Meridian Energy and the Department of Conservation (DOC) are pleased to announce that their partnership will continue for another three years, with Meridian as the National Partner of Kākāpō Recovery Programme (KRP).
Meridian has been National Partner of the Kākāpō Recovery Programme since 2016 and re-signing signals their commitment to the future of this endangered taonga species.
"Meridian is committed to helping protect our natural environment and we are proud to be raising awareness of the plight of kākāpō. I have seen first-hand the hard work of the dedicated team and had the privilege of getting up close to this amazing bird. Visiting Whenua Hou was a once in a lifetime experience and I hope that one day this can be a reality for other New Zealanders." Meridian CEO, Neal Barclay.
Kākāpō are large flightless green parrots found only in Aotearoa New Zealand. They only breed every 2-4yrs and are listed as a critically endangered species, with only 252 known birds after a successful 2022 breeding season where 55 chicks fledged.
“It’s great to see the hard work paying off and the kākāpō population reaching numbers not seen in decades. But we’re conscious that this growth and a successful 2022 breeding season brings a whole raft of new challenges for the recovery programme, like habitat and energy supplies in remote locations,” adds Neal.
Acting Director General for DOC, Henry Weston, says Meridian’s contribution to kākāpō conservation is substantial. “We are thrilled to continue our relationship with Meridian as National Partner of the Kākāpō Recovery Programme, supporting the work we do alongside Ngāi Tahu.
“Meridian’s impact often comes in the form of innovative solutions. They have played a significant role in upgrading kākāpō related infrastructure and power-systems, and greatly reduced our reliance on generators on the remote island sites. The ongoing partnership with Meridian will enable us to build on advancing kākāpō research including population health and improved breeding management techniques.”
Tāne Davis, Ngāi Tahu’s appointee to the Kākāpō Recovery Group, says kākāpō are treasured by Ngāi Tahu as a taonga species. “Kākāpō are part of our tribal identity and it’s wonderful to see that Meridian values them too. As the Kākāpō population grows, emphasis is now on pest free habitats for kākāpō.”
Kākāpō Recovery is a world class conservation programme which has been in place since 1995, working to bring back kākāpō (pronounced car-car-paw) from the brink of extinction from a low of just 51 birds in 1995.
The Kākāpō Recovery Programme supports breeding populations on four predator-free islands: Whenua Hou/Codfish Island, off Stewart Island; Pukenui/Anchor Island and Te Kākahu-o-Tamatea/Chalky Island - both in southwest Fiordland and Hauturu/Little Barrier Island in the Hauraki Gulf.
For more information on the partnership visit Meridian Energy: www.meridian.co.nz/kakapo
For more on DOC’s Kākāpō Recovery Programme visit http://kakaporecovery.org.nz/
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Meridian Energy Media Team
0800 948 843