AWADS x Million Metres - A Partnership To Counteract Our Carbon Emissions
21 May 2019

AWADS x Million Metres - A Partnership To Counteract Our Carbon Emissions

Last month we excitedly announced our new partnership with Million Metres. An initiative of the Sustainable Business Network, Million Metres aims to raise the funds to restore 1 million metres of New Zealand's waterways with native plants and trees.


Million Metres helps local communities with fundraising, expertise and other support that helps their projects to be successful. Our passengers can now contribute to this waterway restoration initiative too, and help mitigate against the carbon emissions produced on our safaris at the same time.



The Facts About New Zealand's Waterways:


 (c) Scotty Sinton


  • 82% of rivers in farming areas and 94% of waterways in urban areas are unsafe for swimming
  • In farming areas, water pollution affects almost all rivers and aquifers, with high levels of nutrients, sediment and pathogens.
  • Urban waterways contain many of the same pollutants but typically at even higher levels and in addition contain other pollutants such as heavy metals.
  • 76% of freshwater fish species are now classified as ‘at risk’ of extinction.



Why plant trees?


Planting native plants and trees along the banks of our streams, rivers, lakes and wetlands is a great way to improve water quality and enhance native biodiversity.




(c) Matt Dowdle


Planting the banks of our waterways  has the following benefits:

  • Helping prevent stream bank erosion and therefore reducing sediment entering the water  
  • Helping stop phosphorus and industrial contaminants from entering the water
  • Shading the water which lowers water temperatures and improves habitat for native fish
  • Increasing habitat for native birds and insects
  • Taking carbon from the atmosphere


Why this partnership?


We have decided to partner with Million Metres as we believe that it is important to restore New Zealand's waterways as well as mitigate against our carbon emissions.


There's no denying it, the main operation of our company is held onboard a 20m catamaran which runs on fuel. We acknowledge that this causes carbon emissions which is contributing to the global carbon emission problem. Oceans and trees are two of the main carbon sinks around the world and whilst we work to help protect the oceans each and every day through our marine research programs, we would also like to help on the land.


One of the main ways we can do this is by playing our part in the larger picture of restoring New Zealand's waterways. By planting native trees and plants, not only does this help restore the local ecosystem but it also increases the amount of carbon being extracted from the's a win, win situation in our eyes!


What happens to your donation?


Where: We have chosen to support a local project in the Hauraki Gulf, the 'More Love For Rangihoua' project based on Waiheke Island. We previously supported a, now fully fundraised project, the 'Love Omaru Stream' project based in East Auckland. 


Minimum donation: $10 - this is the average cost of getting a tree in the ground. This includes the cost of the tree itself, planting and maintenance.  


How: We've created a couple of ways in which our passengers can opt to make their donation - either at time of booking or once they are on board the Dolphin Explorer.


When: Fundraising occurs year-round whilst the tree planting takes place over the winter months (when there is more moisture in the ground to help the new plants establish).