On this page: Waikato Regional Plan: Variation No. 6 - Water Allocation, download the variation, Council decisions on submissions, appeals, Environment Court hearing, want to know more?
Waikato Regional Plan: Variation No. 6 - Water Allocation
The Waikato Regional Council prepared and notified a variation to the Waikato Regional Plan to manage the allocation and use of freshwater over all of the Waikato region.
In recent times the method by which surface and groundwater is allocated in the region has come under increasing scrutiny and sometimes criticism from both political and technical perspectives. Many stakeholders believe that Waikato Regional Council's water allocation policy framework (as reflected in the Waikato Regional Plan) was not designed to deal with current levels of demand or competition for water. Certainly in recent times, a number of issues have arisen that have stretched the organisation’s ability to respond proactively and appropriately to the demands being placed upon the region’s water supply.
Variation 6 was notified for submissions in late 2006. A Hearing Committee heard submissions over a number of weeks in Hamilton between December 2007 and March 2008. Council adopted the recommendations of the Hearing Committee in October 2008 as its decisions.
Council’s decisions were appealed to the Environment Court by a large number of parties. The appeals covered every aspect of Variation No. 6. The key issues arising from the appeals included:
- electricity generation versus water for irrigation
- priority for water for domestic and municipal supply
- s14(3)(b) takes and permitted activities for on farm use of water
- area based permitted activity rules
- iwi allocation of water for unspecified uses
- the use of common expiry dates
- transfer of water permits
- ground water takes
- temporary takes
- Section 3.3.3 Policy 3 and Table 3-5
- consent status of Huntly Power Station
- use of water
- various definitions.
A five month Environment Court hearing of the appeals was held in Hamilton from February to August 2011.
The Court issued a decision on the appeals on 30 November 2011.
You can download a copy of the Environment Court decision here:
Environment Court decision
The Court directed Council to make changes to the end of hearing version and file a new copy with the Environment Court. The Court has considered the amended version filed and released a minute confirming the wording of the Variation.
You can download a copy of the minute of the Environment Court here:
Minute of the Environment Court dated 10 February 2012
Appendix A to the Minute dated 10 February 2012
Erratum to Minute of the Court dated 10 February 2012 (released 22 February 2012)
On 29 March 2012, Council resolved to make the Variation operative. The Variation will be operative on 10 April 2012.
You can download a copy of the Variation here:
Variation No. 6 - Water Allocation (Operative 10 April 2012) (842kb)
Want to know more?
If you have any questions about the variation or the consultation process please call us on 0800 800 401 or email us at email@example.com.
The following documents have been removed from these pages:
- the variation as notified (October 2006)
- the s32 analysis as notified (October 2006)
- Summary of Submissions (February 2007)
- the Staff report and recommendations on submissions (November 2007)
- Strikethrough version of the variation (incorporating changes made as a result of the Committee recommendations)
- Proposed Variation No.6 - Water Allocation Hearings Committee Report Volume 1
- Proposed Variation No.6 - Water Allocation Hearings Committee Report Volume 2
- Proposed Variation No.6 - Water Allocation Hearings Committee Report Volume 3
- Proposed Variation No.6 - Water Allocation Hearings Committee Report Recommendation version - Explanation of the approach taken in the Variation
- Waikato Regional Plan: Variation No.6 - Water Allocation - Appeals Report
- Proposed Variation No.6 - Water Allocation Hearings Committee Report - Part D - Clean version
- Summary of council decisions
- End of Environment Court Hearing Version dated 8 August 2011.
If you would like copies of any of these reports, please contact us.