6th generation Dunedinite, Otago University Graduate - BSc Hons (aquatic ecology).
Formerly a water quality scientist, I am now a project coordinator with the NZ Landcare Trust. In this role I work with diverse rural communities addressing crucial water sustainability issues. I have six years experience as an Otago Regional Councillor and have chaired the Environment and Science Committee and various consent hearings. Our Regional Council has an important role in protecting our ability to live healthy, happy lives in our diverse Otago landscape. I have a strong belief in community-driven solutions to the challenging issues we face. I am proud to live in Dunedin and seek your support for a third term. I’d like to contribute especially, to effective rural and urban water quality and quantity policy implementation and experience in facilitating community-driven leadership. I believe I can offer both energy and experience to this role.
Top 5 Issues
- I strongly believe in community-driven solutions to resource management issues. Trusting ourselves to make the right decision is important - if we can't get it right together as a community, who will get it right?
- The Otago Regional Council has embarked on a review of its water plan addressing both water quality and water quantity issues. As a water quality scientist and facilitator of community processes for water reosurce management, I beleive I can offer a lot as we pave the way for sustainable future-focussed solutions.
- RMA hearing processes must be well run by experienced commissioners. The decisions made at hearings have large impacts on our society. Poorly executed hearings cost applicants, submitters, ratepayers and the environment. I have 6 years experience as a hearings commissioner, am a trained chairperson in this field and have a technical background in water management.
- The Otago Regional Council needs to address its own building issues during the upcoming term. I voted to refer the issue back for further public consultation after hearing your thoughts last year. I look forward to hearing more from the community as the Council addresses this important issue.
- I am a strong supporter of practical solutions for air quality in Otago. I strongly support the Otago Regional Council's Clean Heat scheme in our air zone 1 communities (which see low emmission heating devices installed through an assistance programme). I would like to see us continuing to commit to clean healthy air - Otago is a stunning place to live and I would like our air quality to be something we can be proud of.
I am proud to call Otago home. I cannot imagine ever moving. I love our coast and escape when I can to our wee 1890's cottage at Kakanui. We love hunting and gathering - seafishing, wild harvesting and growing our own fruit and veges.
I was born in Dunedin attended Caversham, Opoho, Dunedin North intermediate and Otago Girls' High Schools. Although I have lived in Dunedin most of my life, I spent most of my holidays on my grandparents and aunties/uncles' farms around Otago. At school I represented Otago in 3 sports (netball, touch and athletics). I love the outdoors and it followed that I went on to study ecology at Otago University where I gained a first class honours degree in Science. I was offered a PhD scholarship but decided to use my science background to work with communities instead. I have done this as a water quality scientist and for the last 9 years as a community facilitator working with rural people on water issues.
I have been humbled to represent you on the Otago Regional Council for the past 6 years. I value that resource management brings together a strong understanding of our environment and an affinity for people and their aspirations.
Authorised by Gretchen Robertson of Hunt St, Dunedin
Questions answered by Gretchen Robertson
Gretchen Robertson's Reply
Results - Final
- Louise Croot
- Gretchen Robertson
- Michael Deaker
- Bryan Scott
- Sam Neill
- Trevor Kempton
- Edward Ellison
- Alan McDonald