Councillor monthly report April 2022

My Councillor report covers the period from 8 March to 5 April.  It has been prepared for the April business meetings of the Waitematā, Waiheke and Aotea Great Barrier Local Boards.

The purpose of my report is to detail my main activities and to share information with the public and local boards in my ward regarding governing body decisions, my attendance at events, regional consultations, media updates and key issues.


  • At Wynyard Quarter with the Cr Richard Hills doing a final shout out to give feedback on the Annual budget

    Deputy Chair, Environment and Climate Change Committee (photo right with the Chair Richard Hills doing a final shout out to give feedback on the Annual budget)

  • Co-Chair, Hauraki Gulf Forum
  • Member, Auckland City Centre Advisory Board (ACCAB)
  • Board Member, LGNZ National Council and Auckland Zone co-chair
  • Member, Auckland Domain Committee
  • Member, Appointments and Performance Review Committee
  • Member, Joint Governance Working Party
  • Member, Climate Political Reference Group
  • Member, Waste Political Advisory Group
  • Member, Future Development Strategy steering group (new this year)


  • Public consultation on the Annual Budget 2022/23 closed on 28 March.
    • As part of the consultation process council held several webinars on Waste and Climate where I was a panel member.
    • I attended the Pasifika Fono, an online forum for Pasifika community members to give feedback.
    • I also attended presentations by regional stakeholders.

Planning Committee

  • Helicopter activity – Resolutions from the Aotea/ Great Barrier, Waiheke and Waitematā and Local Boards.
  • The report due to go to the Planning Committee 30/03 has been deferred until May.
  • Cr Darby and I requested that a Helicopter Practice Note regarding the relevant provisions and considerations of the Auckland Unitary Plan and the Hauraki Gulf Islands be developed by the Resource Consents team.
  • Auckland Transport’s parking strategy was endorsed to go out for consultation (Good for Auckland parking: my speaking notes in support).
  • NPS-UD – The committee endorsed public consultation on the pre-notification engagement. The timeline is to be confirmed.

Environment and Climate Change Committee

  • The committee adopted a new Water Strategy for Auckland. The vision of the strategy is “te mauri o te wai o Tāmaki Makaurau, the life-sustaining capacity of Auckland’s water, is protected and enhanced”.
    • The strategy is designed to guide the council group in relation to its responsibilities and aspirations for water over the next 30 years.
  • The meeting was also an opportunity to acknowledge the death of young bike rider Levi James and to have, a heartfelt discussion that brought home the costs of delaying “genuine streets for people” ( Our Auckland: Auckland Council launches Ngā Tiriti Ngangahau – The Vibrant Streets Programme).
  • Half price public transport fares started on 1 April for three months. However, unfortunately the price cut excludes the Waiheke ferries because the route is not a contracted service within PTOM.  I am supporting the local board in the on-going fight to bring Waiheke in line with PT fares across Auckland.

On-line meetings continue including the Waiheke Community Forum, Local Board meetings and all workshops and committee meetings.

City Centre Safety

Safety in the city centre is an on-going concern.  I attended a Friday night “walkabout” with new Acting Area Commander and the Mayor with Cr Darby of some of the hot spots (more details below)


I attended as a member of LGNZ’s National Council, the Local Government/Central Government Forum Plenary Session on 1 April chaired by the PM.  The theme for this year’s forum was Working together in a time of major change.

The Auckland Arts Festival

The festival went ahead with a limited programme due to current covid restrictions. I was fortunate to see Live Cinema: The Little Shop of Horrors – Lockdown edition online at the invite of the festival.

City Centre Resilience

The resilience of the city centre has faced one of its toughest tests in recent years due to COVID-19, and efforts are being made by many organisations including Heart of the City, Britomart, Auckland Arts Festival, NZ Fashion Museum, Auckland Council and city centre businesses to bring back its mojo. (Our Auckland: City centre dresses up for fashion shoot)

Myers Park

Work will begin in April to update the Myers Park underpass  This project has been a decade in the making so I’m very excited to see it go ahead.

Hauraki Gulf Forum

The Hauraki Gulf Forum submitted in favour of a complete closure of the Hauraki Gulf’s scallop fishery. We also want to see scallop dredging gone for good.  The Minister’s decision on 29 March to close the scallop fisheries is a big step forward but concerningly still leaves open two areas of the Gulf to commercial and recreational dredging. (Press release: Partial closure of Hauraki Gulf scallop fishery puts Hauturu/Little Barrier at risk)

Key decisions from the Committees of the Whole 

The minutes for all meetings are available on the Auckland Council website. The following is intended as a summary only of key decisions.

