Sustainable Water Management Analysis of the Selwyn Catchment Using Nested Adaptive Systems

Sustainable Water Management Analysis of the Selwyn Catchment Using Nested Adaptive Systems

B. Jenkins 

Waterways Centre for Freshwater Management, University of Canterbury and Lincoln University, Christchurch New Zealand

Page: 
1061-1072
|
DOI: 
https://doi.org/10.2495/SDP-V12-N6-1061-1072
Received: 
N/A
|
Accepted: 
N/A
|
Published: 
1 August 2017
| Citation

OPEN ACCESS

Abstract: 

The paper uses the approach of “nested adaptive systems” to establish an operational definition of sustainable management for the Selwyn catchment of the South Island of New Zealand. The Selwyn River is an undammed alluvial river that is under intense pressure for groundwater abstraction and water quality effects from land use intensification in its catchment. It is also subject to large flow fluc- tuations. Different spatial scales were determined for sustainability analysis. Using the adaptive cycle of exploitation, accumulation, disturbance/release and reorganisation, critical variables for maintaining the resilience of the catchment in relation to land and water use pressures and the thresholds of these critical variables for management interventions to achieve sustainable systems were identified. Also crucial for sustainability was the maintenance of the linkages between the different spatial scales. For each issue, the findings from the sustainability analysis are compared with current management approaches which are primarily derived from responses to effects-based assessment of new develop- ment proposals. The sustainability analysis identifies the need for more comprehensive management approaches.

Keywords: 

adaptive cycle, critical variables for resilience, nested spatial scales, sustainable irrigation system vulnerability

  References

[1] Gunderson, L.H. & Holling, C.S., Panarchy: Understanding Transformations in Human and Natural Systems, Island Press: Washington, 2002.

[2] Walker, B. & Salt, D., Resilience Thinking: Sustaining Ecosystems and People in a Changing World, Island Press: Washington, 2006.

[3] Holling, C.S. & Gunderson, L.H., Resilience and adaptive cycles (Chapter 2). Panarchy: Understanding Transformations in Human and Natural Systems, eds L.H. Gunderson & C.S. Holling, Island Press: Washington, pp. 25–62, 2002.

[4] Schumpeter, J., Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy, Routledge: London, 1942.

[5] Carpenter, S.R., Brock, W. & Hanson, P., Ecological and social dynamics in simple models of ecosystem management. Conservation Ecology, 3(2), 1999.

[6] Jenkins, B.R., Sustainable water management analysis using nested adaptive systems. WIT Transactions on Ecology and Environment, 196, pp. 39–52, 2015. https:/doi.org/10.2495/WRM150041

[7] Taylor, K.J.W. (ed), The Natural Resources of Lake Ellesmere (Te Waihora) and its Catchment, Canterbury Regional Council: Christchurch, 1996.

[8] Jenkins, B.R., From mitigation to sustainability: the evolution of incorporating environmental factors into development decisions in Australasia. International Journal of Sustainable Development and Planning, 11(6), pp. 920–929, 2016.

https:/doi.org/10.2495/SDP-V11-N6-920-929

[9] Larnad, S.T., Hicks, D.M., Schmidt, J., Davey, A.J.H., Dey, K., Scarsbrook, M., Arnscott, D.B. & Woods, R.A., The Selwyn River of New Zealand: a benchmark system for alluvial plain rivers. River Research and Applications, 24(1), pp. 1–21, 2007, available at: www.interscience.wiley.com. https:/doi.org/10.1002/rra.1054

[10] Larnad, S.T., The Selwyn River/Waikirikiri. Living Lakes Symposium, Lincoln University, Nov 7-8, 2013.

[11] Davey, A.J.H. & Kelly, D.J., Fish community responses to drying disturbances in an intermittent stream: a landscape perspective. Freshwater Biology, 52, pp. 1719–1733, 2007. https:/doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2427.2007.01800.x

[12] Environment Canterbury, Groundwater Allocation Limits: land-based recharge estimates. Report U04/97, Environment Canterbury: Christchurch, 2004.

[13] Environment Canterbury, ecan.govt.nz/services/online-services/monitoring/groundwater-allocation/zone-summary-reports/Pages/rakaia-selwyn.aspx.

[14] Canterbury Water, Selwyn Waihora ZIP Addendum, Environment Canterbury: Christchurch 2013.

[15] Joint Decision and Recommendation of Independent Commissioners 28 May 2010 in the matters of various applications by Central Plains Water Trust, 2010, available at: http://ecan.govt.nz/publications/Pages/cpw-decision.aspx.

[16] Bidwell, V. & Norton, N., Section 41C Report: Review of Nutrient and other Contamination Issues in the matter of various applications by Central Plains Water Trust to the Canterbury Regional Council, 2009, available at: http://ecan.govt.nz/get-involved/consent-projects/past-notifications/central-plains-water/Pages/section-41c-report.aspx.

[17] European Commission (2016) Introduction to the new EU Water Framework Directive, available at: http://ec.europa.eu/environment/water/water-framework/info/intro_en.htm. Accessed 24 April 2016.

[18] New Zealand Government, Section 5: Purpose, Resource Management Act, NZ Government: Wellington,1989.

[19] Te Waihora Co-Governance Group, Whakaora Te Waihora: Joint Cultural and Ecological Restoration Plan, Environment Canterbury: Christchurch, 2011, available at: http://ecan.govt.nz/publications/General/joint-cultural-ecological-restoration-plan-09-12-2011.pdf.