Frustration with the cost, time and process to reduce mangrove growth in their areas has seen the Thames-Coromandel and Hauraki District Councils band together to be more proactive on behalf of their communities.
Thames Coromandel District Council and the Hauraki District Council have passed resolutions to proceed with a joint Mangrove Management Bill, which proposes each council may prepare a draft mangrove management plan in relation to its coastal area and maintain acceptable levels of mangrove vegetation in order to restore, protect or enhance the amenity values and/or ecosystems of the coastal area.
The proposed joint Mangrove Management Bill is borne out of frustration with the cost, time and process to reduce mangrove growth in their areas.
The draft local bill will now be publicly notified and presented to Parliament by Minister Scott Simpson, MP for Coromandel Electorate.
Download a copy of the TCDC and HDC Mangrove Management Bill 2017 [PDF, 56 KB]
"We are acting on behalf of our communities who are disenchanted with the process when it comes to getting consent for mangrove removal, which has been costly, time-consuming," says Thames-Coromandel Mayor Sandra Goudie. "In Whangamata since the early 2000s there's been massive community concern about the spread of mangroves and its impact on the Whangamata Harbour and to date that process has consumed over a decade in time and in excess of $1.5M in costs."
The frustration is echoed in the Hauraki District, where the seaward advance of mangroves has considerably reduced the feeding habitat of Arctic nesting shorebirds like the bar-tailed godwit and lesser or red knot which migrate every year to the Firth of Thames, an internationally significant tidal wetland protected by the Ramsar Convention.
"We're pleased to be supporting this local bill, given the significant cost and administrative difficulties that council’s face in the control of mangroves in localised areas,” says Hauraki District Acting Mayor Toby Adams.
The Thames-Coromandel District and Hauraki District Council Mangrove Management Bill seeks to provide a collaborative mangrove management plan for both districts, or individually if preferred.
"What this local bill is trying to achieve though is to provide the opportunity for communities to help devise solutions themselves which provides for recreation amenity and preservation of other ecosystems threatened by the further spread of mangroves," says Mayor Sandra Goudie. "It will also allow Councils like ours to use our limited resources more effectively and efficiently to provide for core infrastructure and services, such as waste water treatment plants and catchment sediment management schemes to further protect estuarine environments," she says.
Communications on this Local Bill may be sent to:
- Thames-Coromandel District Council: 515 Mackay Street, Thames 3500 or Private Bag, Thames 3540, New Zealand.
- Hauraki District Council: 1 William Street, Paeroa 3600 or PO Box 17, Paeroa 3640, New Zealand.
Or, from Monday – Friday, 8.00am – 4.30pm at the following Council offices:
- Ngatea Office – 84 Orchard West Road
- Paeroa office – 1 William Street
- Waihi office – 40 Rosemont Road
- Thames office – 515 Mackay Street
- Whangamata office – 620 Port Road
- Whitianga office – 10 Monk Street
- Coromandel office – 355 Kapanga Street
Or at the following libraries - Paeroa, Waihi, Ngatea, Whangamata, Thames and Whitianga.
The Local Bill can be inspected either on-site or online until 19 June 2017.