Making Christchurch the epicentre of an ecosystem of change.
Our first real-time data sensor, Oracle 1, was grounded at Avonhead in July of 2019. At the time of its grounding, Oracle 1 began measuring pH, nitrates, temperature, dissolved oxygen, conductivity, and oxidation reduction potential. There are additional contaminants (such as E Coli) which must be tested manually so we've been examining those readings as well. We are also exploring options to expand our data set to include other documented contaminants in our waterways. Our goal is to make this data readily available, open-source, and transparent, and to eventually ground Oracles throughout our waterways. We will use this data to provide you with the most complete and up-to-date picture that the current technology allows and, in doing so, start to give our rivers a voice.
One of our key objectives is to help share vital information between existing water champions and to use our research to create practical resources that anyone can use to help heal our rivers. Some of the things that we are learning have really surprised us.
Did you know, for instance, that your roof and your brake pads could be part of the problem? Neither did we!
It’s our job to share that knowledge with all of you so you know what you can do TODAY to make the most positive impact.
Let’s face it, this is a BIG JOB. If we’re going to get our rivers drinkable again, we need to support all of New Zealand’s existing water champions and bring them together. We need to provide and support river clean-up and planting events. We also need all of our riverside communities (Riverhoods!) to take ownership of their little stretch of river. And we need to encourage our communities to get back out and engage with and enjoy our rivers.
Our goal in year one is to set up systems and resources for Riverhood 1 in the first 110m stretch of the Avon River/Ōtākaro which can be replicated for the next 220m, 440m, and so on until, in 7 years, we have 14km of the most beautiful, flourishing urban river in the world. And the Avon River/Ōtākaro is just the beginning…
Riparian planting is the strategic design and planting of (mostly native) trees and shrubs on the banks of waterways to help prevent erosion and filter sediment and contaminants out of stormwater before it reaches our rivers. One of our fellow Water Champions, Di Lucas of Lucas Associates, has put together some fantastic resources to help you learn what to plant and where. We are currently creating a landscape design and an action plan to source plants and labour for the planting of our first Riverhood near Corfe Reserve at the head of the Avon River/Ōtākaro.