This planning process will set nutrient, flow and allocation limits for the Selwyn Waihora catchment in partnership with the Selwyn Waihora Zone Committee and stakeholder Focus Groups. These limits will be included in a sub-regional chapter of the Land and Water Regional Plan currently under development.
Setting limits is a key area of work in the Selwyn Waihora Zone Implementation Programme (ZIP) produced under the Canterbury Water Management Strategy (CWMS). View more information on the ZIP here.
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You can also contact the coordinators of the focus groups.
The process for setting nutrient, flow and allocation limits have been carried out separately to date. However, water quality should not be considered in isolation from water quantity issues. An integrated approach is proposed which will determine the outcomes sought by the community then collaboratively determine the appropriate limits for the water resources in the catchment.
The development of a water quality and quantity regime is based on the Land Use Water Quality (LUWQ) Preferred Approach. This has a number of elements including stakeholder engagement, scenario development, and biophysical, social, cultural, economic and farm systems analysis. This is followed by a process to evaluate the results and recommend limits, then policy development.
Below are the key stages involved in collaboratively developing limits to help deliver the priority outcomes and recommended actions in the Zone Implementation Programme (ZIP).
This step involves developing plausible futures for land use, development and water storage in the catchment that align with the outcomes and direction set by the Zone Committee in its ZIP. Scenarios and modelling assumptions must be credible and resonate with the Zone Committee and community to avoid modelling the wrong things.
The scenarios are run through land use, groundwater, surface water and lake models to produce nutrient concentrations, loads and flows. An analysis across biophysical, social, cultural, economic and on-farm impacts will be undertaken and presented to the stakeholder Focus Groups and Zone Committee to inform discussions.
A structured evaluation of the scenarios, implications and risks is undertaken with a range of stakeholder Focus Groups, under the leadership of the Zone Committee. The information that is derived from these deliberations will inform Zone Committee discussions and enable the Zone Committee to make a recommendation on limits and mechanisms to achieve these limits to Environment Canterbury.
This stage requires drafting objectives, policies and rules including limits for managing water quality, flows and allocation that support delivery of the ZIP.
The Selwyn-Te Waihora catchment roughly covers the area bound by the Waimakariri River in the north, the Rakaia River in the south, the Big Ben Range in the West and Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere in the east.
The catchment is hydrologically diverse. It is characterised by central plains, hill fed rivers, groundwater zones, spring-fed streams, a complex system of drains, and Te Waihora, a large barrier-breach built coastal lagoon classified as a wetland of international significance and highly prized by Ngai Tahu. The Rakaia/Selwyn and Selwyn/Waimakariri groundwater allocation zones are within the catchment.
A description of water resources and context of the Selwyn Waihora catchment (taken from the Zone Implementation Programme) can be downloaded below.
Selwyn Waihora Catchment Water Resources and Context (113 kB)
Selwyn Te Waihora Catchment (4.5 MB)
Selwyn Waihora Land Use Map with irrigation (1.7 MB)
Selwyn Te Waihora - CWMS Zone Boundary and Limit Setting Study Area (Draft) February 2012 (4.5 MB)
Selwyn Te Waihora - Groundwater Allocation Zones (October 2011) (3.4 MB)
Selwyn Te Waihora - Groundwater Allocation Zones and Groundwater Takes (October 2011) (3.8 MB)
Selwyn Te Waihora - Surface Water Allocation Zones (October 2011) (3 MB)
Selwyn Te Waihora - Surface Water Allocation Zones and Surface Water Consents (October 2011) (3 MB)
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