Auckland Council

Auckland Council, New Zealand

Auckland Council

Auckland Council, New Zealand
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Wood S.A.,Cawthron Institute | Wood S.A.,University of Waikato | Taylor D.I.,Cawthron Institute | McNabb P.,Cawthron Institute | And 4 more authors.
Marine Drugs | Year: 2012

Tetrodotoxin (TTX) is a potent neurotoxin that has been identified in a range of phylogenetically unrelated marine and terrestrial organisms. Tetrodotoxin was recently detected in New Zealand in Pleurobranchaea maculata (the grey side-gilled sea slug). From June 2010 to June 2011 wild specimens were collected from 10 locations around New Zealand. At one site (Narrow Neck Beach, Auckland) up to 10 individuals were collected monthly for 6 months. Attempts were also made to rear P. maculata in captivity. Tetrodotoxin was detected in samples from eight of the ten sites. The highest average (368.7 mg kg -1) and maximum (1414.0 mg kg -1) concentrations were measured in samples from Illiomama Rock (Auckland). Of the toxic populations tested there was significant variability in TTX concentrations among individuals, with the highest difference (62 fold) measured at Illiomama Rock. Tetrodotoxin concentrations in samples from Narrow Neck Beach varied temporally, ranging from an average of 184 mg kg -1 in June 2010 to 17.5 mg kg -1by December 2010. There was no correlation between TTX levels and mass. The highest levels correspond with the egg laying season (June-August) and this, in concert with the detection of high levels of TTX in eggs and early larval stages, suggests that TTX may have a defensive function in P. maculata. Only one larva was successfully reared to full maturation and no TTX was detected. © 2012 by the authors; licensee MDPI.

Fernandez M.A.,Auckland Council
Land Use Policy | Year: 2017

Soil erosion is a serious environmental threat to New Zealand's agricultural sector. Economic costs of soil erosion are significant and the costs of adopting mitigation and management practices, given the targets set by environmetal policy, do not spread uniformly across space, economic activities and types of erosion processes. Management practices have been widely employed by farmers and promoted by several policy programs. Practices are not mutually exclusive and could be jointly adopted by comparing productivity gains against costs of implementation. However, research on the identification of the drivers of adoption is scarce in New Zealand. To identify the determinants of adoption of management practices in New Zealand farms, we combine novel survey information with data on climate and erosion in a multivariate probit framework. This framework allows identification of potential complementarity or substitution between management practices. We find significant and heterogeneous effects from erosion levels, temperature, wind velocity and primary land uses on the adoption of any of the practices. In addition, we also find significant complementarities between management practices. The results of this study are important because the complementarities relate to external effects of erosion mitigation which can help to promote public acceptability of mitigation policies. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd

Townsend M.,NIWA - National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research | Thrush S.F.,NIWA - National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research | Carbines M.J.,Auckland Council
Marine Ecology Progress Series | Year: 2011

The ability to manage complex systems effectively must stem from simplifications of ecological knowledge. We present a technique called the 'Ecosystem Principles Approach' (EPA) as a progressive way of incorporating ecology into goods and services assessments. The EPA moves away from the complexity of ecosystem functions and focuses on general ecological principles. These principles more explicitly define key elements of system functioning, are not spatially or temporally confined, and can be utilised in assessment and decision-making processes. When applied to a coastal system in New Zealand, the EPA highlighted that services were primarily dependent on connectivity and that the maintenance of healthy intertidal areas was highly important for system functioning. The approach also demonstrated a separation between locations where ecosystem functions were generated and where services were valued. A high level of multi-functionality and connectivity between goods and services in marine coastal systems suggests services should be managed collectively rather than individually. The strength of the EPA is that it aligns to the principles of 'Ecosystem- Based Management'. This approach demonstrates how ecological information can be simplified into a format that can advise policy and better integrate with management. It highlights the need for greater trans-disciplinary integration of ecology and social science to better understand how human interactions result in critical community shifts and loss of resilience. © Inter-Research 2011.

