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Canterbury region

Surface Water Zone: Lower Waitaki - South Coastal Canterbury

The Lower Waitaki South Coastal Canterbury water management zone includes the Waitaki River and its tributaries below the Waitaki dam, Wainono lagoon and its tributaries including the Waihao and Hook Rivers and the Makikihi and Otaio Rivers. The Zone includes all of the Waimate District and part of Waitaki District (including the rural towns of Duntroon and Kurow). The water resources of the zone includes the large alpine Waitaki River, the hill-fed Maerewhenua and Hakataramea Rivers, the Waihao River, its tributaries and the Wainono Lagoon, and the groundwater zones of Waikakahi and Welcome Streams, Makikihi, Waimate, Whitneys Creek, Otaio, Hook, Waihao and Waitaki. The Zone has a network of springfed streams and lagoons in the coastal zone

Water usage and allocation in this zone is dominated by water from the Waiataki River. At present this runs two irrigation schemes and there are development plans to bring Waitaki water further north to as far as the Pareora River. There is some limited groundwater use from deep groundwater resources.

Water Use
Surface Water in this Zone

Regional councils collect information about how much water is available and manage resource consents for those wishing to take water from rivers and streams. Use the buttons below to view information on: how much water is available, where it comes from and how its used.


Rainfall {{waterAvailable.rainfall}} Runoff to sea {{waterAvailable.runoff}} Surface Water available: {{waterSource.availableToAllocate}} Irrigation
Town supply
  • How much surface water is there in this zone?

    Rainfall and flow in this surface water zone

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    Rainfall and runoff

    Relative breakdown Source Volume
    Rainfall total:
    {{waterAvailable.rainfall }}
    rainfall Rainfall Total {{waterAvailable.rainfall}}
    Runoff total:
    {{waterAvailable.runoff }}
    runoff Runoff to sea {{waterAvailable.runoff}}

    The table above shows the average amount of rainfall the water management zone receives each year and how much of that flows out to sea. These are approximate figures only.

    Runoff to sea is calculated from surface water flows only

    Runoff is greater than rainfall because the zone receives most of it's surface flows from the upstream zone (Upper Waitaki) which has a rainfall of 16 billion m3 per year

  • Water consents: How much water is consented and used?

    Surface water available to consent

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    Consented water in this surface water zone

    Use the tables below to look at how much water is available compared with how much is actually consented within this water management zone. Click the plus to expand subzones where available

    Comparing consents and use
    Amount available to consent In this surface water management zone:
    {{}} {{}}
    available to consent
    Amount consented
    measured and non measured
    Amount used (measured)
    Amount Units Consented or used as a percentage of available
    Total available to consent {{}} {{}} {{}}
    Total consented {{}} {{}} {{}} {{}}
    Total consented and measured {{}} {{}} {{}} {{}}
    Total measured amount used {{}} {{}} {{}}
    Total measured volume used {{}} {{}}

    The table above shows the amount of water that is available for use compared to the amount that has been consented. The ‘Total Consented’ and ‘Total Consented and Measured’ fields are based on percentages of the ‘Total available to Consent’ field. If this field is not populated no data will be displayed. Some consents require actual use to be monitored and this is presented as 'Total measured volume Used' where available.

  • Water consents: How is consented water used?

    Consents by use in this surface water zone

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    Consented water

    Overall annual volume for {{waterAvailable.year}}
    Relative breakdown
    Activity Percentage of total consented Total volume Number of consents
    {{item.displayText}} {{item.displayText}} - - No data available {{item.breakdownPercentage}}% {{item.totalVolume}} m3 {{item.numberOfConsents}}
    Total {{}}% {{}} m3 {{}}

    The above table shows the proportion of water consented for irrigation, industrial, stock, town supply and other. It excludes hydro electricity. In this region/management zone {{hydroUsage.totalVolume}} m3/year is consented for hydro-electricity and makes up {{hydroUsage.percentageConsented}}% of the total water volume consented for this region/management zone


Monitored sites in this Zone

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No sites found.