Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


‘Water Trading’ Next Step for New Zealand?

28 September 2005

‘Water Trading’ Next Step for New Zealand NZ Ignores Overseas Lessons at its Cost

Despite New Zealand’s seemingly abundant supply of fresh water, conflict over water use and access will inevitably lead to a need for a viable water trading scheme. That’s the view of Nick Morris, head of Australia’s largest economic consultancy, ACIL Tasman Ltd Pty, and a former lead adviser to the United Kingdom’s 1980s water privatisation programmes.

Speaking at the New Zealand Water and Wastes Association EnviroNZ05- Water Matters conference in Auckland today, Mr Morris says experience from around the world shows that well established, nationally consistent, water trading schemes have the potential to create major benefits both from an economic as well as an environmental perspective.

“The prime rationale behind any water market is to make more efficient use of what is a limited resource,” says Mr Morris.

“In Australia, where water trading has existed since 1994, there is ample evidence to show that this has occurred with the state of New South Wales alone benefiting by an estimated $60 to $100 million per annum because of water trading,” he says.

This is because water trading effectively moves water usage away from lower value uses such as sheep and cattle grazing to higher value uses such as permanent pasture irrigation and horticulture.

Mr Morris says that the Australian experience also points to environmental benefits – but only if adequate allocations for environmental uses are made by regulators prior to trading for other uses.

“There was initial scepticism from environmental groups about trading water as a commodity but it is now generally accepted that the system leads to lower water cost and a greater allocation for the environment,” he says.

“New Zealand has a major opportunity to learn from the Australian experience – which is generally accepted as being a world-leading model for water trading.

“Other systems such as those existing in Chile and California are either seen as over regulated or too open to influence from market forces.”

Mr Morris says the reforms necessary to create a viable water trading scheme require a fundamental paradigm shift from an engineering, supply-side and central allocation approach to one that uses pricing signals to assist with the efficient and sustainable allocation of water.

“While water reforms in other countries have by no means been perfect, and many issues remain to be tackled, for New Zealand to ignore lessons learned when developing its own water policy will come at significant cost,” says Mr Morris.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Mayor of Auckland: Alert Level Change Welcome News

Mayor Phil Goff says the government’s decision to move Auckland to Level 2 from 6am on Sunday will be welcome news for all Aucklanders.
“Moving strongly and quickly to contain this outbreak has once again proved effective in stopping the spread of community transmission and I thank all the Aucklanders who have followed the rules of Level 3 over the past week,” he says... More>>


Earthquakes: Tsunami Activity – Cancelled

The National Advisory issued at 2:48pm following this morning's earthquakes near the KERMADEC ISLANDS REGION is cancelled.
The advice from GNS Science, based on ocean observations, is that the Beach and Marine threat has now passed for all areas... More>>

Joint Press Release: Dirty PR Exposed In Whale Oil Defamation Trial

Three public health advocates are relieved that their long-standing Whale Oil defamation trial against Cameron Slater, Carrick Graham, Katherine Rich and the Food and Grocery Council has finally concluded and they are pleased that the truth has come out... More>>


Government: Next Stage Of COVID-19 Support For Business And Workers

The Government has confirmed details of COVID-19 support for business and workers following the increased alert levels due to a resurgence of the virus over the weekend... More>>


Government: Balanced Economic Approach Reflected In Crown Accounts

New Zealand’s economic recovery has again been reflected in the Government’s books, which are in better shape than expected.
The Crown accounts for the seven months to the end of January 2021 were better than forecast in the Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU)... More>>

Covid-19: Auckland Back To Alert Level Three After One New Community Case Revealed

Auckland will move to alert level three for a week at 6am tomorrow morning after two new Covid-19 community cases announced this evening could not be directly linked to earlier cases, the Prime Minister has confirmed.
The rest of the country will move to level two.... More>>

NZ Initiative: New Report Highlights How Our Housing Crisis Could Worsen If We Don’t Act Now

If New Zealand politicians thought the housing crisis in 2020 was bad, the worst is yet to come, warns a new report by The New Zealand Initiative. In The Need to Build: The demographic drivers of housing demand , Research Assistant Leonard Hong ... More>>

Parliament: Kiwi MPs Among The “Most Educated In The World”

New analysis of MP qualifications reveals New Zealand’s Parliament is one of the most educated and highest qualified in the world, and significantly more educated than Australia’s. The research, by Mark Blackham of BlacklandPR and Geoffrey Miller ... More>>




InfoPages News Channels