Greater Wellington gets green boost to achieve climate positive by 2035

  • Published Date 23 Feb 2021

Greater Wellington's Climate Committee has approved additional funding to plan and deliver the retirement of grazing and restoration of our regional parks, a decision that will help the regional council achieve its ambitious climate goals.

Greater Wellington's Low Carbon Acceleration (LCA) Fund will allocate $620,000 to design and implement a plan to continue to retire out grazing and restore the land to its natural state across its regional parks network, with resourcing for engagement with mana whenua as a core component of the bid package.

"This latest funding boost enables us to work alongside mana whenua and to seek guidance from mātauranga Māori to build up our natural climate infrastructure,” says Greater Wellington councillor and Climate Committee Chair Thomas Nash.

Known as the Parks Retirement and Restoration Plan, the plan will reduce Greater Wellington's carbon footprint by 16 per cent of its gross emissions and 37 per cent of its net emissions by 2030, if successfully implemented.

"A dual benefit of this plan is to reduce emissions by phasing out grazing in regional parks, while at the same time absorbing emissions by restoring native forests and wetlands - it's an obvious win-win situation," says Cr Nash.

"Projects like these represent the serious change of direction that we need from councils and landowners to achieve a healthier, more resilient future for our region and our planet. We are keen to work with other councils and organisations transitioning grazed land to native forests and wetlands."

Wrapped into this plan are key objectives laid out in the Toitū Te Whenua Parks Network Plan 2020-30 that connect the health of our regional parks to a broader environment, local communities and the regional economy.

"The new role established with this additional funding will benefit all of us and our communities by ensuring we have fresh clean water and air and provide important habitat for birds and animals to thrive," says Cr Nash.

"This plan is an essential step towards achieving Greater Wellington's goal of becoming climate positive by 2035."

Find out more about Greater Wellington's Climate Committee.

Updated March 30, 2022 at 3:03 PM

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