Environment and Climate Change Committee – 10/03/22

  • adopted the Auckland Water Strategy
  • approved the “Too Much Water – A statement of Auckland Council’s current role and direction” as an accurate representation of council’s current response to the water-related impacts of climate change
  • approved the Whangaparāoa Pilot Shoreline Adaptation Plan
  • endorsed the proposed Regional Streets for People projects for management and delivery by Auckland Transport, on behalf of Auckland Council. (Now named Ngā Tiriti Ngangahau – The Vibrant Streets Programme see Attachment 1)
  • approved the Auckland Council submission to the Department of Conservation on the proposed Hākaimangō-Matiatia marine reserve application, northwest Waiheke Island (subject to minor editorial changes)
  • approved the forward work programme as agreed to at the meeting, to October 2022 including a new item added at my request to develop berm planting guidelines.

Finance and Performance Committee – 17/03/22

  • received a presentation from Eden Park Trust Board
  • confirmed the 16 July 2020 approval to dispose of 4 Blomfield Spa, Takapuna as it is not required to be retained by council for open space or recreational purposes
  • received the Auckland Council Group and Auckland Council quarterly performance reports for the six months ended 31 December 2021, noting that the results for the six months ended 31 December 2021, confirm many of the pressures anticipated in our Recovery Budget.

Council Controlled Organisation Oversight Committee – 22/03/22

  • received the 2021/2022 second quarter reports of the substantive Council-controlled Organisations and Ports of Auckland Limited
  • approved an amendment to the Watercare Services Limited constitution to remove the restriction on directors serving more than three consecutive terms
  • received update on the implementation programme for the Council-controlled Organisations Review
  • agreed to receive a verbal update in relation to the Auckland Unlimited report: Reimagining Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland: harnessing the region’s potential
  • Considered the agenda item “Defining Auckland Council’s Ownership Objectives for the Ports of Auckland Limited” as confidential due to risks that publicising it may prejudice or disadvantage council’s commercial activities

Governing Body – 24/03/22

  • On behalf of council Fa’anana Efeso Collins and I received the Save our Sands petition

    Accepted a petition from Jessie Stanley relating to Sand Mining from the Pakiri and Mangawhai Embayment

  • unanimously supported the Notice of Motion of Councillor Josephine Bartley to support the proposed private members’ bill: Sale and Supply of Alcohol (Harm Minimisation) Amendment Bill
  • Governing Body meeting during the presentation by MP Chlöe Swarbrick in support of Cr Bartley’s Notice of Motion Notice of Motion of Councillor to support the proposed private members’ bill

    Agreed to timeline for consultation on Māori representation in local government, noting that feedback from the engagement with mana whenua and mataawaka, will be reported to the August 2022 meeting of the Governing Body.

 Planning Committee – 31/03/22

  • endorsed the Draft Auckland Parking Strategy 2022 for public consultation in April 2022
  • Made a series of decision in response to the government’s National Policy Station Urban Development (NPS-UD) including:
    1. endorsed the further investigation of changes to the Auckland Unitary Plan and the Auckland District Plan (Hauraki Gulf Islands Section) to address issues arising from the mandatory removal of parking minimum
    2. endorsed the further investigation of changes to the Auckland Unitary Plan to:
    3. i)           introduce planning provisions for residential private ways to achieve better quality outcomes
    4. ii)         amend the zone provisions to:
  • enable building heights of least six storeys in walkable catchments as required by the Policy 3(c) of the National Policy Statement on Urban Development
  • incorporate the Medium Density Residential Standards in the relevant residential zones, as required by the Resource Management (Enabling Housing Supply and Other Matters) Amendment Act 2021
  • provide for quality-built environment outcomes in residential areas of Auckland as discussed in the agenda report.
  • approved the following policy direction for implementing Policy 3(a) in the NPS-UD relating to the city centre:
  • i)       Fewer, simpler, more targeted controls
  • ii)      Protecting sunlight and daylight to open spaces
  • iii)     Protecting amenity and retaining the “human scale” of streets
  • iv)     Enabling tall slender towers with space between them to allow sunlight, daylight and views to permeate the city centre
  • v)      Protecting local and regionally significant views
  • vi)     Protecting the outcomes achieved by the existing city centre precincts
  • vii)    Protecting the relationship between the city centre and the Waitemata Harbour
  • viii)   Protecting historic heritage in the city centre
  • ix)     Promoting climate change resilience.
  • approved in principle the removal of the general building height and floor area ratio standards in the city centre, and the application of alternative built form standards in line with the principles set out above.
  • endorsed “Thriving Town Centres – Guidance for urban regeneration in Tāmaki Makaurau / Auckland” (Attachment A of the agenda report) as a guidance document for Eke Panuku.
  • In confidential the Committee endorsed the Auckland Council’s preliminary response to the NPS UD for pre-notification engagement. The timeframe for this engagement is not yet confirmed.

