What is a whaitua committee?
The committee will work to collect and relay environmental, mana whenua, economic and technical information and community knowledge between the community, committee and the Regional Council, and to develop a chapter on Porirua for inclusion in the Regional Plan.
How do whaitua committees work?
Our Committee members are from the community, iwi , Greater Wellington Regional Council, Porirua City Council and Wellington City Council (for membership, click here). We work with the community and a range of experts to gather the public’s views and the scientific, economic and geographical information we need to understand the current state of water within the catchment and how people feel about it.
Using this and other information, we will work towards developing a vison for Te Awarua-o-Porirua catchment and a supporting set of environmental goals.
Are there other whaitua committees?
Whaitua committees have been established in the Wairarapa (the Ruamahanga Whaitua Committee) and now Porirua. They use the name whaitua because it means space or catchment, an area (often bounded by hills) through which rain water flows down rivers and streams to the sea or lakes – a place where you can find “your” water. Further whaitua committees will be established throughout the region to allow other communities to play a big role in their local water management.
How do whaitua committee’s make a difference?
Identifying what needs to be done is the first step in the process. We then develop and add our implementation plan – a programme of activity - into the regional council’s formal Natural Resources Plan, which is the blue print on how we manage all natural resources in the greater Wellington Region. It sets out the policies and regulations that control resource use.
The outcome will be action: a programme of activity that will include setting targets and limits that help us ensure our goals are met.
What has Te Awarua-o-Porirua Whaitua Committee done so far?
Since being established in December 2014 we’ve been learning about the cultural, scientific, economic and geographical aspects of the catchment. These presentations and reports are online and you can view them here.
We’ve also started a fact finding mission to learn what our local community’s views on water are. By sharing your views with us you can influence the way your land and water are managed in the future.