CIWEM opened a formal New Zealand branch in autumn 2020, having had a membership presence in the country for some years, writes Jivir Viyakesparan. CIWEM Aotearoa branch aims to help New Zealanders and UK expats in the water and environmental industries to build and continue professional relationships with CIWEM.
Dave Ward formed a steering committe in 2004, when he joined the ICE New Zealand branch committee. He saw how active the New Zealand branch was and spotted an opportunity to grow CIWEM's presence in New Zealand.
Ward contacted Paul Horton, who was then at CIWEM headquarters, and suggested establishing a New Zealand branch. CIWEM gave him the mandate to establish a committee and organise member activities, registration pathways and grow the membership base, but we weren’t yet a branch.
When Peter Brooks came on board and took over from Ward, he kept conversations going with CIWEM head office and gathered more support from CIWEM members in New Zealand.
The evolution of the steering group members over the last two years means we now have representation across all major cities. Brooks becoming a trustee board member has really made CIWEM Aotearoa what it is today. I am now ambassador for New Zealand and Australia for CIWEM, managing communication and support from head office.
Last year saw New Zealand become an official CIWEM branch with a formal committee. Our current chair is Tom Porter.
The branch meets once a month and aims to connect members with local events around the country. It also helps them learn more about the recent memorandum of understanding with local organisations such as Water New Zealand.
This offers up opportunities for chartership to a much broader range of professionals, compared to other industry organisations, including C.Eng, CSci, C.WEM, and C.Env.
Being connected to like-minded professionals enables members to keep in touch with the latest developments in the industry and to share their knowledge and experience with others.
Coming up in 2021 CIWEM Aotearoa will hold the Waikato Panel Discussion, A climate and ecological emergency, in August and our second AGM in September.
This article introduces the CIWEM Aotearoa branch committee members. We asked each of them what challenges and opportunities lie ahead for New Zealand in water and environmental management, sustainability and climate change.
MEET THE TEAM
This article originally appeared in the July/August 2021 issue of The Environment. For all branch enquiries please email email@example.com.
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