Note: After 11 hours the committee was closed with agreement to defer the Auckland Cycling and Micro mobility Programme Business Case and the report responding to resolutions from the Aotea/Great Barrier, Waiheke and Waitematā Local Boards regarding concerns about helicopter activity to the next Planning Committee meeting

City Centre Safety

The visibility of crime and anti-social behaviour and the perception of safety are ongoing issues in the city centre brought about by several factors including lockdowns, the emptying out of people (workers, international students etc) with eyes on the street, and emergency accommodation bringing new people into the city centre with no place to go during the day.

The City Centre Community Safety Taskforce led by council’s community team has been given additional resourcing and is working on several actions across multiple agencies including Heart of the City, residents, MSD and the Police. At the last meeting on 25 March participants reported the city centre has turned the corner and things are improving.  We are likely to see further improvements as university students return from 4 May and restrictions are lifted.

Meeting the beat Police on Fort St during a Friday night “walkabout” with the Acting Area Commander, the Mayor and Cr Darby of city centre hot spots

Also, on 25 March I attended a Friday night “walkabout” with the Acting Area Commander, the Mayor and Cr Darby of city centre hot spots.  What we heard is that police resourcing has ramped up since the end of MIQ and the worst of the outbreak that had a big impact on staffing numbers covering shift work.  The Area Commander has introduced beat police who are out in the city centre on foot and in patrol cars.  Fort St is one problem area that has been a focus of operations.

In response to requests for the return of a city centre police station the Commander explained that the way people now interact with the police and contact the police makes a bricks and mortar police station unnecessary and not a good use of resources.  For example, people will use their own phone on the spot rather than run to a police station. Police can now gather evidence and respond in lots of different ways backed up by units in patrol cars and the eagle helicopter.

A police station might be a visible way of giving people comfort that the police are actively working on crime, but it doesn’t serve the same purpose as it once did in terms of how police can effectively respond and how the police can be contacted.

Following the walkabout, we have followed up on the need to improve the design of the Fort St area through a CPTED review.   This is being worked on by Council and Auckland Transport.  Te Komititanga, Wynyard Quarter and Vincent Street are areas I have also been focused on following concerns raised by residents.

On Vincent St I have secured the placement of physical barriers to deter illegal parking. The rocks have been funded from the city centre targeted rate.

Rocks provide a physical barrier to deter parking on Vincent St, City Centre, Auckland

Councillor monthly report December 2021

General update 

My Councillor report covers the period from 6 November to 6 December 2021.  It has been prepared for the December business meetings of the Waitematā, Waiheke and Aotea Great Barrier Local Boards.

The purpose of my report is to detail my main activities and to share information with the public and local boards in my ward regarding governing body decisions, my attendance at events, regional consultations, media updates and key issues. This is my final report for 2021.


  • Deputy Chair, Environment and Climate Change Committee
  • Co-Chair, Hauraki Gulf Forum
  • Member, Auckland City Centre Advisory Board (ACCAB)
  • Board Member, LGNZ National Council and Auckland Zone co-chair
  • Member, Auckland Domain Committee
  • Member, Appointments and Performance Review Committee
  • Member, Joint Governance Working Party
  • Member, Climate Political Reference Group
  • Member, Waste Political Advisory Group
  • All Councillors are members of the Planning, CCO Oversight, Finance & Performance and the Parks, Arts, Community and Events Committees


