New Tauranga water plan begins
Tauranga’s new Water Watchers Plan takes effect from today.
The Water Watchers Plan replaces traditional outdoor watering restrictions with a year round plan.
Tauranga City Council says this is to help maintain the city’s water supply, and provide everyone with clarity about how they can use water at home, at work, and in the community.
The city will ease into the new plan over the next two weeks with restrictions hotting up from December in line with the warmer weather.
Sprinkler use will be banned completely from December 1, however other methods of outdoor watering, such as handheld hoses with a trigger nozzle, are permitted all year round at certain times of the day.
The new plan is in response to three dry summers in a row which have taken their toll on groundwater levels in our region and left the aquifer-fed streams, Tautau and Waiorohi, which supply the city with water at the lowest levels seen going into a summer.
The streams are aquifer-fed, which means groundwater levels need to recharge before stream flows can improve. Unfortunately, there’s been a lack of groundwater recharge throughout the Bay of Plenty Region over the last three years, and the latest Bay of Plenty Regional Council data suggests the region is in for another hot, dry summer.
“Instead of introducing water restrictions reactively when demand starts to outstrip our source water supplies, we’ll have a plan in place that provides clarity about how we can use water in any given month,” said Water Services manager Peter Bahrs earlier this month.
He hopes the plan will prevent the 30 per cent spike in outdoor water use generally seen over the peak of summer and encourage people to use water wisely all year round.
Find out more and view the full plan here.