Locals are running out of time to have their say on the draft Kaikoura Zone Implementation Programme (ZIP) for water management.
Last week, the Kaikoura Zone Committee hosted two community meetings in Kaikoura and Oaro to get feedback from locals. A meeting was also held in Kekerengu in late July.
Zone committee Chair Derrick Millton said the committee was pleased with the level of engagement from the local community.
“We were very happy with how engaged participants were at each of our community meetings and the discussions we had with key stakeholder groups were also invaluable.
“The role of the zone committee is to work with the local community to develop water management solutions that will benefit our region for generations to come.
“We have worked closely with our community to develop our draft ZIP and balance the competing demands and varying viewpoints relating to water.
“We are keen to receive a diverse range of feedback as possible to ensure our recommendations reflect the community’s aspirations before the feedback period closes in early September,” he said.
Some of the key points raised at the community meetings included the impact of herbicides on local waterways, improving local sewage systems, protecting local drinking water supplies, and managing land use.
A series of stakeholder meetings were also held with a number of groups including more than 50 members of federated farmers, representatives from local Rūnanga, Lions, and Kaikoura High School.
“The zone committee was particularly pleased with the interest shown by the local High School. Many of the decisions the community is making now will affect our children and their children so it is important they are involved in the process.
“We understand the students intend to submit formal feedback on the draft ZIP and we look forward to seeing what they like and don’t like about the recommendations and whether there are other things they think should be included,” said Derrick Millton.
Each of the ten zone committees around Canterbury is tasked with developing a ZIP to achieve the goals and targets set out in the Canterbury Water Management Strategy (CWMS).
The vision of the CWMS is to enable future generations the greatest social, economic, recreational, cultural benefits from our water resources within a sustainable framework.
The Kaikoura Zone Committee finalised its draft ZIP in June after meeting with stakeholders and community members earlier in the year to get feedback on its priorities for water management.
The committee’s priorities for water management are:
Once finalised, the ZIP will be submitted to Environment Canterbury and the Kaikoura District Council to form the basis for the design and realignment of work programmes and for drafting plan provisions.
The feedback period closes on 3 September, 2012. Community members can submit feedback online.
The Kaikoura Zone Committee was launched in 15 July 2011 as a joint committee of Environment Canterbury and the Kaikoura District Council. It includes representatives from council, Rūnanga, and the community.
Since forming the committee has had ten public meetings, a number of workshops and field trips, and engaged with numerous community groups and stakeholders to bring it up-to-speed on water management issues in the zone.
The next zone committee meeting is on 26 September and it is open to the public. Meeting details will be made available on the Kaikoura Zone Committee page.