Selbie D.R.,Agresearch Ltd. | Buckthought L.E.,Auckland Council | Shepherd M.A.,Agresearch Ltd.
Advances in Agronomy | Year: 2015

Ruminants excrete as much as 70-95% of the nitrogen (N) they consume. The urine patch is the conduit through which much of this N is recycled in grazed pasture systems. This chapter focuses on three key areas: urine patch characteristics and N cycling processes; implications for N cycling at the farm and paddock scale and strategies available to mitigate N losses from the urine patch. The urine patch N loading rate is a key metric for quantifying and modeling fate of N; yet it is a derived value, relying on estimates of urine volume and N concentration, and the urine patch surface area, all of which are variable. Much is known about N cycling processes in the urine patch but further understanding of N loss, leaching of dissolved organic N, and mineralization-immobilization turnover is needed. Typical values (as a percentage of the deposited urinary N) were estimated as: 13% ammonia volatilization; 2% nitrous oxide emission; 20% nitrate leaching; 41% pasture uptake; 26% gross immobilization. The relative importance of each process is influenced by urine patch characteristics and environmental factors. Models are an important tool for scaling from the individual urine patch to the paddock and farm scale, though accounting for variability in urine patch characteristics, and spatial and temporal distribution, remains a challenge. Many potential management strategies to decrease N loss from the urine patch are still at the proof of concept stage with few actually deployed on the farm. Further research is required to integrate these into farm management systems. © 2015 Elsevier Inc.

PITTSBURGH--(BUSINESS WIRE)--PPG (NYSE: PPG) today announced the completion of a COLORFUL COMMUNITIES™ project in Mangere, New Zealand, near Auckland that helped to revitalize Whare Koa Mangere Community House. The Colorful Communities program provides PPG volunteers and products along with financial contributions to bring color and vitality to communities where the company operates around the world, such as in Auckland, where PPG has an industrial coatings manufacturing facility and a multibusiness sales office. The project brought together more than 15 PPG volunteers and community volunteers, who worked collectively for 12 days revitalizing the Whare Koa (Maori, meaning “Happy House”) Mangere Community House. PPG provided 200 liters (about 53 gallons) each of WEATHERTOUGH™ Exterior paint and of Ultimate Alkyd Semi-Gloss paint products for the project. Auckland Council is responsible for Whare Koa Mangere Community House, which was built around the 1930s and is currently an archaeological site as defined by the Historic Places Act 1993. Over 300 people per week currently participate in community programs at the site, such as a free community soup kitchen, Pasifika arts and crafts activities, church services, youth groups, counselling support, and health and fitness classes. Fatima Vaaga, Auckland Council program coordinator, people and places, programs and partnerships, arts, community and events, said the diverse local community and Auckland Council are very excited to partner with PPG and return Whare Koa to its former splendor as the local “Happy House”. The project restores the aesthetic appeal of the community house, emphasizing its cultural value for present and future generations and reflecting the bright and colorful Maori and Pasifika people who have come to call it their second home. “This Colorful Communities project enabled PPG to engage with and beautify part of the local community in Auckland, and it also offered a meaningful opportunity for our employees to work as a team whilst ‘giving back’ something tangible to the local community,” said David White, PPG general manager, New Zealand. “PPG is committed to improving our communities and encouraging our employees to participate in activities that highlight our positive culture. We will continue to provide opportunities for employees and their families to engage with local communities where we feel we can make a difference.” Tim Martin, PPG regional sales manager, architectural coatings, said, “It has been a pleasure helping the community restore this special meeting place to its former glory. The vibrancy, color and passion of the community have been truly reflected in this makeover.” The Colorful Communities program is PPG’s signature initiative for community engagement efforts, with the aim to protect and beautify the neighborhoods where PPG operates around the world. The program increases PPG’s commitment to invest in communities by adding $10 million to support efforts made during a 10-year period. It supports projects that transform community assets, providing PPG volunteers and donated PPG products. PPG completed 11 Colorful Communities projects in 2015, and it expects to complete more than 30 this year. PPG and the PPG Foundation aim to bring color and brightness to PPG communities around the world. We donated more than $7.8 million in 2015 to hundreds of community organizations across 20 countries. By investing in educational opportunities, we help grow today’s skilled workforce and develop tomorrow’s innovators in industries related to coatings and specialty materials. Plus, we empower PPG employees to make an impact for causes that are important to them by supporting their volunteer efforts and charitable giving. Learn more at and follow @PPG_Communities on Twitter. PPG: WE PROTECT AND BEAUTIFY THE WORLD™ At PPG (NYSE:PPG), we work every day to develop and deliver the paints, coatings and materials that our customers have trusted for more than 130 years. Through dedication and creativity, we solve our customers’ biggest challenges, collaborating closely to find the right path forward. With headquarters in Pittsburgh, we operate and innovate in more than 70 countries and reported net sales of $14.8 billion in 2015. We serve customers in construction, consumer products, industrial and transportation markets and aftermarkets. To learn more, visit We protect and beautify the world and Colorful Communities are trademarks and the PPG Logo is a registered trademark of PPG Industries Ohio, Inc. WeatherTough and Weather Tough are trademarks of PPG Industries Australia Pty Ltd.

