Cook Islands

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Pacific TA programme goes to the Cook Islands

Water storage

The Cook Islands Government is also working to strengthen the resilience of the outer islands to climate change.  In September 2013 Joanna Saywell, from Porirua City Council, worked with Cook Island representatives to identify the best approach to water storage for the outer island community of Atiu.

A United Nations Development Programme set aside funding to provide a 500,000-litre community water tank for the people of Atiu.  The community tank is needed to provide emergency water supplies to the islanders in times of drought.  The tank will be filled with rainwater collected off the various larger community buildings in the centre of the island.

CI Joanna Saywell

To read the full Cook Islands water storage report, click here.


Anne Lister, Gisborne District Council’s Waste Management Minimisation Officer, was among the first to share expertise with Pacific Island authorities, working alongside authorities in Rarotonga on development of waste education initiatives.

The visit came about after a group from the Cook Islands visited New Zealand on a fact finding mission, including Gisborne’s successful ‘Rethink’ Waste Education Centre. The team from the Cook Islands wanted advice on weather something similar would be suitable for Rarotonga.

Anne travelled to Rarotonga at the end of July 2013 and worked alongside her Cook Islands waste minimisation counterpart, finding out about the islands’ waste management system and visiting various sites.

Rarotonga has already got some excellent initiatives, including separation of waste at the weekly market, but the islands are isolated and a long way from markets for recyclables. The public are very committed to recycling and it was clear why a similar type of education centre to Gisborne’s could work there.

 CI baler for recyclables

To read the full Cook Isklands waste education report, click here.

LGNZ continues to work in the Cook Islands and is now working with Infrastructure Cook Islands on infrastructure.

Date updated: 23 June 2017