NEXT Predator Free Community Champion
NEXT Foundation has engaged Wellingtonian Kelvin Hastie as the NEXT Predator Free Community Champion. Kelvin successfully spearheaded the Crofton Downs Predator Free Community project in Wellington, which was seed funded by the Morgan Foundation. In his role with NEXT, Kelvin will be working alongside Wellington City Council and the Greater Wellington Regional Council in its mission to become the first capital city in the world to be predator free. NEXT is also supporting Kelvin to mobilise other predator free communities, helping with the wider vision of New Zealand becoming predator free by 2050. Click to read more
An ambitious conservation project, Project Taranaki Mounga aims to make Egmont National Park the first predator-free national park, creating a haven for native wildlife. NEXT Foundation has committed to fund a share of an initial 18-month assessment phase of a ten-year project to be carried out with the Department of Conservation. The project will kick off with pest and weed control over 34,000 hectares which includes Egmont National Park and a small number of volcanic peaks and offshore islands. The huge advantage to the longevity of the project is the surrounding pastureland which turns the mountain into an island. Click to read more
Zero Invasive Predators (ZIP)
ZIP is an initiative that will enhance our native bird life through innovative methods of predator control. It is focused on developing and trialing systems to permanently remove invasive predators – rats, stoats and possums – from large areas of mainland New Zealand and secure them against reinvasion. Click to read more
FOUNDATION ENVIRONMENTal INITIATIVES
In addition to supporting the establishment of the NEXT Foundation, Annette and Neal Plowman have initiated or supported several other major philanthropic projects, through their benefaction of a charitable trust. These include:
PROJECT JANSZOON – TOGETHER RESTORING THE ABEL TASMAN
Project Janszoon, initiated in late 2011, aims to transform the ecological prospects of the Abel Tasman National Park by 2042. The project team works with the Department of Conservation, the Abel Tasman Birdsong Trust, iwi and community to ensure that biodiversity values in the park are no longer threatened by incursions of invasive weed and pest species, and that populations of key indicator species of birds, animals and plants are robust and show favourable trends on all vital measures.
ROTOROA – AN ISLAND RESORT
Rotoroa Island Trust was established in 2007. This funded a 99-year lease of Rotoroa Island (from The Salvation Army of New Zealand) in the Hauraki Gulf. The goal is to create a conservation park that, working in partnership with the Auckland Zoo, will become a sanctuary for a range of endangered New Zealand species. As well as providing public access, the endowment has funded heritage building restoration, a major re-vegetation project with the planting of 400,000 native plants, and the construction of an award winning visitor centre which opened its doors in 2011. In 2013 Rotoroa Island won the Ministry for the Environment’s annual Green Ribbon Award in the category of ‘Protecting our Biodiversity’.
Having eradicated pests and planted 400,000 native plants on the 82ha island in the Hauraki Gulf, Rotoroa Island Trust and Auckland Zoo have joined forces to establish a wildlife sanctuary. Threatened native bird and reptile species are being introduced and managed to help ensure they not only survive but also thrive. The partnership is also focused on educating young New Zealanders about the importance of looking after our native species and protecting the environment generally. Run by Auckland Zoo educators, year 5 to 13 students are visiting the island to participate in hands-on conservation fieldwork. All field trips are strongly linked with schools’ curriculum.