All New Zealanders need access to SAFE drinking water.

New legislation called the Water Services Act 2021 has recently been enacted and came into effect on 15 November 2021.

The Act creates a new set of rules, standards, acceptable solutions and a new regime for managing and monitoring private and public drinking water supplies.

The reforms are a direct response to the Havelock North water contamination event which affected a large number of people in 2016.

Do you have your own private drinking water supply?

The new requirements affect many communities and businesses which have their own private drinking water supply. The reform package has created a new water services regulator called Taumata Arowai, who now monitors all drinking water supplies in New Zealand. Over the coming months and years, you will hear more and more from this regulator.

If you own or operate a water supply that is being used as drinking water by people outside of your own home, then you are a drinking water supplier and have responsibilities under the Act.

Is this you?

Drinking water suppliers include:

  • All private persons or entities that supply drinking water to two or more dwellings
  • All private persons or entities that supply drinking water to a commercial or other non-residential premises
  • Councils
  • A school or other small business supplied by a stream
  • A bore or other drinking water supply to a multi-dwelling building (such as multiple separate apartments contained in a single building).
  • A bore or spring supplying a commercial business or community hall
  • A bore or other drinking water supply to a group of residences within one rural property

Your New Requirements

Taumata Arowai requires you to ensure the following requirements from your water supply.

  • Provide safe, aesthetically acceptable drinking water that meets drinking water standards,
  • Register their drinking water supply with Taumata Arowai, and renew this registration annually,
  • Prepare various plans and strategies such as a source water risk management plan and a multi-barrier drinking water safety plan,
  • Ensure there is sufficient quantity of drinking water to support the ordinary needs of consumers,
  • Protect against risk of backflow, and meet other obligations if the supply is reticulated,
  • Install, maintain and conduct ongoing testing of any end-point treatment devices.

Do you have concerns about your water supply ?

You may have noticed any recent changes to the water you supply or have identified a problem that needs addressing now. Your responsibilities of providing safe water have always been there, however the penalties for not doing so are even greater with the duty of care of all suppliers introduced by the Water Services Act.

  • Has the amount of water you produce each day reduced?
  • Has the pressure dropped?
  • Has the colour of the water changed?
  • Have you or your customers noticed any taste and odour issues with the water?
  • Have any people connected to the water supply recently had vomiting, diarrhoea, gastroenteritis?
  • Do you need a plant audit?
  • Do you need assistance with your Water Safety Plan or compliance documentation?

GWE Consulting Engineers can provide advice and assistance with any of these issues and concerns. Contact our expert team TODAY.

We can help.

First of all, if you’re not sure if the new Act applies to you, then we can advise Free of Charge. As Drinking Water Experts, the team at GWE can advise on Water Treatment solutions and assist with the submission of a Water Safety Plan to Taumata Arowai.

Need to know more…

About the Reform

For more information on the Water Reforms, simply download our 12 page Guide.

About GWE

For more details of our Drinking Water credentials, download our Capability Statement.

About how it affects your business

Contact us to arrange a FREE 15 Minute consultation