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Sunday, 18 March 2018 08:32 pm

Flood of submissions to DoC on Waitaha River

Nov 21st, 2016 | By | Category: Lead Story, News


The Morgan Gorge Photo – Kev England

The Department of Conservation has received 1680 public submissions after approving in principle a hydro scheme on the West Coast’s Waitaha River.

Westpower who owns and operates the electricity distribution network on the West Coast of the South Island has sought a DOC concession for a hydro scheme at the exit of Morgan Gorge on the Waitaha River.

The scheme involves redirecting water from the Waitaha River through a tunnel to a power station below the gorge and then returning the flow to the river 2.6 km downstream.

A weir and a 2 km access road would also be constructed as part of the proposal.

Forest and Bird has objected to the scheme saying it would have a devastating impact on the native animals and vegetation in the area.

A Facebook group has also been created called ‘Save the The Waitaha River’ and currently has over 1700 members.

A spokesperson for DOC said that information about the content of submissions will be available once the submissions have been summarised.

The hearing is set to commence on December 5 with 70 of the submitters indicating that they wish to speak.

Once the hearing has taken place and all submission have been considered, a final decision will be made by DOC in early 2017.

Click here for a video of kayakers in the Morgan Gorge on the Waitaha River.


Kayaking the Morgan Gorge Photo – Kev England


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