What are “they” doing

What are ECAN & CCC doing to fix the river?

Environment Canterbury, Christchurch City Council and the Community Waterways Partnership are doing a great deal to fix the problems…but they need your help.

The river has arrived at its current state over decades of misuse…even if we all help, it will take twenty years at least to wind back the problems.

Environment Canterbury

ECAN regulates use of the water and land resources through the granting of resource consents.  Its water management approach is focused on:

  • Empowering communities
  • Working with mana whenua
  • Collaborative planning
  • Communicating technical information
  • New ways of working
  • Looking ahead
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The Canterbury Water Management Strategy was established in 2009 and sets a framework for a collaborative approach to managing freshwater in Canterbury. Under this, decisions on water allocation and nutrient management in our river are driven by recommendations from local water zone committees; the river catchment is within the Christchurch West Melton Water Zone.

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Empowering communities to make their own decisions locally to meet region-wide targets requires genuine engagement with local communities and practical consultation at a grassroots level.

In a wider context, GNS Science, New Zealand’s geoscience research CRI is exploring and monitoring geological hazards and the environment. Understanding the role and influence of groundwater is critical.

Christchurch City Council

The CCC, working collaboratively with ECAN, funds, operates and controls aspects of water management through:

At times, it is constrained in what it can achieve by national laws & regulations, funding constraints and conflicting community preferences.

Under the Land Drainage Recovery Programme, the CCC has built/is building several large retention ponds in the upper reaches of the river to control flooding and sediment.

Retention basins under construction. Click for more information
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Community Waterways Partnership

Click to view Charter

The Partnership involves:

  • Christchurch City Council
  • ECAN
  • Department of Conservation
  • Ministry for the Environment
  • Canterbury District Health Board
  • Universities & schools
  • Industry representatives
  • River care and other community groups

Vision: A collaborative partnership that supports the development of community-based initiatives to improve the ecological health, indigenous biodiversity and the amenity value of our urban waterways.

Outcomes: We are working together to:

  1. Establish a strong collaborative partnership between community groups, businesses, researchers, and local, regional and central government
  2. Achieve consensus on messaging interwoven with appropriate cultural narrative, and market these with an innovative package of shared and consistent material suitable for a variety of audiences
  3. Develop a network of trained people to deliver the key messages professionally and consistently
  4. Design and implement stormwater, habitat and water conservation educational resources to supplement existing resources for use in schools and community events
  5. Advocate for incentives that enable community implementation of positive stormwater, habitat and water conservation actions and solutions
  6. Establish and facilitate a network of water care champions and kaitiaki
  7. Advocate for national legislative change to better address stormwater contaminants
  8. Develop research to evaluate outcomes and improvements in our knowledge of best practice community interventions
  9. Establish, facilitate or support projects to deliver these outcomes
  10. Advocate for resources to sustain the partnership and deliver these outcomes