The Rimurimu Project 2020

These forests have helped our oceans thrive. Now they need our help.

Imagine the blue-belt of Wellington sustaining a healthy and vibrant Ocean Forest, able to absorb more carbon than trees, improving water quality and providing habitat for thousands of marine creatures.
The Rimurimu Project invites you to join us in restoring these vital seaweed forests across Te Upoko-o-te-Ika-a-Maui (the head of the fish of Maui).

We think Wellington is the perfect place to lead innovation and sustainable restoration.
Join us (and many others) on this journey!

Seaweed (rimurimu) provides a wealth of ecosystem services and opportunities:

  • Enhances biodiversity by maintaining vital food webs and habitat.
  • Improving water quality
  • Rebuilding marine ecosystems
  • Providing innovative & traditional solutions to many modern day challenges including food, textiles, materials and medicines.
  • Fighting climate change by absorbing carbon (and a potential tool for long-term carbon sequestration)

 

Seaweed forest – pictured at the Kapiti Island Marine Reserve by Lorna Doogan

Community Events

We launched LOVE RIMURIMU project with our Free Community Snorkel Day Events, inviting community to explore the local biodiversity and seaweed forests. These will take place across Wellington this summer (check out our Events page).

We’ll also be co-hosting some night events (above the waves) at locations across Wellington with FISHHOOK come autumn time. Stay tuned!

 

Seaweed forest – pictured at the Kapiti Island Marine Reserve by Lorna Doogan

Education

The Mountains To Sea Wellington team is working with students from across Wellington exploring the diversity of our local seaweeds, their role in the oceans and their connection with climate change.

The education programme has been funded through Curious Minds  and is known as The Rimurimu Project. It’s intended that these young people will also be piloting restoration in Wellington with support from scientists, iwi and local government, pending approval and ensuring best practice. They will then go on to share their learning with others in the community.

The schools involved in The Rimurimu Project are Mana College, Scots College, Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Ngā Mokopuna and Koraunui School.

This project is widely supported with leading experts from the Department of Conservation, Experiencing Marine Reserves, Victoria University, NIWA, Wellington Underwater club and many others.

First class session

In the first class session the students were introduced to the ins and outs of Seaweed. A brief lecture on structure and importance of their ecosystems and habitats, and the three different groups of seaweed; Browns, Greens and Reds. Each student received their own personal journal to record their notes, drawings and activities in. The MTSW team also brought a couple different types of seaweed for the students to begin familiarising themselves with.

Ngā Mokopuna meets with experts

Students from Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Ngā Mokopuna were incredibly lucky to have seven seaweed experts come and present to them in their first class session. These seven fantastic experts shared an amazing wealth of knowledge with the students, from history and uses, to even sharing some pickled Neptunes Necklace on cheese and crackers.

What comes next?

We want to see our marine environment thrive. To achieve this outcome active restoration and management in the marine environment is needed.

OUR VISION: “Wellington harbour and the blue belt has a flourishing ocean forest, cared for by our local communities. Our seaweed forests are valued for their beauty and ecosystem services – absorbing carbon, steadily improving water quality and as a home to an increasing abundance of marine life”

If you would like to get involved please follow us on Facebook and reach out to us at info@mtsw.org.nz