Canterbury Water Management Strategy
In Canterbury, as with other regions in New Zealand, water is a vital and valued resource for a wide range of rural and urban interests. It is subject to diverse and often conflicting uses. For example, the rapid growth of irrigation had been a contentious issue together with the maintenance of water quality in streams and rivers.
We were selected to develop and implement a programme of community engagement and consultation to rebuild public and stakeholder trust and confidence in the management of water by this large regional council. We worked with a diverse team of specialists to develop a strategy that all parties bought into, which had a strong grass-roots impact and struck a chord with both rural and urban populations.
It was the beginning of a journey in 2008 which continues today and we continue to be involved at its various stages. We were very pleased to have contributed to setting new directions for water management in Canterbury and have carried that experience to several other parts of the country.
The outcome of this work was the development of the Canterbury Water Management Strategy 2009 which is now a leading approach in water management nationally.