  • At the time of writing this report, Auckland has emerged from 107 days of lockdown. On December 3rd, Auckland entered the Covid-19 Protection Framework at the Red setting. At Red setting, all Council’s staffed services and facilities will require the use of vaccination passes until at least 17 January 2022. All Council meetings and workshops are continuing online until the end of the year.
  • I was acting Chair of the Environment and Climate Change Committee meetings during November and chaired the final Committee meeting of the year on 2 December
  • Transport Emissions Reduction Plan progress report received at the meeting confirmed Auckland’s emission are not remotely tracking in line with the target to reduce emissions by 50 percent by 2030.
  • Major pieces of the work progressed during the month include adoption of the Age-Friendly Tamaki Makaurau Action Plan, Council’s submission on the Enabling Housing Supply Bill, Council’s submission on Te hau mārohi ki anamata – Transitioning to a low-emissions and climate-resilient future (I was a signatory to the submission), adoption of the Water Strategy Framework and the Annual Budget 2022/23 Mayoral Proposal with a billion-dollar climate action package was announced (it was unanimously supported to go out for consultation at the Governing Body meeting on 8 December)
  • Consultation opened on 3 December seeking Aucklander’s views on how the government might set up a new water entity for Auckland (and the northern councils). Feedback on the Three Waters Reform is open until 19 December.
  • A groundbreaking new poll was released showing huge public support for measures to protect and restore the Hauraki Gulf, Tīkapa Moana, Te Moananui-ā-Toi.

It has been a demanding year dominated by the pandemic response and an extensive lockdown. I’m sure everyone is looking forward to a rest and a fresh start to 2022. Ngā mihi o te wā season’s greetings ki a koutou.

Governing Body meetings – Key decisions 

The minutes for all meetings are available on the Auckland Council website. The following is intended as a summary only of key decisions.

On 11 November the Parks, Arts, Community and Events Committee

  • Received a presentation on Sport and Recreation Facilities Investment Fund 2021/2022 and approved $300,000 from the 2021/2022 Sport and Recreation Facility Investment Fund to be managed by Community Facilities as part of a targeted sports field investment programme.
  • Received the annual Auckland Council Group Māori Outcomes Report: Te Pūrongo a Te Kaunihera o Tāmaki Makaurau Ngā Huanga Māori 2020-2021
  • Endorsed the Te Kete Rukuruku programme and process for Māori naming of regional parks, noting that it supports the visibility of te reo Māori and seeks to capture and tell the unique stories of Tāmaki Makaurau.
  • Adopted the Tāmaki tauawhi kaumātua – Age-friendly Tāmaki Makaurau / Auckland Action Plan.
  • Received the indicative business case for aquatic provision in Albert-Eden, and agreed that no further investigation of investment options to maintain aquatic services in the Albert-Eden Local Board area as part of a detailed business case be undertaken.

On 23 November the Council Controlled Organisations Oversight Committee

  • Received the 2021/2022 first quarter reports of the substantive Council-controlled Organisations and Ports of Auckland Limited
  • Received the update on the implementation programme for the Council-controlled Organisations Review
  • Considered under confidentiality the Unsolicited Bid Guidelines – Report back of bid

On 25 November the Governing Body

  • Received a COVID-19 briefing and Auckland Emergency Management status update from Phil Wilson, Acting Controller Auckland Emergency Management
  • Adopted the recommended new Public Trading, Events and Filming Bylaw
  • Adopted the recommended amendments to Animal Management Bylaw 2015 and associated controls
  • Adopted the recommended amendments to Water Supply and Wastewater Network Bylaw 2015
  • Approved the transfer of the ex-Glenfield Bowling Club buildings at Ross Reserve, Glenfield to Pest Free Kaipātiki Restoration Society.

On 30 November the Planning Committee

  • Received a presentation from the Herne Bay Residents Association Inc about the nuisance caused by helipads (I have also received a substantial number of emails from Waiheke on this matter). I have confirmed that I share the community’s concern around the environmental and social impact of helicopter landings and take-offs in residential areas. I am looking at what follow-up action to amend the Unitary Plan can be taken in the new year
  • Endorsed Eke Panuku as the lead agency for the implementation of the City Centre Masterplan 2020, by adding the city centre to the Eke Panuku Waterfront Transform location.

On 2 December the Environment and Climate Change Committee

  • Adopted the Auckland Water Strategy Framework as the core content for a new Auckland Water Strategy brought to committee for consideration and adoption in the first half of 2022.
  • Received a progress update on the Transport Emissions Reduction Plan. The following is the resolution in full as it is a significant piece of work and the Committee supported the early implementation of actions. I added e) iv) as a chairs recommendation to progress work by AT to leverage renewals to reduce emissions and realise co-benefits from safer streets.

