$8.8m in erosion grants awardedPrimary Industries
Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy has announced $8.8 million in funding grants over four years to help councils tackle hill country erosion.
“We’ve seen the serious damage that erosion has caused after the severe storm in the Whanganui, Rangitikei and Taranaki regions, both economically and environmentally,” says Mr Guy.
“This funding round is timely, given that $4.7 million out of the total $8.8 million is going towards the Horizons Regional Council. This covers the Whanganui and Manawatu regions which have been badly affected by flooding and landslides.”
The Hill Country Erosion Fund was established in 2007 and is part of the Government’s commitment to improve the sustainability of hill country agriculture. The scheme gives regional councils and unitary authorities the opportunity to submit bids to this $8.8 million fund every four years.
This latest round saw six regional councils being successful: Northland, Taranaki, Waikato, Horizons, Hawkes Bay and Greater Wellington.
“Severe erosion has the potential to affect more than 1.14 million hectares of pastoral hill country, mainly in the North Island.
“This fund gives councils the opportunity to plan and deliver initiatives over the next four years to tackle this problem. This will include projects like tree planting, farm planning, modelling and targeted treatment works.”
The current round will provide funding that covers 549,724 hectares of erosion prone hill country and is supported by funding from local councils and landowners as well.
The erosion funding is one of a number of initiatives managed by MPI that work to counter erosion and increase afforestation in these vulnerable hill country areas. Other funds include the recently re-launched Afforestation Grant Scheme and the Erosion Control Funding Programme which targets severe erosion in Gisborne.
For more information on HCEF go to http://www.mpi.govt.nz/funding-and-programmes/natural-resources/sustainable-land-management-and-hill-country-erosion-programme/