Projects to revive land impacted by geothermal development near Reporoa have received a $100,000 funding boost in the latest round of the Government's Te Pūnaha Hihiko: Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund.
The fund is administered by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, and invests in programmes that help Māori development for the benefit of New Zealand.
Funding for the two projects has been awarded to GNS Science and its Māori partners - Tāhorakuri A1 Section 30 Trust in Ohaki.
GNS Science will work with Tāhorakuri A1 Section 30 Trust to revive land which has suffered from subsidence, loss of geothermal surface features and westward migration of the Waikato River.
AdvertisementAdvertise with NZME.
The trust administers land adjacent to the Ohaaki Geothermal Power Station and these events have had significant cultural impacts on hapū and whānau.
The trust wants to reconnect their community and economy with the geothermal land and unlock the value of resources of the land while ensuring its restoration.
"We are excited to work in partnership with GNS Science on this important first step towards recovering and healing our whenua," trust spokeswoman Tess Kora said.
"We look forward to understanding more about our options for sustainable eco-development, and ultimately reconnecting more of our whānau back to our whenua and each other."
Project leader for GNS Science, Anya Seward, said the work would build a model combining geoscience with mātauranga-a-hapū, to develop a plan for protecting, preserving and possibly restoring wāhi tapu and taonga.
"It will combine geothermal, fresh water and cultural resources with economic opportunities based on collaboration between hapū and geothermal field operators," Dr Seward said.
A second project also received a $100,00 boost, which will see GNS Science staff working with Far North iwi Te Rarawa Anga Mua to build their capacity to manage and restore parts of Hokianga Harbour.