Our waterways are precious community resources that we need to protect for future generations.

What this means

We would like the community to be more involved in water conservation and quality programmes, so we can better protect the quantity and quality of our water.


How we'll get there

  • Work closely with river care groups to raise community awareness of improving waterways and sustainable water use.
  • Establish an urban waterways research programme with the Waterways Centre for Freshwater Management.
  • Complete the Integrated Water Strategy.
  • Improve environmental outcomes through the implementation of stormwater management plans.
  • Work with architects, developers and builders to optimise stormwater treatment and discharge and incorporate innovative outcomes.
  • Further advocacy work to Government and community on copper-free brake pads.
  • Secure status of water supply at most pump stations. 

How we're doing 

Christchurch's water supplies complying with the Health Act 1956 and drinking-water standardsNegative Result

In the 2017/18 year, all Christchurch water supplies failed to meet the drinking-water quality standards specifically for protozoa.

Water supplies for 74% of the Christchurch population failed to comply with the Health Act requirements for safe drinking water supplies.

This resulted in the Council chlorinating the city’s water supply until work on fixing the wellheads is completed, which is expected to be done by the end of 2019


Quality of Christchurch waterways Mixed Results

Since 2013 fewer sites are rated as poor and more have moved to the fair category of the Council's water quality index

In 2017, 40% of sites were recorded as having poor water quality, 40% had fair water quality and 19% had good water quality. No site had very good water quality, as guidelines were exceeded on at least one occasion at all sites. There was also no site that recorded very poor water quality.

The Ōpāwaho/ Heathcote River and Linwood Canal catchments generally had poor water quality. All other catchments generally had fair to good water quality.

The Ōtūkaikino River recorded the best water quality out of all the catchments and the Ōpāwaho/Heathcote River catchment recorded the worst water quality, with the 11 worst sites all being from this catchment.