East Coast Complex
The East Coast Complex (ECC) Freshwater Management Unit (FMU) is a grouping of catchments situated along Marlborough’s East Coast that enter the Pacific Ocean between the White Bluffs/Te Parinui o Whiti, south through to Willawa Point.
Feedback from the first round of community engagement strongly suggested that the northern section of this FMU should be included into the Awatere FMU. As of October 2023, council agrees with this change and while the FMU boundaries remain proposed awaiting feedback from tangata whenua, the northern part of the ECC FMU will be removed and incorporated into the Awatere FMU.
To the north is the Wairau FMU and to the west is the Awatere FMU, with the southern border being the regional authority boundary between Marlborough and the northern Kaikoura District. The FMU also contains Lake Grassmere, a saltwater lake used for commercial solar salt production, and Lake Elterwater which is within the Flaxbourne River catchment. The landscape of the northern half of the FMU is characterised by lowland hills and wide valleys, with the foothills of the Inland Kaikoura Range reaching heights of between 100 and 300m. Moving south, the topography increases in height and valleys become narrow and steep with peaks reaching between 1,000 to 1,300m in the Chalk Range on the FMU’s southern boundary.