Buy the Hill – Te Ahu Pātiki – find out more

Our thanks to The Press and Stuff for their continuing Buy the Hill campaign and to all the interest and support this is stimulating in our community about the Te Ahu Pātiki project.

Te Ahu Pātiki is a new a conservation park incorporating the two highest peaks on Banks Peninsula, Mt Herbert/Te Ahu Pātiki and Mt Bradley. The new Park will be managed for the regeneration of native forest and with full public access.

Links to the stories published on Saturday 5 June 2021 are given below – plus links to more information about each topic, including Natural Regeneration and Biodiversity, Walking up Te Ahu Pātiki, and Improving the Emissions Trading Scheme.

We greatly appreciate all the donations from the public that ensure this purchase is happening. Now we are seeking your support to get the new Park off to a flying start.

Natural Regeneration and Biodiversity

Read the Stuff interview with botanist Hugh Wilson describing the process of natural regeneration. We plan to use this method and harness nature to regenerate native forest through the gorse that covers much of Te Ahu Pātiki now. Read more about the biodiversity that has been lost and what we hope might return in time.

To find out more about Hugh Wilson’s philosophy watch the wonderful film “Only Fools and Dreamers”.

Walking to Te Ahu Pātiki on the Te Ara Pātaka track network

Read Vicki Anderson’s whimsical piece about walking up Te Ahu Pātiki.

To find out more about how to walk up there yourself – make sure to download the Te Ara Pātaka brochure, which explains the network of tracks leading to the summit and has a good map. Weather can change quickly and you need to plan, prepare and equip yourself well before setting out. The brochure will help you do this. Hard copies are available at the Christchurch DOC Visitor Centre in the Arts Centre on Worcester Boulevard and at all visitor information centres on Banks Peninsula.

Please be aware that logging operations at Gebbies Pass and Kaituna Valley mean that these two tracks are slippery and muddy at the moment. We therefore highly recommend walking in from Orton Bradley Park, Diamond Harbour, Monument Track or from Port Levy Saddle for a better experience at present. If you plan an overnight trip you need to book your bunks in the Packhorse and Rod Donald huts via the DOC website before departing. Keep to marked tracks at all times – goat eradication hunting is currently in progress until June 10.

For more information on all the wonderful walks on Banks Peninsula visit the Rod Donald Trust’s Banks Peninsula Walks website.

Improving the Emissions Trading Scheme

We would love to financially support Te Ahu Pātiki park in the longer term using the income from the carbon sequestered in the regenerating native forest, but the legislation is not quite there yet – as summarised by Will Harvie on Stuff.

We’ve formed a Banks Peninsula Native Forest/Climate Change group of experts to lobby for change. This group is campaigning hard to enable marginal land that is already regenerating – like Te Ahu Pātiki – to register easily into the Emissions Trading Scheme and make natural regeneration of native forest a financially viable land use.

Watch our oral submission to the Emissions Trading Scheme Select Committee using this link. Fast forward to 1:41:51 to see us presenting

Read our report explaining the carbon credit system, the current barriers and the potential for change here.

Read our oral presentation to the Select Committee hearing on the Emissions Trading Scheme, or read the full submission.

Read our comments to the Climate Change Commission draft advice here.

We look forward to meeting with James Shaw in early July – a visit arranged prior today’s the Stuff article.

We are hopeful that the legislation and grants systems will change in future and incentivise the conversion of marginal land to naturally regenerating native forest – thus providing a key lever to support Aotearoa’s Climate Change Strategy and restore our native biodiversity.