Environment Canterbury welcomes LAWA river water quality data

At Environment Canterbury, we welcome the latest river water quality data from Land, Air, Water Aotearoa (LAWA).

Environment Canterbury Chair Jenny Hughey said it was important to reflect on the state of all Canterbury rivers and streams, and particularly our iconic braided rivers.

Canterbury not alone in facing river water quality challenges

“The LAWA river water quality national picture summary from 2010 to 2019 shows a similar result for Canterbury as for the rest of the country,” Chair Hughey said.

“It’s a mixed bag illustrating little change over the last few years. One thing is clear however – the more intensive the land use, the poorer the water quality.

“This is the challenge we’ve been addressing here for several years, primarily via the Canterbury Water Management Strategy. Much has been done but we acknowledge there is more to do.

Measures underway to improve river health 

“In rural areas, we have auditable farm environment plans, nutrient limits and stock exclusion rules, all of which are now focused on by the Government’s Essential Freshwater package including the important concept of Te Mana o te Wai (the health of the waterway comes first)," Chair Hughey said.

“In both urban and rural environments we’re seeing wonderful restoration activity being undertaken by our Water Zone Committees, farmers and a variety of community groups working together towards common goals.”

Chair Hughey said that if everyone got involved in on-the-ground actions to improve water quality in their local area, whether urban or rural, the impact could be huge.

“Every small step we take will improve our rivers and streams. We all need to step up and do our bit,” she said.

For more information, head to the LAWA website, email us or phone the media team on 027 221 5259.