Upscaling work already underway to restore two iconic ecosystems will deliver jobs and a lasting legacy, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says.
“The Jobs for Nature programme provides $1.25 billion over four years to offer employment opportunities for people whose livelihoods have been impacted by the COVID-19 recession.
“Two new projects funded through the programme highlight how Jobs for Nature can contribute to restoring the natural environment and delivering a lasting conservation legacy in communities across Aotearoa,” Kiritapu Allan said.
Kahuria Te Waihora Restoring Nature Project
Canterbury’s famous Te Waihora wetlands restoration work will be boosted with $2.6 million from the government’s Jobs for Nature programme.
“Employing up to 31 people over a four year period, the investment in the Kahuria Te Waihora Project will result in planting of more than 250,000 eco-sourced native plants and trees over 44ha on selected sites around the margins of Te Waihora,” Kiri Allan said.
“Workers will be undertaking ground preparation, planting and weed management along with other conservation tasks to improve the biodiversity and freshwater values of this lake of significance.”
Liz Brown, Te Taumutu Rūnanga Chair, said that as kaitiaki of Te Waihora, for generations Te Taumutu Rūnanga whānau have advocated for the care, restoration, enhancement, and protection of our lake.
“Our aspiration is to restore the mauri of Te Waihora thereby enhancing a healthy and plentiful fish basket that all hapū can gather from. Mass native planting around Te Waihora will contribute to our aspirations and employ many people in our takiwā. We are excited to be part of this project.”
Wainuioru Catchment Restoration
In the Wairarapa $816,000 of Jobs for Nature funding will build on the work of the Wainuioru Community River Care Group in improving the health of waterways in the upper reaches of the Wainuioru catchment.
Up to eight people will be employed to remove pest plants and trees in the catchment, while the investment will also fund capacity for the development of further restoration projects.
“It is fantastic that Jobs for Nature can accelerate this vital conservation programme in the Wairarapa while providing local people with meaningful work and showcasing how the rural sector are addressing environmental issues in the region,” Kiri Allan said.