August 11, 2023

One millionth KMR tree

The Kaipara Moana Remediation programme has reached a milestone of one million native trees planted or contracted to go in the ground this winter.

The milestone was reached this week and KMR leader Justine Daw said she is extremely proud of her team and the wider community for achieving such a notable milestone just 18 months after KMR programme began its work.

Work is currently underway to fast track the planting of the next million trees, with KMR now working with over one third of the estimated 1,500 pastoral landowners in the Kaipara Moana catchment.

So far, more than 94,000 hectares of land are now managed under recognised KMR Sediment Reduction Plans, with over 440 Plans contracted with landowners.

In total, KMR has invested in projects worth over $10.3m across 200 hectares and more than 480km of fencing has been completed or contracted – the same distance as Poutō Beach to Auckland and back.

Kaipara Moana Remediation (KMR) invests in projects to reduce sediment run-off into the Kaipara harbour. Funded by the Ministry for the Environment, Northland Regional Council and Auckland Council, KMR supports landowners across the 600,000-hectare catchment to protect and restore waterways and retire eroding hillsides.

“The success of this project is far-reaching across the entirety of the Kaipara Moana catchment. We know when we plant these trees it is not just about sediment reduction in our waterways because there are also benefits from carbon storage, wider water quality improvements and broader environmental benefits from regenerating bush,” says Justine.

Nadeine Dommisse, Deputy Secretary, Policy Implementation and Delivery, Ministry for the Environment, says the Jobs for Nature programme was an initiative created by the Government as part of the Covid Response Recovery.

“It was an ambitious project and fundamentally it is about investing in sustainable, nature-based jobs for community,” she says.

“I am pleased to offer my heartfelt congratulations to the KMR team on the milestone of one million trees over the past 18 months.

“The recent extreme weather events have highlighted again, how important nature- based solutions for erosion control and sediment reductions are, and I would like to acknowledge the work that has gone into achieving this milestone.

“We wish KMR well in their endeavours to amplify programme delivery with the rollout of the soil conservation strategy and thank the team for the work on the ground so far.”

Justine says the KMR programme is also about growing people and investing in local communities – to date KMR has accredited 28 local businesses and 21 nurseries as KMR suppliers and trained 57 people as KMR Field Advisors to work with local landowners taking action.

The millionth tree is proof of what an immensely positive impact this kaupapa is having on the community and the environment.

“KMR is designed to support local, nature-based employment, training and accreditation and the success so far is testament to the partnership of all parties involved,” says Justine.

“Last month, through our collaboration with the New Zealand Association of Resource Management (NZARM), KMR piloted a national training course on wetlands and soil erosion risk management, interwoven with mātauranga Māori.  It is really inspiring to see young people come on board, learn skills and be supported into nature-based career pathways.”

The training course was the start of KMR’s support for a national programme to develop a formal qualification for freshwater farm plan advisors.

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