A river runs through Waimea dam debate

Posted 28/06/2017

Stuff website.

Nelson-Marlborough Fish & Game manager Rhys Barrier wants to keep clear of the politics surrounding the proposed Waimea dam.

His sights are fixed on a minimum flow for the Waimea River so its "life force and ecological function" are not compromised in dry summers.

"It's about maintaining an ecologically healthy river," Barrier said.

How that was achieved, whether by way of a dam or other means such as tougher water restrictions, was a matter for Tasman District Council, he said.

This month, Barrier told councillors he acknowledged TDC was at a "difficult decision-making point" with Waimea Plains water management.

"Building a dam will provide for all existing, and some future increases in irrigation and urban supply, as well as meeting government and community expectations for improved river health but comes at significant cost to the region and its ratepayers," he said.

"Not building a dam, however, means the council is unlikely to be meeting the present requirements of the Government's National Policy Statement [for Freshwater Management]."

Read the full article here.