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Protecting Porirua’s Ecology and Landscapes

Published: Thu 7 Jun 2018 10:32 AM
Protecting Porirua’s Ecology and Landscapes
Porirua City is working to identify and protect the important landscapes and significant natural areas that make our city special.
To do this we’re working with landowners, ecologists and landscape specialists to identify these important sites, says Nic Etheridge, Manager, Environment & City Planning.
“Our city is recognised for its natural environment – the harbour and coastline, landscapes and areas of significant biodiversity,” she says.
“The District Plan is being reviewed and through this process we’ll be considering how to best look after these areas.”
Identifying and protecting Porirua’s landscapes and significant natural areas is part of the Council’s obligations under the Resource Management Act and Greater Wellington Regional Council’s Regional Policy Statement.
“There was a time when Porirua City was widely covered in native forest. Over the years this has been cleared for timber or farming, and more recently for urban settlements, so we now have only small amounts left,” Ms Etheridge says.
“This loss of vegetation has contributed to water quality issues in the harbour, making it all the more important to protect what remains.”
The Greater Wellington region once had 98 percent forest cover, but now only 28 percent remains. In Porirua we have just 15 percent of forest cover left. There are eight indigenous plants and 16 indigenous bird species classified as critically threatened in Porirua.
If a property is part of a landscape or significant natural area it may affect what sort of land uses can take place, so the Council will work with landowners to develop its ecology and landscapes policy. Landowners with potentially significant sites on their land will be contacted directly for their feedback.
“We look forward to working together with landowners to balance land use with preserving these important parts of the city.”
More information is available at poriruacity.govt.nz
ENDS

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