The MAJAC Trust application to amend the Buller River water conservation order

This page has the application by the MAJAC Trust to amend the Water Conservation (Buller River) Order 2001.

In the matter of the Resource Management Act 1991 and in the matter of an application to vary the Water Conservation (Buller River) Order 2001 pursuant to s216 Michael Anthony Talley, Graeme Peter Malone, James Rory Ryder and Guy Alexander Mannering as trustees of the Majac Trust  Applicant

To: The Minister for the Environment


1. Name and address of applicant:

The applicants are the trustees of the Majac Trust being:

Michael Anthony Talley;
Graeme Peter Malone;
James Rory Ryder; and
Guy Alexander Mannering
whose address for service is c/- of Gascoigne Wicks, 79 High Street, PO Box 2, Blenheim.

2. Background and Water Body Concerned:

2.1 The Water Conservation (Buller River) Order 2001 ("the Order") was made by Order in Council on 18 June 2001, notified in the Gazette on 21 June 2001 and came into force on 19 July 2001.

2.2 This application concerns only the parts of the Water Conservation Order which refer to the Gowan River. None of the other rivers referred to in the Water Conservation (Buller River) Order 2001, (including the Buller), will be affected by this application.

3. Nature of the Application

The applicants seek:

3.1 Approval to the following amendments to clause 8 of the Order:

3.1.1 Amend clause 8(3)(c) to read:

"(c) Subject to diversions and discharges permitted pursuant to clause 8(3)(d) hereof, any change in other flows permitted in the balance Gowan River, Item 10 of schedule 2, which are not permitted pursuant to clause 8(3)(d), must not be -

(i) greater than 15% of the naturally occurring instantaneous flow whenever that flow is 9 cumecs or more; or

(ii) greater than 5% of the naturally occurring instantaneous flow whenever that flow is less than 9 cumecs

3.1.2 Add a new clause 8(3)(d) to read:

(d) No diversion or discharge shall occur in the Gowan river within 2 kilometres of riverbed distance of either Lake Rotoroa or the confluence of the Buller and Gowan Rivers and otherwise diversion and discharge may only occur if:

(i) The naturally occurring instantaneous flow is 9 cumecs or more;

(ii) The full naturally occurring instantaneous flow is able to be restored by telemetry controls from time to time for periods of no less than one and a half hours to protect its rafting amenity."

3.2 Any alternative remedy which would allow resource consent to be granted to an application in the nature of that annexed hereto with respect to the Gowan River.

4. Reasons for Application:

a. Amending the wording of the Water Conservation Order to provide for the proposed development will both allow a hydro-electric power scheme to be developed adjacent to the river while avoiding any material impact on rafting by diverting only excess flows which exceed flow rates desirable for rafting and returning the diverted water to the river.

b. The needs of the community, and of primary and secondary industries for more secure electricity supplies, particularly in the top of the South Island, are such that low impact diversions of this nature to produce electricity are in the public interest.

c. The Water Conservation (Buller River) Order 2001 protects the Gowan River only for the purposes of rafting and for no other purpose - see clause 6(a) and Item 10 Schedule 2 of the Order.

d. The proposal outlined in the annexed draft application documents will not materially impact (and will in fact in some respects improve) the recreational values of the Gowan River for rafting in that it will ensure no water is diverted unless the river flows exceed 9 cumecs and also ensure that by telemetry controls full instantaneous flows can be reinstated for rafting if desired.

e. The granting of the application is otherwise in accordance with the Resource Management Act 1991 and will meet the purposes of that Act of allowing sustainable management of a valuable resource while mitigating any effect of that sustainable use of the resource.


(i) Draft Application for Resource Consents relevant to the diversion of portion of the Gowan River flows.

(ii) Accompanying video

(iii) Copy Water Conservation (Buller River) Order 2001

Dated this day of 2003


R D Crosby
Solicitor for the Applicants