Patience is being called for as the Otago Regional Council
works on implementation of new water quality plan changes.
The council's 6A water plan change for water quality was
signed off by the Environment Court this month but still has
to be approved by the council.
The council has received many requests for more information
about its impact.
Otago Regional Council chief executive Peter Bodeker said it
was natural for farmers and industry groups to want to know
what the changes would mean for them.
''I realise there is some frustration but we are not there
The council had just found out what the final changes were
going to be following the court mediation process, and it
would take time to translate it into a workable plan, Mr
''We had to wait to see what was going to be in it to
There were issues such as how the rules were going to be
enforced, and at what level the council would take action if
the rules were breached, as well as around on-farm
''We're not going to ping everybody,'' he said.
So staff were being urged to ask farmers to wait for the full
''We're talking months not years.''
The council was planning to hold a major seminar linked to a
series of road shows around the region in conjunction with
Federated Farmers, DairyNZ or Beef and Lamb in late winter.
Councillor Gerry Eckhoff said at a meeting last week he was
concerned whether or not the technology existed to help
farmers meet the new regulations even with the lysimeter
trials held in Omakau and Hawea.
Mr Bodeker said he was confident there were tools that would
help farmers or foresters meet 6A.
There were laboratories that could measure nutrient levels
right now, he said.
''They will be able to do exactly what they need when we
begin to enforce in 2020.''