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River Recharge Resource Consent

This page contains information on the key conditions of the resource consent for river recharge with groundwater.

This page contains information on the key conditions of the resource consent for river recharge with groundwater.

Key conditions of the resource consent include:

  • 35 year duration (the most allowed under the RMA, after which a further consent would be needed)
  • Council is to implement demand management measures to reduce demand to 490 litres per person per day by 31 July 2016.
  • Water abstraction from the Waikanae River and borefield has been extended to allow a maximum abstraction for water supply of 30,700m³/day.
  • No groundwater discharge is allowed in the first year of consent. This means bore water cannot be used to recharge the river while base monitoring data is collected. After this discharge to the river is to be limited to 20% of the Waikanae River flow for two years. This is a precautionary approach to ensure no unexpected adverse effects.
  • Until ongoing monitoring/mitigation plans have been certified by GWRC a set of interim triggers has been agreed that would spark a three stage response - 'alert', 'action' and 'cease'. They cover monitoring of the following environmental elements:
    • Water level in the shallow aquifer – to protect existing well owners within 1km of the production bores
    • Water level in deep aquifer – to protect deep aquifer from salt water intrusion
    • Electrical Conductivity levels – to protect against salt water intrusion
    • Water levels in Wetlands – protect natural water levels in 13 wetlands
    • Coastal stream flow – to protect flow in small coast streams
    • River flow – to protect flow of the Waikanae River at Jim Cooke Park
    • Discharge water quality – to protect the Waikanae River quality
    • Periphyton growth in Waikanae River – to protect the river from excessive periphyton growth
  • Waikanae River water flow shall not fall below 750 litres/second, unless this occurs naturally.
  • The Adaptive Management Group (members are from GWRC, Te Ati Awa Water Working Group and Council) shall be provided annual monitoring reports and can make recommendation relating to interim triggers, changes to ongoing monitoring/mitigation plans and operational plans.
  • The consent requires a performance assessment to be undertaken after 15 years or when abstraction reaches 28,000m³/day.