Hui in Ruatoria on Waiapu River

WORLD FAMOUS: The Waiapu River catchment has one of the highest erosion rates per square kilometre in the world. Picture supplied

THE next stage of a 100-year plan to restore the Waiapu River will be addressed in a hui in Ruatoria tomorrow.

The Waiapu catchment has one of the highest erosion rates per square kilometre in the world, largely as a result of heavy deforestation.

The river lies at the heart of the rohe of Ngati Porou and dumps 35 million tonnes of suspended sediment, including fine soil, silts and clays, into the sea every year, 17 percent of the volume from all New Zealand rivers from 0.6 percent of the land area.

Its sediment yield is more than twice that of the Waipaoa River, the next-highest yielding New Zealand River, and nearly 10 times that of the Manawatu River.

A 2012 report found the associated environmental, social, cultural and economic impacts over the past century on the catchment, and the people who depend on its resources, had left it one of the poorest communities in New Zealand.

In 2014, the Crown committed to a 100-year partnership to restore the catchment under a memorandum of understanding between the Ministry for Primary Industries, Te Runanga o Ngati Porou (TRONPnui) and Gisborne District Council (GDC). It has an aspirational aim of “healthy land, healthy rivers, healthy people”.

Joint management agreement

The joint management agreement to co-manage the Waiapu catchment, signed between TRONPnui and GDC in 2015, further established this partnership.

The hui will address the long-term plan for the catchment, which is next in line under GDC’s freshwater catchment management planning process.

The hui has been organised by Ruatoria-based Ngati Porou researchers at He Oranga Trust and Crown research institute Scion, to discuss an adaptive governance approach developed in their project Weaving the Korowai of Papatuanuku – Adaptive Governance and Supported Environmental Decision-making.

“Landowners, hapu organisations, industry representatives, agencies, community and organisations are all invited,” said Tui Warmenhoven of He Oranga Trust.

“The hui will be about bringing together all of the people already living here in the catchment.”

Through their research, they developed an "adaptive governance model" where they would look through the viewpoint of each stakeholder, “looking at what the major issues are for each stakeholder, and how we can make the most of what we have".

“It is a more holistic approach. The biggest issues are erosion and sediment pollution, but alongside them are socio-economic and cultural degradation.

“It is a huge package and it's all correlated.”

The hui will involve presentations and discussions about the long-term plan for the catchment.

“We all know the problems, now we get to share what needs to happen for it to get better.”

THE next stage of a 100-year plan to restore the Waiapu River will be addressed in a hui in Ruatoria tomorrow.

The Waiapu catchment has one of the highest erosion rates per square kilometre in the world, largely as a result of heavy deforestation.

The river lies at the heart of the rohe of Ngati Porou and dumps 35 million tonnes of suspended sediment, including fine soil, silts and clays, into the sea every year, 17 percent of the volume from all New Zealand rivers from 0.6 percent of the land area.

Its sediment yield is more than twice that of the Waipaoa River, the next-highest yielding New Zealand River, and nearly 10 times that of the Manawatu River.

A 2012 report found the associated environmental, social, cultural and economic impacts over the past century on the catchment, and the people who depend on its resources, had left it one of the poorest communities in New Zealand.

In 2014, the Crown committed to a 100-year partnership to restore the catchment under a memorandum of understanding between the Ministry for Primary Industries, Te Runanga o Ngati Porou (TRONPnui) and Gisborne District Council (GDC). It has an aspirational aim of “healthy land, healthy rivers, healthy people”.

Joint management agreement

The joint management agreement to co-manage the Waiapu catchment, signed between TRONPnui and GDC in 2015, further established this partnership.

The hui will address the long-term plan for the catchment, which is next in line under GDC’s freshwater catchment management planning process.

The hui has been organised by Ruatoria-based Ngati Porou researchers at He Oranga Trust and Crown research institute Scion, to discuss an adaptive governance approach developed in their project Weaving the Korowai of Papatuanuku – Adaptive Governance and Supported Environmental Decision-making.

“Landowners, hapu organisations, industry representatives, agencies, community and organisations are all invited,” said Tui Warmenhoven of He Oranga Trust.

“The hui will be about bringing together all of the people already living here in the catchment.”

Through their research, they developed an "adaptive governance model" where they would look through the viewpoint of each stakeholder, “looking at what the major issues are for each stakeholder, and how we can make the most of what we have".

“It is a more holistic approach. The biggest issues are erosion and sediment pollution, but alongside them are socio-economic and cultural degradation.

“It is a huge package and it's all correlated.”

The hui will involve presentations and discussions about the long-term plan for the catchment.

“We all know the problems, now we get to share what needs to happen for it to get better.”

The hui will be tomorrow from 5.30-8.30pm at Kariaka Pa, 7242 Waiapu Road, Ruatoria.

For more information contact He Oranga Trust researchers Tui Warmenhoven on 021 413 508, or Pia Pohatu on 021 653 341.

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