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Water and Land Plan

What we do on the land affects our water.

As a regional council we have a responsibility to ensure the region’s natural resources are sustainably managed so that they are available for future generations to use and enjoy.

Maintaining and improving Southland’s water quality is our biggest challenge and first priority.

The proposed Southland Water and Land Plan seeks to address activities that are known to have a significant effect on water quality, such as land use intensification, wintering and stock exclusion from waterways.

Download the proposed Southland Water and Land Plan documents here.

Protecting our water

Environment Southland’s scientific monitoring shows that we have a measurable decline in water quality in some areas. As a region, we need to address the problem of declining water quality and stresses on water quantity (how much we can take).

Southland’s land use has intensified over the past 150 years due to development and human settlement, which has resulted in changes to waterways. More recent land use intensification, together with ageing stormwater and sewerage systems is putting pressure on water quality.

Find out more about monitoring our waterways and the problem with our water.

Shaping the plan - the process so far

The proposed Southland Water and Land Plan is a new plan that is a combination of the outgoing Regional Water Plan for Southland and Regional Effluent Land Application Plan.

Physiographic Zones

The problem with managing water quality is that it varies across our region.

Physiographic zones are areas with similar characteristics that affect water quality. They allow us to offer advice and management strategies that are specific for your place - to keep nutrients on the farm and out of waterways.

Find out what zone you’re in.

Find out more about the Physiographics of Southland project and check out the factsheets for each zone.

Farm environmental management plan

Got more than 20ha of land?

You’ll need to prepare a farm environmental management plan.

Good management practices form part of this plan – find out more about them and download our range of factsheets.

Find out more

Find out about the issues affecting our region’s:

Learn about our Environmental monitoring programmes.