Lear G.,University of Auckland | Washington V.,University of Auckland | Neale M.,Auckland Council | Case B.,Lincoln University at Christchurch | And 2 more authors.
Global Ecology and Biogeography | Year: 2013

The extent to which bacterial communities exhibit biogeographic patterns in their distribution remains unclear. We examined the relative influence of factors including geographic distance, latitude, elevation and catchment land use on the distribution and taxon richness of stream bacterial communities across New Zealand. Location: Bacterial communities were collected from biofilm growing on submerged rocks in 244 streams. Sample sites spanned a north-south gradient of over 970km, an elevational gradient of c. 750m and were collected from a variety of catchment types across New Zealand. Methods: We used automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis, a DNA fingerprinting technique, to characterize the structure and taxon richness of each bacterial community. Key attributes relating to sample location, upstream catchment land use and a suite of additional environmental parameters were collected for every site using GIS procedures. Univariate correlations between measures of bacterial community structure and latitude, elevation and distance were examined. Variance partitioning was then used to assess the relative importance of purely spatial factors versus catchment land use and environmental attributes for determining bacterial community structure and taxon richness. Results: Bacterial taxon richness was related to the geographic location of the sample site, being significantly greater at latitudes closer to the equator and reduced at higher elevations. We observed distance decay patterns in bacterial community similarity related to geographic distance and latitudinal distance, but not to elevational distance. Overall, however, bacterial community similarity and taxon richness was more closely related to variability in catchment land use than to climatic variability or geographic location. Main conclusion: Our data suggest that stream biofilm communities across New Zealand are more influenced by catchment land use attributes than by dispersal limitation. © 2013 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Forbes A.R.,Auckland Council | Craig J.L.,University of Auckland
New Zealand Journal of Ecology | Year: 2013

The ecological restoration of Tiritiri Matangi Island is a community-driven initiative that has captured the interest of the international conservation movement. Ecological restoration commonly focuses on the establishment and maintenance of functioning indigenous ecosystems through the control or eradication of invasive weeds and animal pests, indigenous species translocations, and habitat enhancement, including revegetation. Revegetation of indigenous plant communities provides an opportunity to kick-start natural processes and facilitate succession towards a diverse ecosystem. However, revegetation initiatives are often conducted in an ad-hoc manner, without clear objectives or monitoring to assess the effectiveness of the chosen approach. The objective of this study was to determine whether aspects of the revegetation of Tiritiri Matangi are meeting the restoration goals by providing habitat for indigenous diversity, particularly birds. To this end, we investigated forest structure, plant regeneration and bird numbers and species richness in three different densities of pohutukawa planting, specifically a) densely planted pohutukawa, b) thinned pohutukawa stands, and c) mixed species plantings. The Point Centered Quarter and Presence of Seedlings Along a Transect methods were used to collect data on forest structure and regeneration. Five-minute bird counts were used to gather data on bird conspicuousness and species richness. Vegetation analysis showed there were low levels of regeneration in dense pohutukawa. Similarly, results showed low bird numbers and species richness in dense pohutukawa compared with the two other vegetation types. This suggests that dense pohutukawa plantings are inhibiting vegetation diversity and regeneration, and richness and relative abundance of indigenous birds, contrary to the objectives of the Tiritiri Matangi restoration. It appears that thinning dense pohutukawa stands on Tiritiri Matangi will encourage species diversity and better meet the restoration objectives. However, this may lower landscape heterogeneity overall and have negative effects on specialist species that rely on pohutukawa habitat, including invertebrates and insectivorous, ground-dwelling birds such as the kiwi. © New Zealand Ecological Society.

Waipara N.W.,Auckland Council | Hill S.,Auckland Council | Hill L.M.W.,Auckland Council | Hough E.G.,The New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research Ltd | Horner I.J.,The New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research Ltd
New Zealand Plant Protection | Year: 2013

Kauri dieback is a pest issue that is increasingly affecting kauri forests. A water and soilborne pathogen, Phytophthora taxon Agathis (PTA), has been identiied as a causal agent of kauri dieback at multiple locations, particularly within Auckland and Northland. In 2008, a passive surveillance and adaptive management programme was initiated to manage the disease across the natural range of kauri. Surveys were initially undertaken to determine the distribution and rate of spread of kauri dieback on private land in the Auckland region. Methods to evaluate and monitor overall tree health, disease symptoms and other potential contributing factors were developed. Diagnostic sampling was undertaken to isolate and identify pathogens associated with kauri dieback. Along with PTA, other Phytophthora species and environmental stress were frequently associated with symptoms at over 400 properties inspected. Further management is now required to develop control tools and mitigate further spread. © 2013 New Zealand Plant Protection Society.

