The Major Rivers Riparian Management Project will plant approximately 100 hectares and fence 30km of riparian (riverside) land in the Wairarapa Valley. This will help to reduce erosion, improve water quality, and help plant and native animal life thrive. 

It’ll also create local jobs to: 

  • Help grow and plant over 150,000 seedlings 
  • Maintain planted areas for up to five years to ensure plants thrive 
  • Build or repair fencing.

This programme is funded equally by the Ministry for the Environment, through its Job for Nature programme, and Greater Wellington. It runs until 30 June 2026.  

After this, our efforts to enhance riverside land in the area will continue as part of Te Kāuru Floodplain Management Plan

Benefits for landowners 

This programme provides a free, no effort way for you to improve the environment for future generations.  

We’ll fully fund and install riverside fencing and/or plants. We’ll also maintain planted areas for up to five years to ensure they thrive and keep delivering benefits for you in the future.  

Your participation will:  

  • Reduce the risk of erosion and flooding impacting your land 
  • Improve water quality by creating a riverside buffer zone that helps absorb nutrients from the land before they flow into waterways  
  • Help more animals to thrive by improving water quality and creating habitats for birds. 

We’d be happy to have a no-obligation chat with you about what’s available. Email Malcolm Birch, Riparian Management Advisor, at to find out more. 

Additional benefits for landowners with stock  

When it comes to excluding livestock from waterways, there are national regulations and local rules that need to be met. This project will go a long way to helping you meet them. 

Fencing will help ensure stock are kept out of the planted area and waterways. We’d work with you to make sure any fencing installed fits the needs of your land and stock.  

Ensuring this investment delivers long term benefits  

The funding provided by Ministry for the Environment to do this work for folks in the area comes with the requirement for planting to stay in place.   

We’ll ask you to sign a contract to confirm the planting won’t be removed in future, even if your property changes hands.   

To make sure the plants thrive, and you keep getting benefits from this planting, we’ll visit once a year for up to five years to manage any pests. But we’ll never visit without your permission, and we’ll always arrange a time well in advance that works for you.  

 Don’t live on a river? You can still help 

The biggest environmental and flood protection benefits come when communities work together to have long lengths of riverbank planted.  

If you don’t own riverside property, but know someone who does, please encourage them to take part.  

Find out more 

Interested and want to find out more? Contact Riparian Management Advisor Malcolm Birch at for a no-obligation advice about what this programme offers. 

Updated September 21, 2022 at 9:04 AM

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0800 496 734