$1.7M funding for erosion control

19 Jun 2023, 9:56 AM

An application by Northland Regional Council has secured $1.7 million in funding over four years, from the Sustainable Land Management Hill Country Erosion Programme, administered by the Ministry for Primary Industries.

Amy Macdonald, who chairs the council’s Natural Resources Working Party, says the funding will be used to support the council’s ongoing programme targeting the management of highly erodible land and promoting good land use.

“Essentially this funding – available between 01 July this year and 30 June 2027 – will enable us to extend the achievements of the current successful HCEF project which ends in June this year.”

Nationally the government has allocated $25 million to 14 regional erosion control programmes for the four years beginning July.

In Northland, Cr Macdonald says the council will be targeting reducing erosion on highly erodible land.

“There will also be funding to plant natives on erosion prone land, helping to enable land use change from pasture to trees.”

Northland has major erosion issues, with over 60 percent of the region and 40% of the region’s grazing land classified as highly erodible. Eroded sediment is Northland’s biggest natural pollutant, research showing the Bay of Islands alone has lost an average of 500,000 tonnes annually for the past century.

Councillor Macdonald says sediment going into our rivers and coastal environment can have a number of adverse effects.

“Sediment can reduce light levels in the water, which affects plant growth, and hinder the ability of animals to find prey and avoid predators. It can also smother marine plants and animals, and cause sandy environments to change into shallow, turbid, muddy environments.”

Councillor Macdonald says applications for a share of Northland’s $1.7M funding will be managed thorough the council’s usual Environment Fund process.

“To enquire about making an application call your local land management adviser or call 0800 002 004 and ask to speak to a land management adviser or email [email protected]

Erosion prone hill country.

Erosion prone hill country.