The Kaikoura Zone Implementation Programme – part of the collaborative Canterbury Water Management Strategy – has been received by the Environment Canterbury Council at its meeting on Thursday November 1.
The underlying philosophy of the Strategy is that communities – via water management zone committees – are best placed to make decisions on local water management.
“The Kaikoura Zone Implementation Programme represents the consensus reached by committee members on the local actions needed to improve water management in the zone,” said Environment Canterbury Commissioner and Kaikoura Zone Committee member David Bedford.
The Kaikoura Zone Implementation Programme has been endorsed by the Environment Canterbury Council as the basis for the design and realignment of work programmes.
“The recommendations will give effect to the vision and principles of the CWMS in the Kaikoura zone,” said David Bedford.
Kaikoura Zone Committee Chair Derrick Millton said the committee had worked collaboratively with stakeholders and community members to develop recommendations for water management that are acceptable to a wide range of interests.
The Kaikoura programme for water management is the ninth of 11 programmes to be formally received by Environment Canterbury. The Kaikoura District Council is expected to receive the ZIP at its council meeting in November.
Since its establishment in July 2011, the zone committee has held 15 formal meetings, a number of workshops, and members have gone on a series of field trips to get a practical sense of water management requirements in the zone.
The committee released its draft ZIP in August 2012 and held community and stakeholder meetings to gather feedback from people across the zone.
The committee received 29 written responses on its ZIP, and in general, the feedback was both constructive and supportive.
“How water is used is crucial to the future of the region,” said Derrick Millton.
“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.
“The completion of the Kaikoura Zone’s first programme for water management is vital to ensuring the region’s water is managed effectively.
“As a committee we have a wide diversity of experience and this means when we came to putting detail on paper all reasonable endeavour was made to capture a diverse range of opinions in the ZIP.
“The feedback we got from people at the community meetings was also important as it ensured a wide-range of opinion was canvassed and then reflected in the final version of the ZIP.”
Of the 64 recommendations made in the ZIP, Environment Canterbury is leading or involved in 51 of them.
More than one-third of the recommendations relate to scientific investigations and monitoring to provide more information for planning and future projects.
A similar number or recommendations focus on action-on-the ground including working with landowners on catchment management, wetland protection, biodiversity enhancement, nutrient management, as well as water use efficiency.
The ZIP has taken a ‘whole of waterways’ approach to integrate water management from the mountains to the sea - ki uta ki tai.
“As guardians of the resource we want to ensure the water of the Kaikoura zone enhances the abundance and quality of life,” said Derrick Millton.
The collaborative approach that has been used in the development of the CWMS and by the Zone Committee in developing the ZIP is now being carried through to the implementation of the recommendations.
The five priority topics in the ZIP
- Drinking water supply and quality;
- Protecting our (biodiversity) treasures;
- Maintaining and improving water, nutrient and effluent management;
- Taking an integrated approach to improving the health of Kaikoura’s waterways and wetlands while maintaining flood protection, encouraging prosperous farming, and supporting a wide range of cultural, recreational, and conservation values;
- Manage freedom camping, visitor and infrastructure impacts on waterways.
A final version of the Kaikoura ZIP is available