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Call for climate advocates

Climate advocates are being urged to step up and assist Masterton District Council [MDC] in its efforts to combat climate change.

The Climate Advisory Group is MDC’s first climate initiative since it adopted its Climate Action Plan last year.

The group is looking for six members to represent the community, alongside four iwi representatives, and councillors Marama Tuuta and Tom Hullena.

The group will provide advice to help ensure climate change considerations are put at the centre of council policy decisions and planning for Masterton District’s future.

Community members will be considered based on their interest and knowledge of climate change, climate advocacy, and Te Tiriti o Waitangi. They must also demonstrate a commitment Masterton district’s future, and either be living in or have a close connection to the area.

The district’s climate change response has to come from all of the community, Tuuta said.

“We are a culturally diverse community, and I hope to see interest from people with a variety of backgrounds and skills who can bring their commitment to helping guide the way we respond to our taiao [environment].

“Adopting the Climate Action Plan was just the first step. Now as a community we must get on and do the mahi to implement it.

“Creation of the Climate Advisory Group is the first action in the plan, and I know we have talented people in our community, with really good ideas.

“Those people come from Matauranga Maori, science and farming, and all should be part of it.”

It’s hoped there’ll be interest from the agricultural, industrial and education sectors, as well as people from communities already affected by climate change, Hullena said.

“It is crucially important that we tap into community expertise and motivation. The council cannot be all things to all issues, so it is really important we utilise community capability, energy, and motivation to build and grow what is already working well in the community..

“A youth voice will also be important as they bring huge enthusiasm and connection to other youth,” he said.

A selection panel made up of Tuuta, Hullena and Mayor Gary Caffell will appoint the six community members.

    Interested people can register via an online form or at the council’s office at 161 Queen St, Masterton, or Masterton District Library, 54 Queen St.

Helen Holt
Helen Holt
Helen Holt is a reporter at the Wairarapa Times-Age and enjoys reporting on a variety of topics, regularly covering Wairarapa events, tourism, local businesses, and the occasional health story.

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