Current works

Lower Waitaki River erosion

On Friday, 31 July 2020 a public meeting was held at Waitaki Bridge Hall to discuss remediation works and gather community views on the proposed work and funding model. All Lower Waitaki River Rating District ratepayers were welcome.

We now need the help of ratepayers from the Lower Waitaki River Rating District to develop a solution that best represents the interests of all landowners in the Lower Waitaki area. Your rates notice will indicate if you are a ratepayer of this district.

Have your say on the Lower Waitaki River erosion

To get an idea of everyone’s views, we have designed a brief survey – the results will help us and Otago Regional Council understand what works should be done and help us decide how to fund them. This is your chance to have your say.

How to have your say:

The survey should take less than 15 minutes to complete.

Supporting documentation:


Environment Canterbury coordinates river engineering work in the Waitaki River downstream of the Waitaki dam on behalf of the Lower Waitaki Rating District (Canterbury and Otago ratepayers).

The objective of this work is to control unwanted vegetation growth in the central part of the riverbed and encourage vegetation growth on the on the river berms/margins.

This work limits the extent of erosion in the riverbed margins and adjacent productive land with the aim of protecting people and property from flooding.

Over the summer of 2019/2020 there were a series of heavy rainfall events in the Southern Alps that filled the lakes in the upper catchment and resulted in high flows in the lower river system.

  • These very high flow events, followed by subsequent continuous high flows in the river, have caused significant erosion at 13 different locations down the river.
  • To control the erosion at the 13 locations will require remediation work with an estimated cost of $1 million.
  • These costs are additional to the existing routine river control program costing approximately $500,000 which is currently financed through an existing funding model.
  • The proposal uses that same funding model to raise the extra $1 million required for a program of remediation at each of the 13 sites.
  • As yet, no decisions regarding remediation of the erosion have been made.

If you have any questions, contact customer services on 0800 324 636 ask for Shaun McCracken.