Know Your Catchment is an online platform which showcases water monitoring data and different ways freshwater supports wellbeing.
IrrigationNZ chief executive Elizabeth Soal says the platform is a step in the right direction to better inform the public about freshwater and help track the effects of farming practice change on water quality over time.
"This platform will engage and educate both rural and urban communities about the commitment farmers and growers have made to maintaining and improving water quality with information about water quality, irrigation, recreation, wetlands and more."
The project started in 2018, funded by the Ministry of Primary Industries Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures Fund and managed by IrrigationNZ in partnership with Waitaki Irrigators Collective, Otago Regional Council and Environment Canterbury and supported by Beef & Lamb NZ and FAR.
Given the public feeling about water quality farmers and growers need to openly demonstrate the practice change that is happening and all the robust environmental monitoring data needs to be consolidated in an easy-to-understand way which is what Know Your Catchment does.
Farmers and growers are doing a lot of monitoring in their catchments and bringing this data together to tell the catchment story is important.
Ms Soal says the platform has been piloted in the Waitaki Catchment in South Canterbury and North Otago and it would be great to see it utilised in other areas.
"This project has a lot of scope and potential; we really hope people use it for many years to come and we are currently looking at ways we can extend it for future use."