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It's been a dry autumn - conserve water

 
This page contains information about the water level at the Whau Valley Dam that is below average for June and a reminder to our residents to please conserve water.
Updated: 5/06/2019 12:00 a.m.

​Since January less than a third of the usual amount of rain has fallen in the Whau Valley Dam catchment which feeds our District’s largest water treatment plant. 

“We have had only 181mm of rain over the past five months and the historical average for this time of year would be 611mm,” said Council Water Services Manager Andrew Venmore. 

“The dam has now fallen to 62 per cent full and we are expecting June to be quite dry this year. While we have enough water for winter, we are concerned that low rainfall over winter could see us going into the summer short of water compared to usual. 

“To reduce pressure on the dam we are taking more water from rivers, and now we are asking members of the public to step into “sensible with water” mode. 

“Usually about 80 per cent of the water treated at the plant comes from the dam, and 20 per cent comes from the Hātea River. This month we have stepped up the take to 30 per cent. We don’t want to go higher because the river needs to be kept healthy.” 

Mr Venmore said Council has guidelines that allocate different actions to different water levels at different times of the year. With the water level falling below 65% in May, coming into what is normally the rainy season, the approach is just to remind people of the need to be sensible with water.  

If the level falls below 60% in June, the next step in the process will be to ask consumers to begin voluntary water conservation. 

“We can delay a drop in the dam level for a while by using river water, especially as the season gets colder and wetter and people use less water for things like gardening, but we want to raise consciousness because we are always looking ahead to the future.” 

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