Water Supply

Over the last 10 years the Council has carried out upgrades to ensure drinking water supplies meet current Drinking Water Standards for New Zealand. The approach has been, where possible, to seek ‘secure’ deep groundwater that does not need treatment. By July 2018 all of the Council’s 16 drinking water supplies will be upgraded, except for the Garrymere and Poyntzs Road schemes which will be completed in 2019.

The recent Report of the Havelock North Drinking Water Inquiry:  Stage 2 is recommending that Drinking Water Standards be changed. If the recommendations are carried out, for our District it will mean that all ‘secure’ deep groundwater will need to have ultra-violet treatment and all on-demand supplies in our urban communities will need to be chlorinated. Restricted supplies, mainly in our rural communities, are already chlorinated. Chlorination equipment is in place for all our supplies. However, only the Mandeville/Fernside and Waikuku Beach supplies have ultraviolet (UV) treatment installed.

Over the first 4 years of this LTP, the Council has included approximately $3 million for the installation of ultra-violet treatment systems to meet future (higher) standards. For large urban communities the cost is expected
to be less than $30 per property per year, whereas it may cost up to $200 per property per year for small rural schemes. The rate will vary depending on the number of ratepayers on each scheme.

While it is likely chlorination of all schemes will be required and budget provisions have been made for this, the Council has decided it will not start chlorinating schemes in advance of any revised Drinking Water Standards. Results of recent community consultation have been strongly in favour of having unchlorinated water, even though the community were made aware of the risks. At the moment there is still some uncertainty over the likely requirements and timing of any changes to the Drinking Water Standards. The rate for water scheme chlorination, which includes operational costs is estimated to be $9 per property per year.