Aucklanders treasure our marine environment, placing a high value on access to sandy beaches and recreational activities such as fishing and diving.
As our population and economy grows, land development can have an unwelcome impact on our environment by allowing sediment from construction into our rivers and streams.
Councillor Penny Hulse, Chair of the Environment and Community Committee, is delighted that Auckland Council has taken a lead role in the development and implementation of an industry best-practice guideline to help protect the environment while enabling house building to continue.
Auckland Council has worked with industry experts and mana whenua to produce the GD05 document, which provides guidance for regulators and developers to safely and effectively incorporate sediment control practices into all scales of land development.
“Protecting our natural heritage from the impacts of development is an underlying value in the Auckland Plan and an intrinsic component to building a resilient and environmentally sustainable city,” says Hulse.
Managing environmental impacts of development
Erosion is the process of soil being dislodged from surfaces, while sediment is the transport and deposition of these eroded soils into areas where it can negatively impact the environment.
The process of removing vegetation and exposing soils means a much higher potential for both erosion and sedimentation, with potentially negative impacts on nearby waterways, explains Sarah Sinclair, Chief Engineer.
“Auckland Council produces guidance to help our developers meet the requirements of the Unitary Plan in an environmentally sustainable way, and both this document and our guidance on water sensitive design are crucial to developing a world-class city,” she says.
GD05 has already been adopted by other councils, including the Canterbury and Queenstown Lakes District councils, and on Saturday night received the Best Publication of 2017 Award from the Resource Management Law Association.
The award recognised the collaboration between Auckland Council, Beca and SouthernSkies in producing the Erosion and Sediment Control for Land Disturbing Activities in the Auckland Region (GD05), and the support from councillors and industry in developing the document.
It is the latest in a long line of critical acclaim, received from New Zealand’s public and private sectors.