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Small steps can make a big difference

The Paradise Valley Catchment on the job at a local farm.

Water quality will be a hot topic at this week’s Catchment Group Workshop in Tauranga.

The event which is a collaboration between New Zealand Landcare Trust and Bay of Plenty Regional Council will take place in Te Puke on Friday, November 22.

NZ Landcare Trust BOP regional coordinator Janie Stevenson says the purpose of the event is to inspire the set-up of initiatives that support farmer-led activities to improve environmental wellbeing.

The trust has set up and supported catchment groups around the country for 22 years. Janie believes farmer-led groups are the way to go when it comes to creating lasting changes to water quality.

“With new freshwater regulations coming into play next year and ongoing pressures in rural areas, solutions will need to be found by the communities along each waterway.

“We are here to help break down what needs to be done and show that even a small step in the right direction can make a big difference,” Janie says.

At the workshop, Lloyd McCall from Otago’s Pomohaka Catchment Group will talk about how to start up a catchment group and how to manage water quality.

Lloyd was one of the farmers that set up the Pomahaka Water Care Group in Otago.

The group do their own water testing, build their own treatment of wetlands and help each other with planting.

He will be speaking at the event along with Rick Burke a local sheep and beef farmer involved with Project Parore, a catchment initiative near Katikati.

Both Lloyd and Rick agree this project will take time but working together to share knowledge, encourage and help each other is the only way forward.

A workshop will follow the presentations to help develop the first steps towards creating a sub-catchment group.

Industry representatives will be available at the event to advise on how they can support groups.

The event is running from 12.30pm-3pm next Friday at The Orchard, 20 MacLouhglin Drive, Te Puke.

Lunch is provided. For more information contact: janie.stevenson@landcare.org.nz

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