Northland Strategic Irrigation Infrastructure Study
In late 2014, council allocated $75,000 from the IGR to undertake a 'Northland Strategic Irrigation Infrastructure Study', with a matching contribution from the Ministry for Primary Industries Irrigation Acceleration Fund. The purpose of the study was to undertake a high-level, region-wide study to identify the opportunity for irrigated agriculture to contribute to Northland's economic development. This work was also included in the Tai Tokerau Northland Economic Action Plan given the potential of irrigation infrastructure to lift the region's performance.
A key finding of the study was that further detailed work should focus on two 'clusters' – one in the region's mid-North (containing the Kaikohe, Kerikeri and Waimate North areas) and the other to the south in Kaipara (containing North Kaipara and Ruawai). Another important conclusion reached in the report was that other uses, such as public drinking supply and industrial demand, may be key to making a community based water storage scheme economically viable.
The study, completed in 2016, is available to download in four parts below.
Scoping of Irrigation Scheme Options in Northland
Following on from the Northland Strategic Irrigation Infrastructure Study, council commissioned a consortium led by Opus International to scope up some irrigation scheme options in the Kaipara and Mid-North cluster areas. This project was funded by a $165,000 contribution from council's IGR, with a matching contribution from Crown Irrigation Investments Limited.
The study, completed in July 2017, developed four scheme options: one in Kaipara and three in the mid-North area. At this stage none of the options appear overly attractive for private sector investment alone and would likely require public investment. Should any of the schemes proceed, the likely outcome will be a change in land use to horticultural crops such as kiwifruit and avocados rather than conversion to dairy.
The report is available to download in three parts below. (Please note the large file size of these documents).