Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Waitaki River Allocation National Issue

Media Release
Monday April 11th, 2005.

Waitaki River Allocation National Issue

Solutions balancing economic and environmental interests on the Waitaki River have gone begging in the draft Waitaki catchment water allocation plan, says Waitaki District Mayor Alan McLay.

With just seven working days left to make submissions on the draft plan prepared by the Government-appointed Waitaki Allocation Board, he is concerned that the issue is not receiving the national attention it deserves.

“When Project Aqua was proposed, the entire country seemed to have a view. We are now faced with a draft plan that could have significant national implications, yet people outside the region don’t seem interested,” he said.

In its submission to the Board, the Waitaki District Council will highlight concerns about higher power prices resulting from less storage in the Waitaki Valley hydro lakes during winter as well as raise doubts over reliability of water supply for irrigation.

“The irony is that the plan is seen as only affecting the Waitaki. In reality it has the ability to affect all New Zealanders.

“Our hope is that the plan will safeguard and enhance the river’s sustainability. We’re also aware that the region’s future prosperity requires sustainable irrigation and power generation. All three are possible if water is shared wisely,” Mr McLay said.

The Council’s research indicated that the draft plan did not fully address the issue of sustainability and, lacked in depth analysis on the economic costs of its recommendations.

“Sharing water between irrigation and power generation would redress the balance. Any future consents for hydro power generation could help fund work so desperately needed to enhance the river.”

Mr McLay said two thirds of the Waitaki River was already modified and the remaining stretches of river needed more resources to improve sustainability, access, flow levels and general fish stocks.

Last month, the Waitaki District Council along with the Waimate, Timaru and Mackenzie District Councils, Otago Regional Council and Environment Canterbury wrote to Water Allocation Board chairperson Judge David Sheppard outlining their collective concerns over the draft plan.

They included concerns with the submission process, which only allows for appeal to the High Court on points of law, and confusion over the rationale behind minimum flow and lake storage levels. Their request for an extended submission period has been declined.

www.waitaki.govt.nz/events to view the Council’s drat submission
www.waitakiboard.mfe.govt.nz to download the draft allocation plan

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>


More Justice & Corrections

Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>


Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>


Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>


General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news