Our purpose is to preserve New Zealand's whitewater resources and enhance opportunities to enjoy them safely.


Preservation of whitewater, threats to recreational amenity, wild and scenic rivers.

Hurunui and Waiau River Regional Plan recommendations accepted

Environmental Canterbury (ECAN) commissioners have accepted recommendations from a hearing panel on the proposed Hurunui and Waiau River Regional Plan. The plan arises from the Zone Implementation Plan (ZIP) developed by the Hurunui-Waiau Zone Committee under the Canterbury Water Management Strategy.

How to build a world class play-wave

Tony Ward-Holmes provides a history lesson on the creation of the Hawea playwave. A slightly different version was originally published in NZ Canoeing 13.1, p8-10.

Building a play-wave seems easy at first thought. You need some water for a start, and some gradient to make that water flow. To shape a wave you need a ramp or a constriction to speed up the water, preferably both. An eddy or two are needed too… a one-shot wave isn’t much use… and Bob’s your uncle, right?

RMA reforms serious concern to kayakers

Improving our resource management system cover

"Proposed RMA reforms are of serious concern to kayakers and any other person that relaxes and recreates in the outdoors. The government's proposed reforms for the Resource Management Act and freshwater management pose a real threat to water-based recreation," says Whitewater NZ President Matthew Bennett in a media statement released yesterday. "They put at risk New Zealanders' values and quality of life."

The discussion document "Improving our resource management system" (PDF, 4.4MB) proposes to remove clauses protecting recreational amenity and add new requirements to provide for "renewable energy" and "provision of infrastructure."

RMA reform vs recreation

Action | Background | Resources

The National Goverment has released a discussion paper "Improving our resource management system" (PDF, 4.4MB). The document aims to improve the resource management system by increasing predictability and removing cost. While many of the changes are of a technical nature, the sum total of changes seriously disadvantage recreational stakeholders.

Update on Ngaruroro River WCO application

Fish and Game New Zealand are working to prepare a Water Conservation Order (WCO) application for the Ngaruroro River in Hawke's Bay from source to sea.

Hawea Whitewater Enhancement Project nears completion

[Updated: 13 December] On Thursday 29 November, some Otago kayakers enjoyed test flows on the Scott Shipley-designed course on the Hawea River. Several more weeks of commissioning work are anticipated. The Hawea Whitewater Enhancement Project is an outcome of the negotiations around Contact Energy's resource consents as mitigation for the loss of recreational amenity resulting from the Clyde dam, and in particular the drowning of rapids at Bannockburn, Cromwell Gap and the world-class Sargood's Weir.

Hurunui Water Project seeks Waitohi consents

The Hurunui Water Project has applied for resource consents for a revised and expanded hydro and irrigation scheme focussed on the Waitohi River. Previous plans proposed an 85m dam on the South Branch of the Hurunui River and a weir on the exit from Lake Sumner.

Whitewater NZ joins Water Conservation Campaign

Whitewater New Zealand has joined Fish and Game and other recreation and environmental groups in launching a campaign to raise public awareness of river protection in New Zealand. The campaign www.OutstandingRivers.org.nz aims to publicise Water Conservation Orders (WCOs) already granted on some of New Zealand’s outstanding rivers and to support strengthening WCO protection.

Mokihinui recommended for Kahurangi National Park

The Greymouth Star reports the West Coast Conservation Board has voted to request inclusion of the Mōkihinui River in the Kahurangi National Park.

Westpower reactivates Waitaha hydro scheme

Counter to the trend of recent cancellations of hydro projects, Westpower has reactivated plans to develop hydro on the Waitaha River. The scheme was first announced in 2007. WestPower is holding public information days: 3.30 - 7.30pm, Tuesday 12th June, Harihari Motor Inn, Main Road, Harihari. 3.30 - 7.30pm, Wednesday 13th June, St John Station, 134 Stafford Street, Hokitika.

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