Tamura M.J.,MartinJenkins | Clarke L.B.,Auckland Council
Australian Coasts and Ports 2015 Conference | Year: 2015

The increase risk of coastal storm inundation as a result of global sea level rise and the increased frequency and severity of storm events is causing engineering, policy and planning practitioner to consider whether they have the right tools to respond effectively. Recent reports by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [1], New Zealand's Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment [2] and proposed changes to the Resource Management Act 1991 are only likely to increase the pressure to take decisive action. The Proposed Auckland Unitary Plan (PAUP) seeks to respond to the present day and future risk of coastal storm inundation. It maps the extent of coastal storm inundation under two sea level rise scenarios and requires minimum finished floor levels in existing urban areas. Further, it directs future urbanisation away from areas expected to be at risk well beyond 100 years. While the Auckland Unitary Plan Independent Hearings Panel is yet to deliver its recommendations on this matter, it is worth reflecting on the conditions and setting surrounding the introduction of the proposed planning response. This paper identifies learnings from the PAUP experience and considers what groundwork may be required to create the right settings for a second generation of planning responses. This paper cautiously suggests stronger government direction, alternatives to current process for preparing and amending plans under the Resource Management Act 1991, and increased public/private sector collaboration may be needed to move beyond first generation planning responses to coastal storm inundation risk.

Dickson M.E.,University of Auckland | Pentney R.,Auckland Council
Geomorphology | Year: 2012

Few high-resolution measurements of process-form interactions have been taken on rock coasts, but recent studies in California have shown that portable seismometers enable useful proxy measurements of wave-energy delivery to cliffs. Here we describe measurements over 20. days of high frequency ground motion of cliffs formed in sedimentary (flysch) rocks at Okakari Point, north of Auckland, New Zealand. Three sensors were located in a shore-normal array inland from the cliff top and a fourth sensor was bolted to a ledge 2. m above the cliff toe. The nearshore wave field in front of the cliff and shore platform was monitored using a shore-normal array of 5 wave gauges. The instrumentation provided measurements of wave-energy delivery and consequent ground motion, including the first observations of motion at the top and bottom of cliffs. Results showed that horizontal ground motion is dominant at the cliff top, whereas vertical motion is dominant at the cliff toe. Power spectra show that several high frequency peaks occur in data from the cliff toe, whereas a single, broader peak frequency occurs at the cliff top resulting from signal modification as seismic waves pass through tens of metres of cliff rock. A 100. m wide shore platform at the cliff toe fundamentally controls the patterns of observed energy delivery. The shore platform is nearly horizontal, elevated close to high water level, and abruptly plunges into water > 10. m deep at its seaward edge. As expected, the magnitude of ground motion at all sensors is greatest during larger waves. Measurements further show that ground motion, both at the bottom and top of the cliff, is strongest at low tide and weakest at high tide. This observation is opposite to that noted at Santa Cruz, where ground motion was greatest at high tide. At Okakari Point the most significant high frequency ground motions occur at low tide when waves are forced to break (sometimes violently) against the seaward edge of the shore platform. Four distinctive frequency peaks between 1 and 50. Hz increase in magnitude as tidal stage drops, implying that wave breaking against the outside edge of the shore platform represents an important source of vibration. A detailed understanding of the energy source (e.g. short duration shock pressures) and rock resonance is not provided by this study. However, quantifying the spatial and temporal patterns of energy delivery places strong emphasis on the important role of shore platform geometry in filtering wave-energy delivery to the cliff. During the 20-day experiment most wave energy was delivered to the outside edge of the shore platform, not the cliff toe. The geomorphic role of high-frequency shaking from wave impacts remains to be clearly demonstrated, but if wave impacts are capable of eroding rock then the data from this study imply that under present conditions the outside edge of the shore platform may be subject to higher erosion rates than the cliff toe. It is possible that the shore platform is currently being destroyed rather than created, but a longer programme of measurements is required to test this notion. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

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