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Partnering with Ngāi Tahu – freshwater

Last updated: 01 November 2023
Reporting frequency: Quarterly
Portfolio: Water and land

We will continue to partner with Ngāi Tahu and engage with communities to implement the Government’s Essential Freshwater package, including Te Mana o te Wai, and improve freshwater outcomes.

We will protect and restore priority aquatic ecosystems and habitats and create opportunities for mahinga kai through regulation and other initiatives to improve water quality and flow.

We are leading a shared regional commitment through the Canterbury Water Management Strategy (CWMS) – strengthening collaborative arrangements with Papatipu Rūnanga, Zone Committees, community and key organisations, including through joint work programmes.

How are we tracking on our Levels of Service?

Level of Service 1: Facilitate the Canterbury Water Management Strategy zone and regional committees to support achievement of the 2025 goals, in partnership with Ngāi Tahu and the Canterbury region’s city and district councils.

To achieve this Level of Service, we will provide opportunities for community engagement through Zone and Regional Committee actions and we will report on progress, including providing regular updates to the Canterbury Mayoral Forum (the governance group) on matters of interest to that group. 

How are we doing: There were 20 water zone committee meetings and workshop in the first quarter. The Regional Committee, which has not met for some time, was formally discharged. The zone committee have all reviewed and updated their Action Plans. You can find out more about the committees and their work programmes, including links to their action plans for the three-year term to June 2024.

We report on progress on our website, and to the Mayoral Forum (see meeting papers). 

On track
Level of Service 4: Partner with Papatipu Rūnanga and engage with the community to inform amendments to the regulatory framework (to give effect to Central Government's Essential Freshwater package, achieving Te Mana o te Wai).

To achieve this Level of Service, we will notify a land and water regulatory framework that provides for a Ngāi Tahu and community vision when giving effect to the Government’s Essential Freshwater package across the region

How are we doing: Reviewing the Land and Water Regional Plan is part of developing an integrated planning framework. It has taken longer than anticipated to develop governance arrangements and gather the information we need on the current state of Canterbury, pushing out some of the timeframes.  
We have collated a large number of data sets and information to build a common understanding of the current state of the region's environment.

For quarter one, we commenced engagement with the community to seek feedback on their vision for Canterbury. 

On track
Level of Service 5: Partner with Papatipu Rūnanga and engage with the community to implement Central Government's Essential Freshwater package to improve freshwater outcomes.

To achieve this Level of Service, we will develop and implement a programme in partnership with Papatipu Rūnanga to deliver Te Mana o te Wai.

How are we doing: The Kaitiakitanga Mahinga Kai programme of work involves working with ngā Papatipu Rūnanga to identify sites they would like to see actively restored and/or protected. The overall Kaitiakitanga Mahinga Kai programme is gaining momentum and is on track, with a number of completed projects that demonstrate value. Four projects have been funded this quarter, including an environmental training project to enable rūnanga to undertake environmental work with one of their awa.

On track

How are we doing on our key initiatives?

Recent highlights and updates


by Kaikōura and Hurunui Waiau Uwha zone delivery lead Marco Cataloni

Kaikōura and Hurunui Waiau Uwha zone delivery lead Marco Cataloni discusses awesome local projects in his latest column.

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