Our ancestors were not aware that their actions would cause harm to the environment. Centuries ago, nobody could have predicted that clearing land of its natural vegetative cover and introducing foreign species could be so detrimental to our ecosystem. If they knew the outcomes, would they have still made the same decisions?
Fortunately, looking forwards, some of us are learning and beginning to change what we do and how we do it. On the 12 August, 2017, Kids Greening Taupō’s Student Leadership Team paired up with Taupō District Council to take some action for the environment by leading our very first community planting day. With the help of our community we planted almost 1000 trees in less than an hour. Alongside the planting, there was music, a sausage sizzle and some friendly discussion.
Local MP and National Minister Louise Upston, who attended the event, recognised the damage which has been done to our environment. “We’ve got a vision of predator free 2050, and there are a whole lot of initiatives which go along with that. One is restoring habitats, through ensuring that more young people understand the damage that some of our predators do, not just to birds but to their habitats. It’s really great to see that that vision is taking off in Taupō… It’s about making sure that we restore the natural habitats which have been destroyed in the past.” Minister Upston also pledged that if National is elected for a fourth consecutive term in office, they will protect our waterways. “Everyday we look out towards that beautiful lake, and we see that we need to do more to protect it. [We need to] keep our freshwater clean.”
On the 23rd of September, we shall see if National manages to hold on against a resurgent Labour Party. Either way, we encourage all of our readers to exercise their democratic right to vote, no matter their political stripe. We thank Minister Upston for attending the event, and hope that our “great little program [we’ve] got here” continues to influence her.