Green Ribbon Awards 2017

The annual Green Ribbon Awards showcased farmer’s environmental work in Wellington last night

From five farmer led initiative 2017 finalists, two winners were announced by the Ministers for Environment and Conservation, who hosted the event.

The winner of community leadership category was The Banks Peninsula Conservation Trust, and in the the Kaitiaki Leadership category – Te Rūnanga-ā-Iwi o Ngāti Kahu.

Anders Crofoot, Federated Farmers National Vice President congratulates the winners and finalists.

He says the primary sector workers are not surprised, as they know the great work being undertaken daily by farmers and communities coming together to resolve and better manage environmental issues.

Anders finds it ironic that both winners live on opposite ends of the country, but says that it shows there is a growing movement and a better awareness of environmental management across the entire country.

The Banks Peninsula Conservation Trust is a 25 year old trust, initiated by a local farmer concerned about the welfare of blue penguins on his farm. Since then, it has grown into a community wide effort to protect the unique peninsula and its habitat.

Anders says the trust has established the largest private reserve in the country now. An entire stream through private farmland has been protected, and there are plans to target another stream.

Northland’s Lake Waiporohita has achieved successful restoration, which is a particularly compelling outcome with local iwi Ngati Kahu working alongside a number of stakeholders including the regional council and farmers.

Andres says multiple users of the lake were affecting its condition and it’s encouraging to see the community had foresight to take ownership of the problem.

“What both winners and finalists have demonstrated is leadership and the willingness of communities to solve their own catchment issues. This lays the gauntlet down to other regions in the country and is central to our Farmers’ Manifesto which calls for a ‘targeted catchment approach’, with community buy in and involvement,” Anders says.

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