In the Wellington Region, and across Aotearoa, flooding impacts more people, more often than any other natural hazard. Flooding puts lives and livelihoods at risk and can damage property and critical infrastructure.  

Regional Councils’ flood protection schemes provide the first line of defence for communities across Aotearoa. In our Region, there are approximately 200,000 people living alongside rivers who need protecting from flooding, and erosion, that’s being accelerated by climate change.  

An opportunity to accelerate our flood protection work

In May 2020, Kānoa – the Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment’s regional economic development unit – sought to fund climate change resilience projects as part of  Government’s Covid-19 recovery efforts.   

After securing funding in November 2020, a team was formed to deliver a range of flood protection engineering projects that would help build more resilient river communities and our Climate Resilience Programme (CRP) was born.

By September 2023, this programme had completed 14 flood resilience and riverside improvement projects along Te Awa Kairangi/Hutt River, Ruamāhanga River, and Porirua Stream.

Delivering additional benefits for communities

This was our first programme to expressly set out to deliver wider cultural, social, economic and environmental benefits alongside our engineering projects. We called these our Broader Outcomes initiatives. 

Here are a few Broader Outcomes highlights:

  • We worked alongside volunteers, school kids and others to plant over 65,000 plants in riverside spaces – making them more inviting for you AND to help native birds thrive.
  • We improved three riverside walking and cycling paths to make getting active safer and easier.
  • We supported Mills Albert Ltd, our main contractor, to deliver initiatives that have helped improve the mental health and wellbeing of their 90+ strong team.
  • We supported Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairarapa to advance their programme reconnecting tane who have recently been in prison back to their whenua and marae.

Check out this video that features Raven from Mills Albert Ltd sharing the benefits she gained from participating in wellbeing training: 

We, and our partners, were highly commended at the 2023 LGFA Taituarā Local Government Excellence Awards for our Broader Outcomes work. Our congratulations to Tauranga City Council who won in this category. Congratulations also go to our main contractor, Mills Albert Ltd for winning the Wellington Gold ACC Workplace Safety Award 2023.  

A $23.6M investment was made to deliver the full Climate Resilience Programme, by: us at Greater Wellington ($12.5M), Kānoa ($10.7M), Masterton District Council ($340K), Hutt City Council ($80K) and KiwiRail ($96K). 

Updated September 21, 2023 at 11:59 AM

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0800 496 734