The quality and quantity of drinking water supplies depends on the management of point sources and non-point sources of contaminants in drinking water supply catchments and aquifers, land-use in the catchment or recharge area and on the treatment provided by the territorial authority.
Under the Canterbury Water Management Strategy (CWMS), goals were set to help make a difference to our environment and how natural resources are managed. Environment Canterbury reports on progress on behalf of CWMS partners.
Here's how things are progressing against 2020 goals. View information on:
- Central Government’s Three Waters Review has resulted in regulatory reform and more support for three waters infrastructure. A new drinking water regulator, Taumata Arowai, was established in 2021.
- In August 2020, Government announced post-COVID funding for councils to invest in improving three waters infrastructure.
- Environment Canterbury produces an annual report outlining the risk of nitrate concentrations in groundwater. Maps for each zone can be found on the Community and Public Health website.
- Land, Air, Water Aotearoa (LAWA) uses groundwater quality indicators monitored by regional councils and unitary authorities to show state and trend analysis of nitrate concentration.
- Environment Canterbury will continue to monitor groundwater quality and investigate emerging contaminants, sharing this data with territorial authorities.
- Christchurch City Council will continue the establishment of shallow groundwater monitoring and will share data with Environment Canterbury.
- Environment Canterbury will improve compliance requirements under new national regulations and continue regular community and industry education and behaviour change campaigns to protect drinking water quality.
- The current operational delivery of three waters infrastructure is likely to change over the next few years as a result of Central Government’s Three Waters Review.
- Environment Canterbury will implement a drinking water source protection work programme, giving effect to requirements of Taumata Arowai, the National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management (NPS-FM) and the National Environmental Standards for Freshwater (NES-F).
- There are 7,400 farms in Canterbury (based on Statistics New Zealand Agricultural Production stats: June 2017) of which 1,400 require a land use consent and 1,500 have an authorisation to farm as they are managed by collectives (irrigation schemes and farming enterprises) holding a consent. The remaining 4,500 farms operate under Permitted Activity status because their activities are of a lower environmental risk.
- In the 2019-20 year, 1,097 Farm Environmental Plan audits were conducted, of which 93% achieved an A or B audit grade. An A grade means the farm is compliant and achieving GMP, while a B grade means the farm is compliant and on track to achieve GMP by the next audit, due to take place two years later.
- Environment Canterbury will continue to implement work programmes to support GMP implementation.