Keeping it fresh

10 November 2006

Members of the public will be able to attend a free community forum at the upcoming NZ Freshwater Sciences Society conference in Rotorua to hear and ask questions of some of New Zealand’s leading lake scientists.

It will also provide an opportunity for members of the community to become better informed of the historical and cultural heritage of the Rotorua lakes.

The forum is proudly sponsored by research organisation, Ensis, and will be held between 7-9pm on Tuesday 28 November, at the Park Heritage Hotel in Rotorua.

Ensis scientist Dr Tim Payn, says the forum speakers will provide valuable insight into why New Zealand’s freshwater environments are subject to increasing pressures through a myriad of human activities.

“Our challenge as a community is to provide environmental sustainability for this precious resource,” he says.

Three speakers have been carefully selected to provide different perspectives on lakes in the Rotorua region and throughout New Zealand.

Joseph Malcolm from the Te Arawa Maori Trust Board will discuss the way in which many generations of Te Arawa Maori exercised rangatiratanga over the Rotorua lakes and used the lakes as an important and sustainable source of kaimoana.

Dr Marc Schallenberg, University of Otago, will bring a national perspective to the forum with his studies of both South and North Island lakes.

Dr John Clayton (NIWA) will discuss the impact of introduced species and other pressure on lakes, from both a local and national perspective.

All presentations will be followed by a question and answer session, providing an opportunity to discuss matters of particular interest.

The community forum extends the theme of the New Zealand Freshwater Sciences Society Conference held in Rotorua from November 27 – 30: “Keeping it Fresh”: Werohia te wero (Take up the Challenge).