Enthusiatic community members have been working with NIWA and Greater Wellington Regional Council staff to monitor water quality and other indicators of importance to people who recreate in the Hutt River near Poets Park.
Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) has emerged as a form of development that, among other objectives, aims to deliver resilient water ways providing a range of benefits to urban communities. NIWA’s Urban Aquatic Environments group has investigated how resilience concepts provide a basis for discriminating between WSUD and conventional urban development approaches.
Didymo, a mat-forming freshwater diatom is now a familiar and unwelcome feature of many South Island rivers. In New Zealand, it is generally accepted that didymo is an introduced organism, but not everyone accepts that. New science provides a strong case for its ‘introduced organism’ status.
The long awaited National Environmental Monitoring Standard (NEMS) for Discrete Water Quality was released in draft form for public comment in October.
New Zealand’s rivers, lakes and coastal waters are highly valued for swimming and other contact recreation activities. To satisfy both public health and state of the environment objectives, monitoring and reporting of the suitability of these waters for recreation must be meaningful and robust.
NIWA is a key contributor to the National Science Challenge on Biological Heritage hosted by Landcare Research. The challenge is to “Reverse the decline of New Zealand’s biological heritage, through a national partnership to deliver a step change in research innovation, globally leading technologies and community and sector action” and covers both terrestrial and freshwater environments.
Our Land and Water is the science challenge that addresses conflicts and tradeoffs between the needs for agricultural productivity and environmental health and protection. NIWA plays a big role in Our Land and Water, particularly in biophysical science and tool development.
A presentation by NIWA’s Chief Scientist Freshwater and Estuaries, Dr John Quinn, at the Biological Heritage National Science Challenge, Wellington, May 2017.
The naturally high organic content and slightly acidic nature of peat lakes gives them uniqueness and great ecological value but it also makes them challenging ecosystems to rehabilitate once degraded.
Fine sediment is New Zealand’s most widespread water contaminant, degrading ecosystems, infilling dams and reservoirs and impairing recreational, cultural and aesthetic values in our rivers, estuaries and coastal seas.