Chicken litter, pig effluent and cast-offs shared centre stage today in the Taranaki Regional Council's annual Environmental Awards.
Among the 12 recipients were a pig farmer who generates electricity from his effluent ponds, a company that makes fertilizer from chicken litter and two waste operators who go the extra mile to prevent discarded items from going to the landfill.
Other awards were made for water efficiency gains in South Taranaki; an oil and gasfield operator's environmental stewardship; a major effort to clear a farm of pest plants; impressive riparian protection work on two other farms; and environmental initiatives at two schools and a kindergarten.
"Today's awards cover a wide range of environmental projects and activities, and it's important to celebrate the enthusiasm, innovation and know-how that have gone into each of them," says the Council Chairman, David MacLeod.
"And again, they underscore a point made strongly in the Council's latest five-yearly State of the Environment Report - that Taranaki's good progress on a number of environmental fronts is the result of the efforts and investments of the entire community.
"The awards are an opportunity to recognise some of these efforts and hold them up as an example and an inspiration."
Today's 12 awards bring the total to 168 since they were inaugurated in 1993.
The awards recognise Taranaki projects or activities that contribute to or raise awareness of sustainable resource management, that are economically viable, and that are current or nearing completion.
Today's winners in the three award categories are:
South Taranaki District Council - for Inaha water demand management and efficient use.
Osflo Fertiliser Ltd - for beneficial use of biowaste.
Shell Exploration New Zealand Ltd - for sustainable development and technical innovation of the Pohokura field.
Egmont Refuse and Recycling - for consistent and innovative waste recovery.
Stratford Transfer Station - for commitment to effective reuse and recycling of resources.
Lepper Trust (Lepperton) - for environmentally beneficial resource recovery - generating electricity with biogas produced from effluent.
Lee-Anne Fox (Uruti) - for outstanding commitment to pest plant control.
Rohin and Donna Helms (Rahotu) - for riparian management and sustainable farming.
The Lovell family(Tongaporutu) - for riparian management and sustainable farming.
Frankleigh Park Kindergarten - for involving students in caring for the environment.
Ahititi Primary School - for environmental education and action.
St John Bosco Primary School- for environmental education and action.
The business/local authority and agricultural awards were presented today. The school awards will be presented at each school in the coming weeks.
More details about the award winners can be found at www.trc.govt.nz/award-winners/