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

 


Water shortages, restrictions possible, NRC warns

Date: 25 January, 2013


Water shortages, restrictions possible, NRC warns

Northland’s district councils, major industries and consented water users are being urged to closely monitor their water use and prepare for possible shortages and restrictions unless there is significant rain over the next month or two.

Dale Hansen, Water Resources / Hydrology Programme Manager for the Northland Regional Council, says rain over the past several months has been significantly lower than usual in many parts of Northland.

“‘This month has also has been dry with low rainfall amounts, high temperatures and persistent westerly winds resulting in low soil moistures and reduced water resources.”

Mr Hansen says low soil moisture levels are likely to continue and river flows and ground water levels are expected to recede further throughout February and March if the region does not receive sufficient rain.

That puts a number of areas at risk of potential water shortages, including western areas of Kaipara from Kaihu to Pouto Point, the central areas south of Kaikohe and west of Whangarei, and Bream Bay and the southern Kaipara districts. (Moderate to significant rain which fell in the Far North and eastern parts of the region in late December meant things were not as serious there at this stage.)

Mr Hansen says realistically, many parts of Northland will need about 80 to 100mm of rain – effectively the average monthly rainfall for February - over the next few weeks to ease the situation and avoid water shortages and possible restrictions.

“The regional council is encouraging Northlanders in affected areas to conserve water wherever practical and prepare for possible water shortages and restrictions.”

With that in mind, the regional council has today (subs: Fri 25 January) begun sending out letters to about 400 water use resource consent holders urging them to closely monitor their water use.

Those consent holders range from private individuals taking several thousand litres a day to some major users taking hundreds of thousands of litres, including Northland’s district councils and major industries.

Mr Hansen says as well as urging the consent holders to conserve water, they’re also being asked to ensure their water use, stream flows, groundwater and lake levels are closely monitored in accordance with their consent conditions.

The regional council is also encouraging them to plan for shortages, including investigating alternative supplies or the possibility of water rationing, to ensure they meet consent conditions if things don’t improve over the coming weeks.

He says the regional council will continue to closely monitor rainfall, groundwater levels and stream flows around Northland and updated affected parties as required. This would include regular contact with district councils which were responsible for town water supplies.

Meanwhile, despite the regional council’s early call for restraint with water use, Mr Hansen there was no need for alarm at this stage and it was simply taking a sensible, precautionary approach.

“This is a heads-up; it’s about giving people the information they need to ensure they’re prepared early and thinking ahead.”

Mr Hansen says information on rainfall, river levels and flows can be found on the council’s website via: www.nrc.govt.nz/riversandrain

The website is automatically updated every two hours to provide the most up-to-date information.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Mt Albert Aftermath

Personality politics – Jacinda is great! Jacinda is not so great! – have dominated the coverage of the Labour Party’s fortunes this week...

Still, this is a relatively new and welcome problem for the centre-left. Labour has seemed so bereft of crossover talent for so long that it seems almost embarrassed by this latest development. More>>

 

Conservation: Central Govt Takes Over 1080 Regulation

“This new approach standardises the rules for using such poisons rather than the current system of different rules in different regions. This change will reduce costs and delays for operators, ensure consistent conditions throughout the country, reduce mistakes from misunderstanding rule differences and allow best practice approaches to be used." More>>

ALSO:

Election Entertainments: ACT Has Prison Plan, Greens Have Water Bill

Green Party launches Member’s Bill to protect our freshwater The Green Party has today launched a member’s bill that will keep water from underground sources, called aquifers, safe from pollution and contamination. More>>

ALSO:

2040 Target And Lower Standards: “Swimmable” Rivers Five Times More Likely To Make You Sick

Forest & Bird has condemned the government’s new water quality standards, warning New Zealanders that they lock in current levels of water pollution and allow for a 5-fold increase in the chance of getting sick from swimming in a river. More>>

ALSO:

Immigration: Clampdown On Rogue Employers Good First Step

The Human Trafficking Research Coalition is pleased at the new clampdown on rouge employers who exploit migrants announced by Minister Woodhouse this morning, and believes this is a step in the right direction. More>>

ALSO:

Mayor: 750 New Social And Affordable Homes For Wellington (Over A Decade)

The next stage of Wellington’s Housing Upgrade Programme will see at least 750 new units of social and affordable housing built over the next decade, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>

ALSO:

22/2: Christchurch Quake Memorial Unveiled

A city, a region, a nation and an international community impacted by the Canterbury Earthquakes will come together to mark the sixth anniversary of the deadly quake and dedicate Oi Manawa Canterbury Earthquake National Memorial. More>>

ALSO:


November Quakes:

Gordon Campbell: On The Mana-Maori Party Deal

If the self-interest involved wasn’t so blatant, the electorate deal between the Maori Party and Hone Harawira would be kind of poignant. It’s a bit like seeing the remaining members of Guns’n’Roses or the Eagles back on the road touring the nostalgia circuit… playing all the old hits of Maori unity and kaupapa Maori politics. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news