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New irrigation investments for Canterbury

Hon Nathan Guy

Minister for Primary Industries


18 May 2016


New irrigation investments for Canterbury

Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy has welcomed three new investments totalling $7.85 million into irrigation projects in Canterbury from the Ministry for Primary Industries’ Irrigation Acceleration Fund (IAF).

“These projects are a real boost to the Canterbury regional economy. A reliable source of water gives farmers certainty and options to invest in such as arable, intensive pastoral, dairy support or horticulture.”

The projects receiving funding are:

· Central Plains Water: $6.64 million

· Sheffield Water Scheme: $898,000

· Hinds Managed Aquifer Recharge Pilot Study: $312,000

“The Central Plains Water funding will help develop Stage 2 of this project to service a further 25,000 hectares, and will also reduce pressure on groundwater and improve the water quality in Lake Ellesmere.

“The Sheffield Water Scheme will develop a storage dam providing irrigation supply to 3,500 hectares in the Selwyn district.

“The Hinds project near Ashburton is a pilot to test the feasibility of recharging groundwater sources to help boost lowland streams and reduce nitrate levels. If successful, this will help support 30,000 hectares of irrigated land in the area.

“These projects are about unlocking the economic potential of agriculture in the region in a sustainable way. The funding helps support the development of these irrigation proposals to the stage where they are investment ready.”

“A recent report by NZIER found that irrigation contributes $2.2 billion to the national economy and this has the potential to increase further.

“Importantly, any change in farming practises that occur as a result of this will need to meet existing environmental standards.

ends

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