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Cleaning up local waterways

The Budget 2011 heralded a new dawn for freshwater in New Zealand, with the announcement of a new fund to clean up our lakes, rivers and streams.

The $15 million fund was earmarked for regional councils to clean up nationally significant water bodies polluted by poor historic management.

The Fresh Start for Fresh Water Clean-up Fund was centred on cleaning up significant rivers and lakes. Many of these significant water bodies required major investment for clean ups; those investments were beyond the capacity of councils to meet the cost alone.

Decisions for funding were based on the ability of the applicant to ensure the prevention of ongoing pollution and prioritised projects that would generate the greatest national benefit.

The Crown’s investment of $15M has leveraged a total investment of over $60M towards the clean up of seven nationally significant waterbodies. The funding has been a catalyst for greater collaboration between councils, industry and communities to restore the health of their freshwater resources and has embodied the concept of safeguarding our environment for future generations.

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