Motueka/Riwaka Groundwater Quality

A report detailing the findings from the 2019 bore water sampling is now available.

The most recent groundwater quality survey was undertaken in October and November 2019. The reason for this work was to assess the state of the environment and identify any risks and compliance issues.

The report detailing the findings from the 2019 survey has been released. Download it here (pdf, 6.4 MB)

Potential public health risks identified

Due to its unconfined/semiconfined (leaky) nature, the aquifer underlying the Motueka/Riwaka Plains, does not meet the DWSNZ definition for secure groundwater. The 2019 survey identified various risks to the security of the groundwater quality in the Motueka/Riwaka Plains. These risks included:

  • Well/boreheads next to rubbish storage, stormwater drains and in low-lying areas
  • Chemical storage in the vicinity of well/boreheads
  • Historic driven pipes not sealed at ground level or appropriately sealed
  • Wells with unsealed well liners and inadequately fitting lids
  • Lack of records on individual bore supplies due to them being a permitted activity

The construction, take and use of bore water in the Tasman District area is governed by the Tasman Resource Management Plan (TRMP) in Chapter 16, Clause 16.12. Because they are historic, many of the private bores sampled in the 2019 survey did not meet with requirement in the TRMP regarding the prevention of surface water or other contamination entering the bore. 

Get details in the TRMP here. 

Borehead security was variable. For example, some had rubbish or chemicals stored near the bore. Some were located in low-lying areas or stormwater drains. Some bores were not appropriately sealed, potentially allowing access to birds and vermin, along with dust and dirt to enter into the bore. These poor practices were not intentional, but rather a lack of knowledge of the property owners.



Current groundwater quality status
How do the 2019 results compare to previous groundwater quality surveys?
I have a bore that I use for drinking water. What do I need to do?

More information

For more information about groundwater quality and security please refer to the Ministry of Health website.

If you have any questions about the survey itself, please email or phone 03 543 8680. Alternatively contact Joseph Thomas, Resource Scientist, on 03 543 8494.

If it is a health-related question, please contact the duty Council Environmental Health Officer or the Nelson Marlborough Public Health service.



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