News

Water quality framework needs improvement

LGNZ’s “Water 2050: Quality – Review of the framework for water quality” discussion paper has identified three key issues for New Zealand’s framework for water quality, and points to opportunities for change that could be a focus under the Government’s Three Waters Review.

LGNZ’s review of the regulatory framework considers how we can better meet the quality of freshwater through environmental standards and protect the quality of our drinking water through specific health-related standards.

“The key finding from our review is that the regulatory framework for fresh water and drinking water does not take into account adequately the costs for communities to meet these standards,” says LGNZ President Dave Cull.

“There also needs to be better understanding of the costs and associated funding to meet these. Councils have competing priorities on water quality standards and we need to work with central government to agree what the priorities are that need to be addressed.”

LGNZ’s Quality discussion paper identifies five key opportunities for change that could result in better drinking and freshwater quality.

The Quality discussion paper is the second from LGNZ’s Water 2050 project which seeks to develop an integrated water policy framework.