Submission re Rangitata South Irrigation consents

The NZRCA opposes a consent application for an irrigation structure because of the lack of consideration of safety of instream users.

New Zealand Recreational Canoeing Association
c/o Kieron Thorpe
Conservation Officer

Environment Canterbury
PO Box 345
Fax (03) 365 3828

Attention: Consents

12 July 2007

Re Rangitata South Irrigation Ltd application for consents CRC070923, CRC070924 and CRC070925

The NZRCA opposes the consent applications for the construction, operation and maintenance of the irrigation outtake.

The applicant failed to consult the NZRCA, nor any other kayaking party, on its scheme. The applicant also failed to refer to the Environment Court Recommending Report in respect of the Rangitata WCO, which is more up to date than the Special Tribunal report.

The stretch of the Rangitata that is kayaked and rafted, finishing at Arundel, is protected for its nationally outstanding water based recreation values.

The NZRCA has concerns about the visual and safety implications of the 300m long outtake structure, and in river maintenance works. Any structures in stream whether temporary or permanent could pose a hazard to river users, and adversely affect amenity values.

The applicant should have consulted with the NZRCA to ascertain what specific concerns it has, given that it is a nationally important section of river, protected by a WCO. ECan should have required additional information from the applicant on this point also.

The NZRCA requests the application be put on hold, and that further information be provided by the applicant after it has consulted with water based recreation interests, as to how the visual and safety adverse effects (both permanent and those created by in river maintenance works from time to time) of the outtake can be mitigated by conditions.

The NZRCA seeks relief in the form of conditions appropriately mitigating the visual and safety effects of the proposal.

The NZRCA wishes to be heard, and will consider presenting a joint case with others with similar interests.

Yours faithfully
Kieron Thorpe

Copy to the Applicant
Pattle Delamore Parnters
PO Box 389
Fax 03 363 3101
Attention Michele Widdowson