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Kaikohe-Ngawha and Kawakawa-Moerewa water restrictions reduced

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Level 3 water restrictions for Kaikohe-Ngawha and Kawakawa-Moerewa are being reduced to Level 2 from today.

The change means all but one of the Far North District Council’s eight water supplies will be on Level 2 restrictions. This allow households and businesses connected to the Council supply to use handheld hoses to water gardens and wash cars, buildings and paved areas. Swimming pools can also be filled from the mains supply, although a ban on automatic irrigation and sprinkler systems remains in place for both commercial and residential users.

The supply remaining on Level 3 restrictions is Omanaia-Rawene. Mayor John Carter says Petaka Stream which supplies raw water to Omanaia and Rawene, is still flowing below minimum levels consented by Northland Regional Council.

"We hope this week’s rain will push those levels up, but until we see flows staying above the minimum for at least two weeks, Level 3 restrictions will have to remain in place."

He says that despite recent rain, the latest seasonal forecast issued by Met Service on Tuesday predicts another dry winter. "We are told to expect an extended and significant spell of drier weather for Northland from July to September with up to 30 per cent less rain possible during August and through September. This is concerning, so we are reluctant to reduce Level 2 restrictions any further for now."

He says the Council has worked hard to provide new water sources for communities badly hit by the recent drought. Temporary supplementary water supplies for Kaikohe and Kaitaia are now in place, and staff are now focused on developing new permanent water supplies.

These efforts were given a significant boost on Monday when the Government announced that consents for a water storage project planned for Kaikohe will be fast-tracked. The reservoir will provide water for agricultural and horticultural use, as well as drinking water for Kaikohe. It is hoped the reservoir will be operating within 18 months. In the meantime, the Council is progressing work on a second bore at Kaikohe’s Monument Hill to further supplement the Wairoro Stream, the town’s primary water source.

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