Water management

Water management is one of the themes we're working on. Here's a brief description of what we're doing and links to our published reports about water...

Our published reports and blog posts about water

Here's a list of work we've already produced about water:

Crown investment in freshwater clean-up

September 2019: We examined how the Ministry for the Environment administered four Crown freshwater clean-up funds for improving lakes, rivers, streams, and wetlands. Our primary objective was to assess whether Crown funding was being used effectively to improve freshwater quality.

Managing freshwater quality: Challenges and opportunities

September 2019: In 2011, we published a report on how effectively Waikato Regional Council, Taranaki Regional Council, Horizons Regional Council, and Environment Southland managed the effects of land use on freshwater quality in their regions. We found that the effectiveness of the four regional councils' approaches was variable. In this report, we assess the progress they have made since 2011.

Using different processes to protect marine environments

June 2019: This report looks at how two groups used two different processes that generated advice to Ministers for establishing marine protection, including marine reserves. Each group used a process that was different in terms of its origin, purpose, scope, and expected outcomes. We examined how inclusive, transparent, and well informed the processes were to identify lessons that could be applied to support the establishment of other marine protection measures.

Managing the supply of and demand for drinking water

September 2018: We audited three district councils (Horowhenua District Council, Kāpiti Coast District Council, and Manawatu District Council) and one city council (Palmerston North City Council) to understand the challenges they face in supplying drinking water to their communities. We looked at what these four councils are doing to influence demand for drinking water and whether they are taking an integrated approach, using financial and non-financial methods.

Monitoring how water is used for irrigation

May 2018: This is our first of seven audits that will look at how public organisations manage water. For this audit, we looked at how freshwater used for irrigation is tracked and measured. This included looking at how well water meter installation was managed, the quality of data collected from water meters, how the data was used, and whether this was leading to positive changes in the way water is used. We focused on five regional councils and one unitary council from six different regions.

Managing freshwater quality: Challenges for regional councils

September 2011: We carried out an audit to provide an independent view of how effectively four selected regional councils are managing and controlling land use and related activities for the purpose of maintaining and enhancing freshwater quality in their regions...

Planning to meet the forecast demand for drinking water in Auckland

August 2011: A letter from the Auditor-General to the Chief Executives of Auckland Council and Watercare Services Limited on governance issues and a report on our initial findings and recommendations for Watercare to consider when developing its long-term plans for asset management and for funding arrangements...

Marine Fisheries Management

December 1990, ISBN 0 477 02818 7. Jointly prepared by the Controller and Auditor-General and the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment.