Irrigation New Zealand

IrrigationNZ focuses its advocacy work at the national level.

We only get involved in the regions if the issue is precedent-setting for irrigation.

Water Services Bill 

Do you supply water for domestic consumption? If so, you will affected by the new Water Services Bill, which proposes major reforms for the water supply sector.

IrrigationNZ has put together a summary document to give you more information about the Bill. (see below)

We will be seeking feedback from members on the Bill before we make a submission to the Government’s Health Select Committee.

The Department of Internal Affairs have just released proposed processes that will need to be followed by rural agricultural drinking water supplies. We will hold a workshop with members to discuss the issues and the Bill in more detail. We will send out information about the proposed processes and the workshop early in the New Year.

If you have any particular concerns or issues you want to comment on before we hold the workshop, please let us know on

Water Services Bill Information 

Briefing for Ministers 

Click here to see the 2020 Briefing for incoming Ministers IrrigationNZ provide 

In August (2020) the Government released the final policies and regulations in relation to the Action for Health Waterways, following on from the public consultation and advice of the expert advisory panel the Government appointed.

There are a range of different documents that implement these policies:

  • A new National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management
  • New National Environmental Standards for Freshwater
  • Stock Exclusion Regulations (under section 360 of the RMA)
  • Amendments to the Resource Management Act 1991.

Below is a summary of the new changes. This is more detailed than the summary we sent out to members when the decisions were announced a few months ago. It includes links to the relevant documents and the relevant page numbers. For those wanting a shorter summery this will be available on our website.

Please note that this summary is provided for general information purposes only. It is recommended that you seek individual, tailored advice to understand how the new rules apply to specific situations.

Final Policy Update - August 2020 (Short Version)

Final Policy Update - August 2020 (Long Version)

In the lead up to the 2020 election IrrigationNZ is enaging with the New Zealand Government to showcase where priorities should lie in regards to freshwater management, see the full Election Manifesto here:

IrrigationNZ Election Manifesto 2020

Advocacy Hot Topics:

  • Submission on the proposed Fresh Water policy reform. If you want to write your own submission here is a template to help you do it: Submission Template
  • Submissions on Environment Canterbury’s Proposed Plan Change 7 to the Land and Water Regional Plan: PC7 Changes Summary document
  • Government Freshwater Reforms including -
    • Resource Management Act reforms
    • Freshwater Management National Policy Statement
    • Review of the current allocation system and resolving iwi rights and interests
    • Irrigation Good Management Practice expectations and reporting
    • Freshwater monitoring and reporting
  • Financial Reporting Exemptions for Irrigation Companies and Co-operatives - Financial Markets Conduct Act
  • Irrigation Scheme Valuations - Rating Valuations Act
  • Centre Pivot Electrical Safety – Electrical Regulation Act

INZ's other main focus is building capability and capacity for the irrigation sector. Everyone needs to be enabled to achieve Good Practice.

Training Initiatives:

  • Development of an irrigation engineering apprenticeship for the Service Industry
  • Integrating the irrigation management qualification into primary sector apprenticeship and cadet programmes

Knowledge Initiatives:

  • Development of an e-learning platform to readily provide ‘SMART tips and tools’ for irrigation