TRAVEL GAZETTE – The New Zealand government has announced new funding to help clean up the country’s most polluted fresh waterways in a move which will please tourism officials.
The new funding of 67.21 million U.S. dollars over 10 years would help communities improve water quality to meet new national standards for rivers, lakes and aquifers, Environment Minister Nick Smith said in a statement.
It was part of a broader package of measures to strengthen new national standards, including new rules to keep stock out of waterways, and new requirements for minimizing nutrient losses and efficient water use.
“This fund will help communities achieve their desired water quality and quantity limits faster,” Smith said.
“This new fund is about maintaining momentum in improving New Zealand’s freshwater management.”
The government has come under increasing pressure to clean up waterways, after years of intensification and expansion of the polluting dairy industry.
Sectors of the tourism industry, which overtook dairy as the country’s biggest export earner last year, have become more vocal in demanding the country live up to its “clean and green” reputation.