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Wellington Region

Surface Water Zone: Te Awarua o Porirua

Te Awarua o Porirua Surface Water Zone lies on the west coast of the Wellington Region, between the Kāpiti Coast zone to the north and Wellington Harbour zone to the south and east. It is defined by the surface water catchment for the Porirua Harbour and occupies an area of 200 square kilometres (3 percent of the region). The Pauatahanui and Onepoto arms of the Harbour together form the largest estuary in the lower North Island. 

Te Awarua o Porirua Harbour Water Management Zone comprises predominantly rolling lowland hill country with either steep basement rock or fine sediment estuarine margins. Land use is dominated by the urban settlements of Porirua city, Plimmerton and Pauatahanui as well as low intensity farming and forestry.

It does not contain any significant groundwater aquifers or large rivers and the primary stream systems (Horokiri, Pauatahanui and Porirua streams) have modest summer flows and do not support large takes. Therefore, the type of land use and lack of high yield water resource means that abstractive pressures in this management zone are low relative to other parts of the region.

Default rule-of-thumb policies relating to minimum flows and allocation limits are therefore adopted. Attention in this zone is focused more on managing water quality (particularly nutrient and sediments loads) because the sensitivity and significance of the estuary receiving environment.

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.

    Total run-off to sea has been estimated by aggregating mean flow statistics from the River Environment Classification (developed by the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research). 

  • 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.

    Values for water availability have not yet been provided. Greater Wellington Regional Council is in the process (as at June 2015) of notifying a new Regional Plan that will contain proposed allocation limits.  When this Plan is notified the proposed limits will be used to update the empty fields.

  • 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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