Otago Swimming Targets

Consultation has concluded


Background

Earlier this year, we ran an online swimming survey (see Swimming Survey Map under Documents for results) to ask people where they swim in Otago, how they rated those swim sites and why. Popular swim sites are the Southern lakes and rivers of Central Otago, coastal areas around Dunedin, and North (Kakanui, Waikouaiti, Waianakarua, and Shag) and South (Pomahaka and Tokomairaro) Otago rivers.

The national swimming target for 2030 is that 80% of specified rivers and lakes* should meet health standards to be swimmable (** see definition of 'swimmable' below) and that 90% of specified waterways are swimmable by 2040. The draft Otago swimming targets aims to improve bacterial water quality in rivers and lakes, thereby contributing to the national swimming targets.


Draft Otago Swimming Targets

Table 1. below shows the proportion of Otago rivers and lakes that were classified as swimmable in 2017, along with the draft Otago swim targets for 2030 and 2040.


Table 1: Proposed and Current Proportion of Otago and Rivers and Lakes that are Swimmable

YearRiversLakes
2017 (Current)79%98%
2030 (Target)95%100%
2040 (Target)100%100%


* Under the NPSFM, swimming targets apply to specified waterways. These are rivers of fourth order or greater (i.e. Rivers that have at least four consecutive streams or rivers flowing into them), and lakes with a perimeter of 1.5km or greater.

** The National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management (NPSFM) defines 'swimmable' rivers and lakes based on the bacterial concentrations of Escherichia coli (E. coli) and cyanobacteria as outlined in Table 2. below.


Table 2: Swimmable Criteria for Rivers and Lakes***

Bacteria
Concentration
Rivers or Lakes Affected
Swimmable
E. coli

In regular sampling of E. coli, for at least half the time, the estimated risk is less than 1 in 1000 (0.1% risk).

Rivers and lakes
Yes
Cyanobacteria
Less than or equal to 1.8 cubic millimetres per litre of toxic cyanobacteria OR less than or equal to 10 cubic millimetres per litre of all cyanobactera.

LakesYes

*** As defined in Appendix 2 of the NPSFM.


Have Your Say

We want your feedback on the swimming targets. Let us know whether you agree with these targets or not. Below is a survey that will take less than five minutes to complete. We look forward to hearing what you think.



Background

Earlier this year, we ran an online swimming survey (see Swimming Survey Map under Documents for results) to ask people where they swim in Otago, how they rated those swim sites and why. Popular swim sites are the Southern lakes and rivers of Central Otago, coastal areas around Dunedin, and North (Kakanui, Waikouaiti, Waianakarua, and Shag) and South (Pomahaka and Tokomairaro) Otago rivers.

The national swimming target for 2030 is that 80% of specified rivers and lakes* should meet health standards to be swimmable (** see definition of 'swimmable' below) and that 90% of specified waterways are swimmable by 2040. The draft Otago swimming targets aims to improve bacterial water quality in rivers and lakes, thereby contributing to the national swimming targets.


Draft Otago Swimming Targets

Table 1. below shows the proportion of Otago rivers and lakes that were classified as swimmable in 2017, along with the draft Otago swim targets for 2030 and 2040.


Table 1: Proposed and Current Proportion of Otago and Rivers and Lakes that are Swimmable

YearRiversLakes
2017 (Current)79%98%
2030 (Target)95%100%
2040 (Target)100%100%


* Under the NPSFM, swimming targets apply to specified waterways. These are rivers of fourth order or greater (i.e. Rivers that have at least four consecutive streams or rivers flowing into them), and lakes with a perimeter of 1.5km or greater.

** The National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management (NPSFM) defines 'swimmable' rivers and lakes based on the bacterial concentrations of Escherichia coli (E. coli) and cyanobacteria as outlined in Table 2. below.


Table 2: Swimmable Criteria for Rivers and Lakes***

Bacteria
Concentration
Rivers or Lakes Affected
Swimmable
E. coli

In regular sampling of E. coli, for at least half the time, the estimated risk is less than 1 in 1000 (0.1% risk).

Rivers and lakes
Yes
Cyanobacteria
Less than or equal to 1.8 cubic millimetres per litre of toxic cyanobacteria OR less than or equal to 10 cubic millimetres per litre of all cyanobactera.

LakesYes

*** As defined in Appendix 2 of the NPSFM.


Have Your Say

We want your feedback on the swimming targets. Let us know whether you agree with these targets or not. Below is a survey that will take less than five minutes to complete. We look forward to hearing what you think.


  • CLOSED: This survey has concluded.

    Otago Swimming Targets Survey

    This survey should take less than five minutes to complete. 

    This survey should take less than five minutes to complete. 

    Consultation has concluded