This funding will help accelerate Million Metres towards achieving its vision of restoring this country’s waterways as vital havens for wildlife, where it is once again normal to swim in them and drink from them.
Million Metres is New Zealand’s only dedicated programme for connecting local waterway restoration projects with large-scale funding and resources.
Its goal is to raise funds to plant one million metres of waterways with native plants and trees. 45,000 metres of waterways have already been planted and the government funding will enable planting to accelerate and achieve significant impact for New Zealand waterways during the next three years.
Georgina Hart, Project Lead Water at Sustainable Business Network and Million Metres, says urban and rural waterways nationwide are in trouble.
Individuals and community groups nationwide are deeply concerned about the situation and want to do more for their natural environments but can lack the necessary funding, expertise and connections.
“Million Metres is designed to support and accelerate community action for water restoration by providing money, expertise and support that assists local projects to be successful.
“Everything we do is designed to get the best possible long-term results.”
Ms Hart says the partnership with the Ministry for the Environment is important because it shows the Ministry recognises the value of supporting communities to take care of their local waterways.
“By strengthening the connection between people and nature, and by working together, we will be able to make a significant and sustainable difference to Aotearoa’s waterways for the benefit of future generations. This funding is crucial in achieving these outcomes”.