A Peek Into the Future for Point Wells

On Saturday, 11th October three HarbourCare members went down to the seaside of the new subdivision at Point Wells. It was 10am, just before the peak of a spring tide. It was a pleasant spring day with a light Southerly breeze and a slight chop on the water. We were very impressed by the volume of seawater covering the area the Council has designated as Esplanade Reserve”.

Esplanade reserve

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Orewa Madness! Trying to Defy Sea Level Rise?

How can Auckland Council have approved this multi-million dollar apartment development on Orewa’s waterfront? These luxury apartments are being built barely twelve metres from an eroding shore, and have the ground floor only about three metres above sea level with a basement below that. With escalating risks from erosion due to rising seas such development surely should be avoided?

Orewa 1

The above artist’s impression on the cover of a recent North Shore Property Press is based on a real oblique aerial photo, which clearly shows the erosion problem on the shore, the public footpath undercut on the right, and a steep erosion scarp with rocks placed in front of the proposed apartments.

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More Concerns About Spread of Marine Invasive Species from Sandspit During Marina Construction

Jon Nicholson from the Sandspit Yacht Club Marina Society has assured us that the various marine invasive species found at Sandspit within the proposed marina footprint will not be spread by dumping the dredged spoil at sea because of the technique they intend to use for dealing with the dredged material (Mahurangi Matters, 19 March 2014, page 7).

Figure 1.  Large quantities of highly invasive Australian droplet tunicate festoon the low tide and shallow sandstone reef in the Sandspit estuary, including the footprint of the proposed marina.  Although tunicates may be killed in the stockpiling and draining process before dredgings are shipped to Great Barrier island, there is still a huge risk of larvae settling on the bottom of the barges themselves while being loaded at Sandspit.  Tunicates attached to the barges would then release larvae all the way across the Hauraki Gulf to the dump site and return. (Photo: 8 April 2014).

Figure 1. Large quantities of highly invasive Australian droplet tunicate festoon the low tide and shallow sandstone reef in the Sandspit estuary, including the footprint of the proposed marina. Although tunicates may be killed in the stockpiling and draining process before dredgings are shipped to Great Barrier island, there is still a huge risk of larvae settling on the bottom of the barges themselves while being loaded at Sandspit. Tunicates attached to the barges would then release larvae all the way across the Hauraki Gulf to the dump site and return. (Photo: 8 April 2014).

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“Houston, we have a problem.” A case of cockle déjà vu.

It’s happening again! Our wonderful cockles in the Whangateau Harbour are dying in what appears to be an event similar to that in 2009 when 80% of our cockles died.

A dead and gaping cockle lies moribund and stinking on the sand surface over the cockle beds off Lew’s Bay in the Whangateau Harbour.

A dead and gaping cockle lies moribund and stinking on the sand surface over the cockle beds off Lew’s Bay in the Whangateau Harbour.

In the summer of 2009 Whangateau Harbour residents noticed an awful smell coming off the harbour flats. It soon became obvious that it was caused by many thousands (in fact millions) of dead cockles rotting in the sun.

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Progress Toward Marine Spatial Plan for the Hauraki Gulf

Hauraki Gulf

Kawau Island – Hauraki Gulf

Following the official  launch of “Sea Change”, the Marine Spatial Planning process proposed for the Hauraki Gulf, at the Hauraki Gulf Forum seminar at the Auckland Museum on 9th September 2013, further progress has been made.

A meeting at the Auckland Museum on Friday 11th October collected a very diverse group of marine-oriented individuals and organizations together in one room.  There were roughly 200 people there.  The day was focused mainly on getting started on procedures to end up with who is on the Stakeholder Working Group, which is really the grass-roots part of the project where individuals and groups effectively produce the plan.

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Matakana Village Development Decisions (Plan Change 64)

Sewerage Works at Jones Road

Sewerage Works at Jones Road


By Elizabeth Foster

We put in a submission (see Sewage Entering Harbour) opposing the pumping of sewage from Matakana to our harbour. The Commissioners acknowledged the issue and declined all submissions which would have resulted in intensification in the village and would have pushed sewage beyond the limit of 2000 people imposed by Watercare.

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Mangrove Seedling Removal Trial at Whangateau Harbour

Our band of seven (plus the photographer) with our sacks of seedlings

Our band of seven (plus the photographer) with our sacks of seedlings

Summary

A trial removal of mangrove seedlings was carried out at Whangateau Harbour on 12th October 2012.  An area of approximately two hectares was cleared in the southern arm of the Harbour (Waikokopu Creek) south of the causeway to Omaha and on the eastern side of the Harbour.  Details of the trial area and actual area cleared are shown in the maps below.  The rate of clearance appeared to be approximately one hectare per 10 people per hour.  To effectively clear, and maintain clear, the appropriate area of mangrove seedlings south of the causeway by these methods would take approximately 500 to 700 volunteer hours annually.
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