Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search


Research to uncover crucial knowledge on braided rivers

Media Release

2 October 2019

- for immediate release

Research to uncover crucial knowledge on braided rivers

A new five-year research programme is aiming to help regional councils manage their water resources and meet the Government’s freshwater quality standards by 2025.

Lincoln Agritech Ltd has been awarded almost $8m in MBIE funding for the project, which will provide the first accurate information about how much water is lost from braided rivers into groundwater.

“Braided rivers are unusual worldwide, but very important in New Zealand because of their provision of natural habitat, sources of agricultural and drinking water, and their recreational use,” said Programme Lead Scott Wilson, Lincoln Agritech Hydrogeologist.

“Regional councils currently set water limits and identify management plans for braided rivers without knowing how much water is lost, as rivers traverse their alluvial plans. The impact on groundwater recharge and river flow during dry periods is also unknown.”

The programme will deliver new knowledge regarding the Selwyn/Waikirikiri, Wairau and Ngaruroro rivers, along with models allowing councils to estimate water loss from any part of any braided river. It will also quantify the environmental and economic benefits of different river management strategies.

“Our research will help regional councils to enact policy with defensible freshwater quality and quantity standards to meet the Government’s National Policy Statement on Freshwater Management (NPS-FM) requirements by 2025,” he said. “It will also ensure that society’s competing needs for water can be met in the best way possible.

“Our new understanding will help manage the trade-off between environmental and economic benefits, ensuring that rivers can continue to have a role in agriculture, while providing high-quality drinking water, recreational activities and important native habitat.”

The multidisciplinary research team includes experts from Lincoln Agritech Ltd, as well as NIWA, Lincoln University and its Agribusiness and Economics Research Unit (AERU), University of Canterbury, Waterways Centre for Freshwater Management, Flinders University (Australia), Technische Universität Dresden (Germany), and Aarhus University (Denmark).

The team has the required range of skills in field data collection, hydrological modelling and cost benefit analysis to make this a major step forward in understanding New Zealand’s braided rivers.

Lincoln Agritech is wholly owned by Lincoln University, with an independent board of directors.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Crown Accounts: Treasury HYEFU Sees Deficit Then Rising Surpluses

An operating balance before gains and losses deficit of $0.9 billion is forecast in the current year, before returning to a small surplus in 2020/21 which then grows to reach $5.9 billion (1.5% of GDP) in 2023/24. More>>


Fuels Rushing In: Govt "Ready To Act" On Petrol Market Report

The Government will now take the Commerce Commission’s recommendations to Cabinet...
• A more transparent wholesale pricing regime • Greater contractual freedoms and fairer terms • Introducing an enforceable industry code of conduct • Improve transparency of premium grade fuel pricing... More>>


Reserve Bank Capital Review Decision: Increased Bank Capital Requirements

Governor Adrian Orr said the decisions to increase capital requirements are about making the banking system safer for all New Zealanders, and will ensure bank owners have a meaningful stake in their businesses. More>>


Aerospace: Christchurch Plan To Be NZ's Testbed

Christchurch aims to be at the centre of New Zealand’s burgeoning aerospace sector by 2025, according to the city’s aerospace strategic plan. More>>