31 Jul 2009

Radical plan proposed for water management

6:38 am on 31 July 2009

Interested parties in the water industry have released proposals they say will improve New Zealand's fragmented water management practices.

The parties, convened by lobby group Water New Zealand, say the current water management system, in which 85 territorial authorities and 11 government departments play a part, is inefficient.

They are proposing taking water management away from regional councils, whose decision-making powers would go to district or city councils. These councils would be advised by the Government's new Environmental Protection Authority.

The authority would be guided by a new water commission.

But Environment Minister Nick Smith says the Government will not consider the recommendations at present.