A report card on how well the environment is doing is due this year and Horizons Regional Council is adopting a wait-and-see attitude.
It has been six years since Horizons' last state of the environment report and there is hope that the next one will show an improvement in the water quality in the region.
The last report in 2006 showed degradation of the rivers which included increases in siltation.
The regional council's sustainable land use initiative was put in place to address those issues and this year's report should show whether it is working.
Freshwater and science manager Dr Jon Royguard wouldn't be drawn on whether things were better or worse with the region's rivers and streams.
Evidence from the 2006 report was also used to strengthen the regional council's bid for a $5.2 million cash injection from central government's freshwater cleanup fund.
"This information can be used for applications to central government for funding, so this will be coming out in time to be able to apply for more funding if there is an opportunity to," Dr Royguard said.
A lot of the information was already at hand for Horizons and the council had a reasonably good idea what was happening in the environment, he said. "There was a period of slide and then it stabilised for a while. This report will give people a good idea of where we are at."
The data relating to river siltation would show how well the multimillion-dollar sustainable programme was working but Dr Royguard said people had to be mindful that progress would take time.
"There is a time lag as it's still in its infancy. But we will be able to do some modelling to show what we will be expecting in the future.
"We are dealing with nature so it's not always precise."
- © Fairfax NZ News
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