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In 2020, the overuse, degradation, and management of natural resources was a key concern of residents of Ōwhango, and this remained a concern in 2023.

"The 42 Traverse that goes through the bush on the other side of the river has had a massive landslide and DOC decided not to fix up that part of the road and they've put in a different track which means that the four wheelers can no longer use it which is fantastic because they just damaged it. It's now a place you have to carry your pushbike and you can't take a four-wheeler over it. We've got kiwi out there. Blue duck out there."
"I’m interested in preserving what we have and recreating some of the habitat we used to have here. Most of the people who would come here come here because it's a nice place to stay close to the mountains, or because they want to go trout fishing or because it's their family's holiday home for generations. They come here."
"The thing is if we lose all those vehicles going through, who is going to maintain the track. The 42 Traverse. Most of that isn't actually properly maintained by DOC or anything. It was just vehicles going through clearing the edges by hitting them basically. That was keeping it as a track."
"Or if you put up something to protect access to the Ohinetonga Reserve they just chainsaw through it so they can ride their motorbikes through it."

Residents remained perturbed that a slip on a track which was also raised in 2020 had not been remedied by DOC:

"Out here you've got some absolutely amazing bush. You've got DOC who won't maintain the track where that slip had come in."

There were also concerns that possums were returning the area which was considered previously to be relatively unencumbered by a large possum population.

"We've got lots of, we're starting to get possums back in the area which we didn't used to have so much of a problem within the area. I don’t know why the possums are coming here. "

In terms of climate and weather patterns:

“This is the worst summer we’ve seen on the farm. We’ll be drying cows off two months early. There are droughts most years so it’s not an increase because it’s been and gone and been and gone. We had a good spring and a mild winter so came into the season very well.”

Residents of Ōwhango were concerned about drinking water quality, communications for boil water notices, and river water quality:

"We get a lot of boil water notices. Whenever there is a heavy rain. It's hard to know when. I think they usually put a notice up where the community mailboxes are, but we don't have a mailbox. The Council puts a notice on Facebook I think, but I don't always notice that."
"You’d have to follow that page to know. So you don’t know until you walk past and see there’s a tanker there, and so oh, there must be a bit of a problem with the water supply."
"There’s a problem with the communication but I don’t know how you would do that efficiently."
"The Kakahi Stream. There’s been a catchment group formed in this area and this is farmers doing this. They’re interested in monitoring the river to see what can be done to improve the water quality and they’re concerns are about obviously the environment, but also because they’ve been put under so much pressure to move back from waterways, they want to demonstrate that it’s not them but the urbanites who are damaging the water. We’ve got a classic example of pig farming right down into the water. That’s an urban issue. So water is a big issue."
"Whakapapa, there was, there is definitely... if (redacted) was here he would tell you there's something being dumped upstream in the Whakapapa because there are huge foams that come down from time to time. And they accumulate in fishing holes. He doesn't know what it is. "

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