An Environment Waikato hearing committee has granted an application by Thames-Coromandel District Council (TCDC) to continue sourcing Matarangi’s domestic supply from the Opitonui River, subject to a range of conditions.
Matarangi lies north of Whitianga on the east coast of the Coromandel Peninsula.
The application by TCDC was publicly notified last May and Environment Waikato appointed a committee to consider a range of submissions on the issue at a hearing in Whitianga from 7-8 February.
The new application was for up to 3000 cubic metres per day, particularly during the peak Christmas holiday period.
After considering all evidence, the committee granted the water take application, but restricted it to its existing volume of up to 2000 cubic metres per day.
The committee felt the continuation of the existing water take was “ecologically viable”, but imposed conditions designed to avoid, mitigate and/or remedy any significant adverse environmental effects on the river.
It also imposed a requirement for TCDC to prepare a water management plan to develop “appropriate, effective and enforceable water conservation and efficiency of use measures” for Matarangi.
“The committee has reached this decision based on the facts that the development is not expected to require that volume (3000 cubic metres) of water at any time within the consent duration…and that by the applicant’s own information, a significantly lower volume (1400 cubic metres for 2000 lots) is required for essential uses,” the committee said in its report.
“It is considered that 2000 cubic metres per day is ample to supply the development with potable water over the duration of the consent.”