Conservation

Preservation of whitewater, threats to recreational amenity, wild and scenic rivers.

Meridian abandons proposed Mōkihinui dam

Meridian announced today that they are no longer pursuing a dam on the wild and scenic Mōkihinui River citing concerns over their ability to secure resource consents and approval to inundate conservation land. The proposed 80m dam would have inundated an entire class III-IV section from Mōkihinui Forks down to Seddonville. It would effectively eliminate the upstream class IV-V section from the Johnson-Allan confluence by replacing the lower run with a 14km lake. Whitewater NZ had appealed the resource consents to the Environment Court along with Department of Conservation, Forest & Bird, and West Coast Environmental Network Trust.

In a Whitewater NZ media release, Conservation Officer Tony Ward-Holmes said, "This decision has meant that the Mokihinui will remain a pristine river valley, providing outstanding wilderness kayaking and rafting opportunities."

Protecting New Zealand's rivers

The NZ Conservation Authority (NZCA) released a report late in 2011 entitled Protecting New Zealand’s Rivers. The full report is available on the Department of Conservation website, www.doc.govt.nz and is well worth a read. The NZCA is an appointed representative body whose role is to advise the Minister of Conservation and the Director-General of Conservation.

Forest and Bird urge support for wild Mokihinui

Forest and Bird have launched a campaign against taxpayer-owned Meridian Energy's proposal to dam the wild and scenic Mōkihinui River. "Forest & Bird was joined by MPs, including Chris Hipkins, Peter Dunne and Kevin Hague, and representatives of organisations representing kayakers, rafters and trampers, who also want the river to remain in its natural state." The campaign invites supporters of a natural, undammed Mokihinui to send an e-card to Meridian Energy (or via Facebook) opposing the scheme. Please join the campaign, and let your paddling buddies know about it.

Consent moratorium on Waiau River

Environment Canterbury Commissioners have imposed a moratorium on resource consents to take, dam, divert or use water in the Waiau River catchment, saying “A moratorium would also allow due consideration to be given to the vision and principles of the Canterbury Water Management Strategy as set out in the Environment Canterbury Act."