There was joy tempered by the knowledge of the work that lay ahead when Waikato Tainui signed a revised deed of settlement covering the Waikato River.
Ngati Maniapoto kaumatua Tom Roa, says there was a clear sense of history at the Hopuhopu ceremony on Thursday.
He told Waatea News the new Waikato River Authority will draw from both tikanga Maori and tikanga Pakeha. He said the future "lies with our young scientists and lawyers working to ensure the vitality of the river".
The agency will have $210 million to spend on a river clean-up.