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A range of links and downloads about water management in Canterbury

Selwyn Seminar series

How did we get here

An overview of Selwyn’s water by Ken Taylor, Our Land and Water

Watch video

Water quality in the Selwyn Te Waihora catchment

Dr Melissa Robson presenting on the state of water quality in the Sewlyn Te Waihora catchment. Sediment, phosphorus, nitrogen and bugs.

Watch video

Water Quantity in Selwyn

Dr Tim Davie, Environment Canterbury's chief scientist explains how Selwyn's groundwater and river systems work

Watch video

Selwyn Te Waihora – Our water story

A 'Selwyn Te Waihora – Our water story' booklet has been developed to support the Selwyn Seminar series. It explains the steps being taken to restore and rejuvenate the Selwyn Waihora Zone, and reiterates that what is done on the land impacts the waterways across the Selwyn catchment. Readers will gain insight on the water plan and its tough limits on nitrate loss from farms, and timeframes that have been set to meet these limits.

You can read it online here, or download it now, or contact us and we will send you a copy. 

Urban and recreational water

Urban Waterways

Everything we do in towns and cities can impact local streams and rivers. When it rains the water flows from roofs, footpaths, roads, carparks, and straight into the nearest stream – unfiltered.

Take a look

Pollution prevention

Everything that goes down our drains ends up in our rivers and streams, so preventing pollution is essential. 

Check out some easy guidance for:

Household pollution prevention

Construction and spill management prevention

Industrial pollution prevention

Caring for our urban waterways

Four in-depth discussions covering lots of issues and perspectives:

Mike Bourke, Christchurch City Council planning engineer talking about the Stronger Christchurch Infrastructure Rebuild Team (SCIRT) and the progress made on rebuilding water pipes.

Carl Hansen, Environment Canterbury groundwater science manager, speaking about where groundwater comes from and why we were seeing local streams and rivers drying up.

Dr Belinda Margetts, Christchurch City Council Waterways Ecologist talking about the health of our urban waterways, monitoring trends, and the sources of contaminants into Christchurch waterways.

Arapata Reuben, Christchurch- West Melton Water Zone Committee chair and Ngai Tahu representative, speaking about the importance of water to past and future generations.

Our recreational waterways

Summary of our Summer

During the swimming season, Environment Canterbury assess
es the health risks at popular freshwater swimming sites around the region.

View the report here


Fresh Water Report

A rebalancing of economic and ecological priorities along the great braided Waimakariri River. 

View the report here


Managing Canterbury’s Water

Get to know your water zone

Water zone committees develop actions and tactics to deliver on the Canterbury Water Management Strategy in their zone.  Find out what’s going on in your zone here, and stay up to date with Zone news by signing up here.

Canterbury Water – are we doing enough?

Four in-depth discussions covering lots of issues and perspectives:

Ken Hughey (Lincoln University / Hurunui Waiau Zone Committee):  
Balancing different land uses and their impacts

Pat McEvedy (Selwyn District Council):
Canterbury Water Management Strategy – the Selwyn Story

Claire McKay (Environment Canterbury):
A farmer's view on water management in Canterbury

Jay Graybill (Central South Island Fish and Game)

Water quality and quantity – what’s happening?

Land Air Water Aotearoa (LAWA) provides some useful water quality data on its website:

Canterbury’s river quality:

Canterbury’s swimming water quality:

Canterbury’s lake water quality:

Canterbury’s water quantity:

A collaborative approach

Cantabrians are taking an innovative approach in the fight to restore water quality and quantity. 

View the report here

Restoring biodiversity to protect waterways

Tutaepatu Lagoon, Woodend

A short video about the transformation of Tutaepatu Lagoon near Woodend Beach from a weed-infested waterway into an indigenous coastal ecosystem thanks to $200 000 of restoration funding from the Waimakariri Zone Committee.

Watch the video

Harts Creek, Selwyn

An 8 minute watch about the work of the Harts Creek and Birdlings Brook Streamcare Group, cleaning the waterway which flows into Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere. 

Watch the video

Waikakahi Stream, Glenavy

A 3 minute video demonstrating the transformation of this stream from a muddy bog into a pristine waterway, through collaboration between the Lower Waitaki-South Coastal Canterbury Zone Committee and the community.

Watch the video

Education in schools

We make it easier to educate young people about their role in building a sustainable future for Canterbury.

Our programmes and resources have been developed by a team of educators to align with the New Zealand curriculum. That means it’s easier for you to incorporate sustainable thinking and activities into your teaching. We’re available to deliver our programmes in your classroom or simply provide advice for you to best utilise our resources. 

You can contact us at education@ecan.govt.nz or check out our school specific programmes like Waitaha Wai and Storm Water here.

Curriculum linked resources

Our educators have developed a range of inquiry units of learning which align directly with the New Zealand curriculum. Talk to us about how we can support you to facilitate these programmes in your classroom. 

You can find our resources here, or contact us at education@ecan.govt.nz