That the Environment and Climate Change Committee:

a)      tuhi /note the progress update provided on the Transport Emissions Reduction Plan, in particular the scale of the challenge to meet Auckland’s transport emissions reduction target and that every available lever will have to be pulled as hard as possible to meet that target

b)      tuhi /note the emphasis that Auckland Transport is already placing on climate change

c)      tuhi /note that mode shift is the most powerful lever for reducing transport emissions, and that some action can be taken in advance of having an emission reduction pathway endorsed

d)      request Auckland Council staff to progress the following actions, and to report back to the Environment and Climate Change Committee in March 2022 with a progress update:

i)an investigation into council’s own corporate mobility to ensure alignment with the Transport Emissions Reduction Plan, which would cover, amongst other things, the provision of corporate car parking

ii)further and more detailed research into all people’s willingness and ability to change travel behaviour, taking note of the equity implications of mode shift, the barriers that people face, and the importance of a just transition

iii)          an investigation into a methodology and feasibility of a region-wide spatial assessment of access via walking, cycling and public transport

e)      Requested Auckland Transport and Auckland Council staff jointly progress the following for early delivery and report back to the Transport Emissions Reference Group with a progress update in March 2022:

i)development of a public communications campaign on climate change to present a vision of a low carbon transport system and build momentum for action

ii)a tactical behavioural change programme focused on mode shift to public transport and active modes, for implementation as soon as possible

iii)  work to ensure that all capital and renewals projects on corridors designated as part of the Future Connect active modes strategic networks include safe walking, cycling and micro-mobility infrastructure

iv)    the use of the renewals programme to deliver improved outcomes for sustainable transport modes, including a summary of work already underway, any impediments to taking this approach across the entire renewals programme, and the actions required to overcome these impediments

v)the development of a pipeline of active and public transport projects that could be ready for delivery to capitalise on any potential funding injection from central government

vi)an investigation into the feasibility of different options of public transport fare reductions for particular groups in advance of Government providing further details on its commitment to reducing public transport fares

vii)     an assessment of how the faster roll-out of the public transport related minor infrastructure programme could be resourced

  • Received the Te Tāruke-ā-Tāwhiri: Auckland’s Climate Plan Progress Report, November 2021 and noted despite the progress being made, as shown in the Progress Report, Auckland’s emission are not remotely tracking in line with the target to reduce emissions by 50 percent by 2030 and that work on the Transport Emissions Reduction Plan shows the stark reality of the scale of the challenge and the level of intervention required and that more work and investment will be required
  • Allocated Waste Minimisation and Innovation Fund, and Regional Environment and Natural Heritage grants

On 2 December the Extraordinary Parks, Arts, Community and Events Committee

Other meetings 6 November to 6 December 2021 

  • On 8 November I attended a CCO Oversight Committee briefing from Auckland Unlimited.
  • On 9 November I chaired the Waste Advisory Political Group.
  • On 10 November I attended the Waiheke Community Forum where the forum received a presentation from Living Waters on emergency accommodation.
  • On 12 November I attended
    • LGNZ Sector update for Mayors, Chairs and Chief Executives.
    • Staff briefing on the Wai Horotiu Queen Street project
    • Meeting with Minister David Parker and all Auckland Councillors where RMA Reform, Taxation Bill, and a ban on public sale and use of fireworks (not supported by the Minister) were discussed.
  • On 16 November I presented my monthly councillor report to the Waitematā Local Board business meeting.
  • Also on 16 November I attended a CCO Oversight Committee briefing from Eke Panuku.
  • On 17 November I attended an extraordinary business meeting of the Waiheke Local Board.
  • On 18 November I received a presentation from Seniors Climate Action Network called ‘Thriving within Planetary Boundaries – A Framework for Aotearoa/NZ – Net Zero Emissions by 2030’
  • On 22 November I chaired the meeting of the Climate Political Reference Group.
  • Advisory Panel co-chairs and Governing Body members

    Also on 22 November I attended a meeting of the Advisory Panel co-chairs and Governing Body members where the following were discussed:

    • Recovery and resilience/communities living with covid
    • Climate change and sustainability
    • Diversity in employment and leadership including civic participation in elections
  • On 24 November I presented my monthly councillor report to the Waiheke Local Board business meeting.
  • On 25 November I attended
    • meeting with AT’s Connected Communities Team regarding and received an update on plans for Great North Road.
    • A catch up with Waikehe Local Board members.
    • A meeting with Waka Kotahi representatives to receive an update on Newton Road.
  • On 3 December I attended the LGNZ National Council meeting.
  • On 6 December I attended the Governing Body / Independent Māori Statutory Board joint meeting and the joint Governing Body / Local Board Chairs meeting

Event highlights – all online!

