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Lifestylers encouraged to use water wisely

At a time of continuing dry weather and low river flows, Environment Canterbury is reminding  lifestyle-block occupiers  to use water efficiently when they are permitted to do so.

At a time of continuing dry weather and low river flows, Environment Canterbury is reminding  lifestyle-block occupiers  to use water efficiently when they are permitted to do so.

Marty Mortiaux, Environment Canterbury Regional Manager Monitoring and Compliance, said it was important for everyone in the community to act responsibly with their water use.

“Lifestylers and small-block holders should know how much water they are allowed to take and use, and should make sure they do not exceed what they are entitled to,” Mr Mortiaux said.  ”You may be able to take a permitted volume of water depending on the location of your property and other factors.

“However, there have been instances where small-block holders may have been irrigating for several hours or overnight.  In almost all cases this would not be a permitted activity due to pump rates and permitted activity allocation rules.”

Water may be taken without a resource consent for an individual’s reasonable domestic (drinking, household washing, garden) and stock use under the Resource Management Act 1991, as long as there is no adverse effect on the environment.  An additional permitted volume for uses such as irrigation may also be available if this is allowed by the relevant regional rules(s).

Companies, bodies corporate, partnerships and trusts, not being “individuals”, can only take and use water that is allowed by the relevant regional rule(s) or by a resource consent.

“If you are taking water from a well or a surface water body for your own use, such as watering your garden and lawn or for stock, you may not need a consent,” Mr Mortiaux said.  “If you do require a consent, you will need to fit a flow meter to record the amount of water you are using. In a dry period, restrictions may also apply.”

For further information on taking domestic and stock water (including amounts) and other uses, see the information guides on the Environment Canterbury website, www.ecan.govt.nz

You can also contact Environment Canterbury Customer Services on 0800 324 636 if you have questions or need information on taking a permitted volume of water for other purposes.