16 Jul 2012

Wetland to remove tonnes of pollution from Lake Rotorua

10:53 pm on 16 July 2012

Te Arawa Lakes trust chairman says Maori are waiting patiently for a rugby field-sized floating wetland planned for Lake Rotorua to be completed.

The $900,000 project is a joint initiative between the lakes trust, Rotorua District Council and Bay of Plenty Regional Council.

Toby Curtis expects the wetland, which is to be made of more than 500,000 plastic soft drink bottles and 20,000 native plants, to remove four tonnes of nitrogen and a tonne of phosphorus from the lake each year.

Meanwhile, he says there has been good support from Maori landowners to a request by the trust for them to keep unwanted nutrients out of the lake.

He says many farmers have fenced off their land about 20 metres from the water's edge to stop nutrient runoff and some are considering removing livestock and planting horticultural crops.

Rotorua council expects the wetland to be finished by the end of July.