  • Aotea GBI Schools Marine project presenting to an audience of over 100 stakeholders from the island and beyond

    On 12 November I was a guest speaker at the Grey Lynn Residents Association AGM

  • On 19 November I was a presenter at the Wynyard Quarter Neighbours’ Forum celebrating 10 years of Wynyard Quarter (My speech is attached to my report on the local board agenda).
  • On 25 November I attended the Mayoral Conservation Awards as a judge and presented the Penny Hulse Supreme Environmental Award to Aotea GBI Schools Marine project.
  • On 30 November attended Auckland Conversations – Ka hao te rangatahi: The new net goes fishing
  • On 3 December I gave the opening address at the Enviroschools Celebrations for 2021 ‘Papatuanuku is breathing’. (My speech is attached to my report on the local board agenda)
  • On 6 December I attended the Three Waters webinar consultation event

Hauraki Gulf Forum

A groundbreaking new poll was released showing huge public support for measures to protect and restore the Hauraki Gulf, Tīkapa Moana, Te Moananui-ā-Toi. The poll of 1020 respondents was conducted by Horizon Research from 27 September to 17 October 2021. Respondents were asked whether the Gulf was important to them, what they valued about it, and whether they supported or opposed the goals of the Hauraki Gulf Forum. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 3 percent. (Attachment 1).

On the same day as the Hauraki Gulf Forum meeting on 29 November we heard the wonderful news that the Minister of Oceans and Fisheries has approved Ngāti Pāoa’s request for a temporary closure around Waiheke. There is no take allowed of scallops, mussels, rock lobster or pāua from the closure area while the notice is in force. It comes into force from 1 December 2021.

The forum supported the rāhui laid down in January and has the ambitious goal of at least 30% marine protection for Tīkapa Moana Te Moananui-ā-Toi.

Projecting and enhancing te mauri o te wai

Update on Auckland’s water strategy

 Watercare, New Zealand’s largest company in the water and wastewater industry and a Council Controlled Organisation, has been extremely good at supplying drinking water of a very high standard to people across Auckland.  The amalgamation of Auckland’s former councils into the Supercity standardised systems and controls with the benefits of efficiencies at scale.  It put Watercare on a path of planning for growth but with a corresponding increase in water consumption which didn’t create the right incentives to encourage water savings or alternative sources of water supply such as rain tanks.

As Aucklanders have demonstrated in the last year in response to the severe drought, we are in fact collectively capable of saving tens of millions of litres of water a day without affecting the quality of our take.  Since restrictions were introduced in May 2020, Aucklanders have saved about 15 billion litres of water. In a climate emergency we must be as ambitious  as possible in lowering per-capita demand for water to manage against the increased risk of water insecurity.

Amalgamation in 2010 also meant we lost the best of what former council’s were achieving with best practice water savings.   The former Waitakere City Council’s Water Strategy was all about reducing water use, rolling out water tanks, rewarding low use homes, supporting innovation and holding Watercare to account to invest in infrastructure to ensure reduced water use.  However there’s now been a significant step forward in the demand management aspect of a new council water strategy 2021 – 2050, which aims to protect and enhance te mauri o te wai/the life supporting capacity of water, to create a future of water security for Tāmaki Makaurau.  Auckland Council and Watercare have jointly committed to adopting ambitious targets designed to reduce Aucklanders’ use of drinking water by 20 per cent over the next 30 years to create a city more resilient to impacts of drought and climate change.  One of the key principles used to develop the long-term water usage targets was ensuring we didn’t use water pricing as a lever to reduce customer demand. Instead, the aim is to educate people and create a more efficient and smarter system that allows for new technologies over time and which lead to behaviour change.

Demand management is just one aspect of council’s water strategy 2021 – 2050, which will cover stormwater, wastewater and freshwater networks and is designed to operate in tandem with infrastructure investment, including securing alternative drinking water sources for the long term.  Technology is a key component of the council group’s water demand management strategy, which includes installing smart meters in all homes by 2034, and investing in a smart, efficient network to monitor and keep leakage to no more than 13 per cent. In signing off on the new water consumption targets at the April Environment and Climate Change Committee we confirmed support for Watercare’s commitment to aim for no more than 11 per cent leakage.

Empowering Aucklanders to manage their demand for water takes a values-based approach to water management. The need for water consumption targets to drive reduced water use per capita is in recognition of Aucklanders’ desire to treasure water/wai as a taonga as the region grows.

First published in Ponsonby News May 2021