Media Release February 1, 2023

Many benefits to having a focus on wetlands

The Waikato River Authority is urging landowners and conservation groups to consider
wetland restoration for waterway health and climate change mitigation.

World Wetlands Day (2 February) is this year being recognised under the theme of wetland
restoration, which has been a focus for the Waikato River Authority for the past few years.
Authority Chief Executive, Bob Penter, says the rainstorm events of the past few days are
another reminder of the value of wetlands.
“While the damage in Auckland from recent rainfall highlights the important role wetlands
can play in urban areas to capture and slow the release of rainfall, we also need many more wetlands in rural Waikato catchments to treat contaminants and provide important
ecosystem habitat,” he says.

In the past year the Waikato River Authority has funded more than $2 million towards
environmental projects related to wetland restoration.

The Waikato River Authority’s Restoration Strategy for the Waikato River and Waipā River
catchment identifies several high priority wetland projects.

The Authority will begin another funding round in the next few months with wetland
reinstatement and improvement a continuing priority.