Quake-dam­aged land project un­der way

Kaikoura Star - - OUT & ABOUT - PIPPA BROWN

The Kaiko¯ura Plains Re­cov­ery Project has been of­fi­cially launched.

Two weeks ago farm­ers and the com­mu­nity came to hear from the project sup­port­ers – the Min­istry of Pri­mary In­dus­tries (MPI), Fon­terra, Dairy New Zealand and En­vi­ron­ment Can­ter­bury.

The three-year project, pri­mar­ily funded with $600,000 from MPI’s earth­quake re­cov­ery fund has been put to­gether to help farm­ers man­age earth­quakedam­aged farm­land, and to help get their farms back to the same, if not bet­ter state than they were be­fore the earth­quake.

The project would help to un­der­stand the prob­lems the earth­quake had caused to the ground, and how lev­els had changed af­ter the earth­quake, which may mean a change in land use in some ar­eas.

Project man­ager Jodie Hog­gard said she was pleased with the turnout.

‘‘It shows there’s a wide in­ter­est in the project and that peo­ple want to know more.

‘‘En­gage­ment is one of the main keys to suc­cess of this project,’’ said Hog­gard.

‘‘I have a great bunch of folk who have come on to the gov­er­nance group to help me drive the project for the next three years, so a big thanks to them.’’

Hog­gard hopes with so much lo­cal knowl­edge the group can hit the ground run­ning.

Of­fi­cially opened by Mayor Win­ston Gray the launch at Done­gal House pro­vided an over­view of the project to the com­mu­nity, and an op­por­tu­nity to in­tro­duce the project man­ager, and gov­er­nance group made up of farm­ing, com­mu­nity and ru¯nanga rep­re­sen­ta­tives, and to thank the ma­jor con­trib­u­tors.

Mem­bers of the gov­er­nance group, Si­mon Mackle, Tony Blunt, De­siree Bolton and Cather­ine Lamb spoke about how the project can sup­port landown­ers and farm­ers on the Kaiko¯ura plains with op­tions for land and water man­age­ment, given the changes cre­ated by the earth­quakes.

En­vi­ron­ment Can­ter­bury coun­cil­lor and dairy farmer Claire McKay said the suc­cess­ful col­lab­o­ra­tion of farm­ers and in­dus­try part­ners over the last two years pro­vided the foun­da­tion for the project.

She said for any project to be suc­cess­ful, it needed to be based on strong and trusted re­la­tion­ships.

The Kaiko¯ura Plains Re­cov­ery Project was re­flec­tive of the col­lab­o­ra­tive ap­proach seen in projects like the Can­ter­bury Water Man­age­ment Strat­egy, where groups such as: Kaiko¯ura Dis­trict Coun­cil, the ru¯nanga, lo­cal com­mu­nity, in­dus­try, and En­vi­ron­ment Can­ter­bury worked closely to­gether.

‘‘While this project is pri­mar- ily for earth­quake re­cov­ery, it’s a won­der­ful op­por­tu­nity to make sure that out of dis­as­ter, rises some­thing spe­cial and unique to you and your com­mu­nity, where en­vi­ron­men­tally, eco­nom­i­cally and so­cially, you will ul­ti­mately end up in a bet­ter space.’’

For more in­for­ma­tion con­tact Jodie (027) 551 5902 or email jodie.hog­gard@ecan.govt.nz.

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