You can have your say on freshwater management during two community meetings at Lake Wanaka Centre this Tuesday. Otago Regional Council (ORC) will be reviewing The Regional Plan: Water at 12.30pm and 7pm and seeks to build on the work that the Wanaka community has previously done to establish values for the Cardrona River catchment area.
Tuesday’s sessions will start with a short presentation, followed by a discussion around currently identified and new community values.
ORC has adopted five Freshwater Management Units (FMUs) and five sub-units, called rohe, which are areas by which waterways will be managed going forward. The Cardrona River catchment community is one of the first FMU value gathering sessions within ORC’s staged-approach. Alongside the Arrow River catchment, ORC will begin with these two communities as both have already started identifying values and objectives in their work with Council to set minimum flows.
“The policy direction ORC takes in each FMU and rohe must reflect the values of the whole community,” said ORC chief executive Sarah Gardner. “We all rely on water in different ways, and the challenges associated with water are not isolated to particular sectors or parts of the community.”
She continued, “…The conversation we need to have now will be framed inside the National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management that we must follow when making new water policy. The values of the Arrow and Cardrona Rivers will be important benchmarks for the policy-making process when we progress to objective-setting and determining limits on water quality impacts and water takes from those rivers.”
ORC councillors adopted the FMUs and rohe at an April 3 meeting.
In addition to Tuesday’s sessions, the community can have their say on Cardrona River’s FMU management via ORC’s website or by posting their feedback on a brochure that will arrive in the mail.