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Situated in Golden Bay, New Zealand, Project Rameka is a carbon sink focusing on forest restoration, biodiversity and non-motorised recreation. It is also a local response to global climate change.
In 2008, Jonathan Kennett and Bronwen Wall bought the 50-hectare property in response to urgent calls from around the world for people to address humans’ negative effects on the environment. The block of marginal farmland, which included 14 hectares of plantation pine forest, was seen as a perfect opportunity to not only redress their own carbon emissions but also generate public awareness of the benefits of forests. They also sought to encourage community ownership of the project and supported the formation of an incorporated society to manage it. In late 2015, a crowd-funding campaign helped expand the project by an extra 45 hectares.
Within the first four years, over 2000 native trees had been planted by volunteers, including children from the local Motupipi Primary School, and 3 kilometers of track had been built with the dual purpose of providing easy access for pest control and recreation opportunities for cyclists and walkers. A volunteer stoat trapping team was established in 2011, and this group has been able to provide invaluable data on catch rates (available online at http://carpool.actrix.co.nz/carpool/rameka.htm).
The society also hires a local pest controller to deal with other animal and plant pests on the property, and the progress of native forest restoration is stunning.
Project Rameka is a registered charitable entity under the Charities Act 2005. Registration No. CC40736