Catchment management

Managing freshwater at a catchment level

Catchments are areas of land that drain water from the top of surrounding hills down into a river, lake, an estuary or the open coast.

What happens on land in a catchment can impact on water quality in the river, and ultimately our coast. It can also affect the amount of water in rivers and lakes.

Catchment-scale management can be an effective way to improve fresh and coastal water, but it’s expensive and time-consuming (and not always necessary).

We’ve focussed our efforts on the high-priority catchments to create more localised management approaches.

Catchment plans – local solutions

We have worked with communities in several ‘priority’ catchments in Northland to develop catchment plans to better manage freshwater.

Local catchment groups (made up of representatives from tangata whenua, community, industry, district councils, Department of Conservation and Northland Fish and Game Council) developed these catchment plans that focus on freshwater management.

Read the catchment plans

The catchment plans are non-statutory documents. However, the plans do identify localised rules that have been included in catchment specific sections of the Proposed Regional Plan for Northland. 

Find the Proposed Regional Plan for Northland

Find key documents for our priority catchments in our Resource Library