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Awatere Water Supply

Awatere Water Scheme (Birch) - Water Quality Information

Check the Alerts page for notices of planned shutdowns

Water Treatment

The Awatere Water Supply treatment plant can shutdown when the Black Birch Stream becomes dirty due to heavy rainfall. When this occurs it will take up to a week before there are sufficient chlorine levels throughout the network to reduce the risk from bacteria and viruses. 

At these times it is very important that all water used for drinking, preparation of food that will not be cooked, brushing of teeth and ice making should be boiled. Bringing water to the boil is sufficient for this purpose.

During these times of high turbidity the chlorine treatment becomes ineffective due to the additional organics in the water, and the MIOX treatment plant is shut down. During these events it is even more important to boil the water before consumption because of the increased risk from bacteria and protozoa in the water.

High turbidity in this water supply is usually generated by significant rain events, and it is currently expected that these types of rain events will occur four to five times a year.

The Awatere Water Scheme is a domestic and stock water supply, and is currently subject to a permanent Boil Water Notice. The water source is the Black Birch Stream catchment, and the water is collected through infiltration galleries under the stream bed. Since mid-2012 the water has been partially treated at Blairich by MIOX dosing, which uses a small amount of chlorine to inactivate bacteria such as E.coli. This treatment does not inactivate protozoa such as Giardia and Cryptosporidium.

Any questions please contact Erica Hobbs, Engineering Officer, or Stephen Rooney, Operations & Maintenance Engineer, Marlborough District Council, Ph: 03 520 7400.  


Water pressures in the Awatere are higher than most areas. All pipework within the properties and within households must be rated at 120 m (170 PSI). Seddon water pressure is reduced through Pressure Reducing Valves to around 70-80m (100-115 PSI), however in case of valve failure all internal piping must be rated at 120 m (170 PSI).

Water Rates and Charges

Awatere Water consumer meters are read every four months, in October, February and June. Water is billed via a combined charging structure of a uniform annual charge through Rates, which comes with an annual allowance of 275 m3 per year, and a volumetric charge for water consumption in excess of 275 m3 per year.

For Awatere water rates and charges, see page 169 of the 2016-17 Annual Plan (Part 4: Funding Impact Statement and Rates).

It is strongly recommended that consumers keep their own meter reading records, no longer than a month apart, so they can monitor their own consumption, know what is ‘normal consumption’ for them, and see sooner if they have an unidentified leak.

For water losses remissions policy, see page 308 of the Long Term Plan (Part 5: Policies).

PDF Document. Water Losses Remission form (1 Mb)

Fees and Forms

See Connection and Disconnection Fees for information on charges and Apply for a Connection or Disconnection for application forms.

Other Information 

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