The Green Party says the Government's plan for limiting the pollution of freshwater lakes and rivers is weak and provides farmers with a licence to pollute.
The Government on Thursday released a national policy for freshwater management, which proposes a framework for regional councils to account for all water takes and contamination discharges.
Green Party water spokesperson Eugenie Sage says the policy lacks teeth and will not deliver on making rivers safe for swimming.
She says the Government has avoided setting stricter limits so it does not upset the agribusiness industry.
But Federated Farmers says it is in farmers' interests to clean up waterways.