A Canterbury irrigation company is proposing a $20.5 million reservoir to take water from the Waimakariri River to irrigate 18,000 hectares of farmland.
Waimakariri Irrigation Ltd is to present the proposal to its shareholders at a meeting on Wednesday evening.
Chairman Gavin Reed says the aim is to ensure there is enough water when river levels are low giving people the reliability they need to run their farms.
Mr Reed says changes to Canterbury Regional Council consents mean the right to take water from the river is restricted for more days each irrigation season, but that can be overcome if water is stored.
The cost of building the reservoir could be up to $20.5 million.
If shareholders approve the proposal, Waimakariri Irrigation will then need to apply for a building consent.