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The Opuha Dam. What Next ?. Opuha Dam Project. Where did Opuha Dam originate from ? Opuha site selected ECNZ withdrew in favour of Alpine Energy Agreement to construct entered into in 1995 Construction started late 1995 Dam breach occurred February 1997 Dam commissioned November 1998

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The Opuha Dam

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The opuha dam

The Opuha Dam

What Next ?


Opuha dam project

Opuha Dam Project

  • Where did Opuha Dam originate from ?

    • Opuha site selected

    • ECNZ withdrew in favour of Alpine Energy

    • Agreement to construct entered into in 1995

    • Construction started late 1995

    • Dam breach occurred February 1997

    • Dam commissioned November 1998

    • April 2007 Opuha Water Partnership


The opuha dam1

The Opuha Dam:

“Strong relationships between Local Iwi, Fish & Game, D.O.C., District Councils, ECAN and Irrigators”


Opuha dam

Opuha Dam

  • Priority of Water Releases 370 – 391.2m

    • 1stEnvironmental Flow

    • 2ndDomestic Use and Stock water

    • 3rdIrrigation

    • 4thElectricity Generation

  • Above 391.2m Generation Discretion

  • Generator

    • Capacity 7 mega watts driven by 15 cumec

    • Maximum Generation Month360k

    • Minimum Generation 0

  • In an average year the generator will operate for 55% of the time

  • Dam is operated by Contact Energy at Clyde – manned 24/7


Opuha dam1

Opuha Dam

  • 50m High 330 metres long

  • Maximum operating level 392.2m above sea level

  • Command area, 16000ha with 92% reliability

  • Storage is 91 million cubic metres

  • Lake at 392.2m is 710 Hectares

  • Minimum Operating Level 370m

  • It is expected that one year in 20 the lake will lower to 370m

  • 50% of Water in storage is for Irrigation and 50% is for Irrigation


Managing opuha daily management inspection observation

Managing OpuhaDaily Management Inspection Observation

  • Dam Safety – 24 hours

  • Flow Releases – 24 hours

  • Environmental Monitoring – 24 hours

  • Irrigation Output – Water orders daily

  • Lake Levels – Low and High as required


Costs to opuha annually compliance

Costs to Opuha AnnuallyCompliance

  • Administration$120k

  • Monitoring Charges$56k

  • Telemetry Charges$42k

  • Site Inspection$45k

  • Safety Management$100k

  • River Management$160k


Audited self management

Audited Self Management

  • Opportunity to Integrate Management with Individual Compliance

  • What are the Hurdles

    • Trust – Community, individuals, NGO’s, Ecan

    • Knowledge – Not all have the ability to standalone and manage

    • OWP has an infrastructure to manage so can do more

    • OWP is interested in taking cost out and improving performance

    • Ecan are interested in allowing autonomy

    • What are the instruments required to give OWP authority to manage


What does integrated consent management look like

What Does Integrated Consent Management look like?

  • New arrangements need support

  • Communities need to be happy and involved

  • Communities need to trust and influence

  • Regional Authority needs to trust

  • Institutional arrangements

  • Based around consent conditions that point to a civil contract eg OWP affiliation

  • How do you involve the community in the contract

  • What rules do you have?

  • What behavioural tools do you get to use?


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