OTOP updated water recommendations available

The community is encouraged to give feedback on updated water management recommendations for the Orari Temuka Opihi Pareora (OTOP) water zone until 10 October.

The updated recommendations focus on two key topics: river flow and allocation recommendations (including minimum flows) for the Opihi and Temuka River catchments; and nutrient management regimes for high nitrate concentration areas in Fairlie Basin, Rangitata Orton and Levels Plains.

The recommendations have been made by the OTOP Water Zone Committee, after reviewing and testing additional technical information and, for the flow allocations, considering proposals from two dedicated working groups.  They can be found here or by getting in touch with Environment Canterbury.

OTOP Chair, Hamish McFarlane, says the additional time taken to work on these parts of the Draft Zone Implementation Programme Addendum was well spent.

“It’s been a balancing act – creating recommendations that will drive positive environmental change but in a sustainable way for our whānau, businesses and the environment.  The extra time was really necessary to allow the Water Zone Committee to access and test the information we needed to put forward our recommendations,” he said.

Now it’s the community’s turn to consider the specific recommendations that have been updated before the Zone Committee makes final recommendations to Councils later this year.  After that, a sub-regional plan will be written, which will go through a formal public consultation process in 2019. 

Feedback on the updated recommendations can be given online, in writing, by phone or email.  To view the recommendations visit haveyoursay.ecan.govt.nz or visit the Timaru office.

Those who have already given feedback on the draft ZIPA are also greatly appreciated.

“Thanks to everyone who has been in touch with us already.  Those who left notes at the earlier drop-ins, have sent us emails or talked to us, and those that provided some really substantial feedback to us as well, we are really grateful for your input,” says Hamish.

The Orari Temuka Opihi Pareora Water Zone Committee is a community led committee supported by councils.

Community drop-in sessions

Monday 8 October at West End Hall in Timaru from 6.30-7.30pm.

Get in touch

Zone Facilitator, Barb Gilchrist on 027 568 3297 or barb.gilchrist@ecan.govt.nz.