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Co-governance and advisory groups

Technical and community panels have been established to inform our freshwater work.

We collaborate with others to maintain and improve our water resource for future generations. We listen to our communities and consider their values and priorities in our regional plans.

Rural and Environmental Sector Organisation Forum

We have set up this Forum of policy representatives from national organisations to provide early “without prejudice” advice to our Policy and Planning Team as we develop new Regional Policy Statement and Regional Natural Resources Plan policies and rules for freshwater and land management, to improve outcomes for freshwater (directed by the National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management 2020).  The group will also help us to communicate with their members during public engagement.  This Forum replaces the former Regional Water Advisory Panel.

Community groups

We’ve set up community groups in water management areas in Rangitāiki, Kaituna/Maketū and Pongakawa/Waitahanui catchments to help us make some important decisions about water in these areas.

The groups will help:

  • Identify local community values for freshwater.
  • Set local limits for water quality and quantity.
  • Develop solutions for managing water in their catchment.

Similar work will roll out in other Bay of Plenty catchments from 2018. 


Iwi and hapū are also involved in decision making and management of freshwater through co-governance groups, which are partnerships between iwi and local government. 

Te Maru o Kaituna River Authority

Te Maru o Kaituna River Authority is a co-governance partnership mandated to restore, protect and enhance the environmental, cultural and spiritual health and well-being of the Kaituna River. See more.

Rangitāiki River Forum

The Rangitāiki River Forum is a co-governance entity mandated to promote the protection and enhancement of the environmental, cultural, and spiritual health and wellbeing of the Rangitāiki River and its resources for the benefit of present and future generations. See more.

Territorial Local Authorities (TLA) Freshwater Collaboration Group

Through the Bay of Plenty Freshwater Collaboration Group; regional, district and city council staff that deliver water supply, wastewater, storm water, consenting, policy and other water-related community services meet quarterly to share information and respond to water management issues and opportunities of mutual interest.

The group includes members from Tauranga City Council, Whakatāne District Council, Rotorua Lakes Council, Western Bay of Plenty District Council, Kawerau District Council and Ōpōtiki District Council. They provide advice and recommendations to us on our work to implement the National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management (NPS).

Land Technical Advisory Group

A panel of agricultural experts and scientists has been providing independent advice on land-based nutrient management solutions for improving water quality in the Rotorua Lakes since 2014. As Rotorua Te Arawa Lakes Programme work is progressed, the Land TAG will expand its focus to wider land management issues across the Bay of Plenty region. 

Water Technical Advisory Group

For more than ten years a Water Quality Technical Advisory Group (WQTAG) has been in place to provide technical advice on lake science and management to the Rotorua Te Arawa Lakes Programme partners to help reach the water quality targets for each lake.

The purpose of the Group is to operate as an informal forum of experts on lake water quality problems, causes and solutions.