwater Improvement Fund has contributed more than $1 million to support the five-year, $2 million project to reduce the amount of sediment discharging from the river into the Kaipara Harbour.
The Hōteo River is the second-largest contributor to the sediment build-up in the harbour, which is stressing both the freshwater and marine environments.
Auckland Mayor Phil Goff says, “This funding will support Auckland Council’s efforts – which include my Million Trees Programme – to protect and improve the freshwater environment across our region."
“It’s important Aucklanders are able to enjoy our region’s fresh waterways and we’re pleased the government is working alongside us to improve the quality of our water.”
Over the years, deforestation and land clearance have removed vegetation from the river banks in the Hōteo catchment. Combined with highly erodible soils this has created a 'perfect storm' of factors influencing sediment creation on the catchment.
The team will work with local iwi and landowners on a range of sustainable land-management practices and natural engineering options to improve freshwater quality.
Auckland Council's Environment and Community Committee Chair, Penny Hulse, says, “The grant will allow our Healthy Waters team to implement previous findings on the Hōteo River by putting in place natural engineering solutions to reduce in-stream erosion."
“It will also support planting and fencing along streambanks to reduce the impact of erosion.”