The five pillars of Water New Zealand

Our key focus is around four core priorities: provision of technical advice to industry and government, advocacy, skills development and training, along with membership support and communications. We do this through our five pillars.

Wai is wai

We aim to value and re-normalise Māori perspectives in the work we do through enabling culturally enhanced leadership and decision-making. Through our webinars, training courses, guides and articles in publications, we support our members and the wider sector to understand and give effect to Te Mana o te Wai in their work. Our Cultural Significance and Importance of Wai modules have been very popular with out members. Our goal is that the sector has a greater understanding of the Te Ao Māori world view of the environment and water and to put Te Mana o te Wai into practice in the work we do.

We support and aspire to uphold Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

Wai is Wai Upcoming Modules
27 Jul
$920.00 Members
$1,150.00 Non Members
12 Oct
$920.00 Members
$1,150.00 Non Members

Technical Advice

As an organisation, we share knowledge and guidance on existing and emerging issues. We work closely with regulators and undertake benchmark exercises including our annual National Performance Review (NPR) which compare drinking water, wastewater and stormwater service provision in Aotearoa New Zealand. The data in the NPR covers service utilities that reach 88 percent of the population. We also work with our members and use their expertise to produce a range of technical guides. Recent ones have included Navigating to Net Zero: Aotearoa's water sector low carbon journey. Our other technical guides cover a range of national level topics. Recent guides have included Carbon Accounting Guidelines for Wastewater Treatment: CH4 and N20 and Water Distribution Modelling. We ensure that members and the wider sector are kept up to date through our conferences, forums, opportunities to participate in special interest groups and that we cover these issues in our publications.

Technical Documents

Technical Guides

Workforce Training

Water New Zealand is working towards attracting more skilled workers to the three waters sector. The sector is projected to require an additional 5,800 to 9,300 FTE jobs between 2022 and 2051 to meet future needs. To support this effort, the organization is promoting competency and skills within the sector. We have developed five competency frameworks, including Drinking Water Treatment Operator, Drinking Water Distribution Operator, Wastewater Treatment Operator, Wastewater Network Operator, and Small Water Suppliers.

Additionally, many members are participating in the our Digital Badges program, which provides a basic understanding of the Three Waters sector and is helpful for those entering or already working in the sector. The program includes courses on drinking water, wastewater, stormwater, backflow, and sampling, with other badges in development.

Training Calendar

Training Courses


Our events provide a great opportunity for the water sector members to meet and share knowledge and expertise.

The Water New Zealand Conference and Expo, held every year, is one of the key events of the water sector calendar. Discussion is wide ranging - from reforms to innovative solutions and sharing and celebrating success.

Our Stormwater Conference and Expo takes place each May. In this conference, delegates and presenters discuss the latest solutions to address challenges such as climate change and extreme weather.

We also hold an annual Modelling Symposium which brings together modellers from all sectors of the water society. Our Backflow Conference, held once every two years, is a key event to help address challenges to maintaining healthy and safe water in the community.

Events Calendar

Upcoming Events
23 May


Stormwater Conference 2023

Draft programme has been released!

01 Aug


Drinking Water Protection Conference

Brought to you by the Water New Zealand Backflow Group

$690.00 Members
$977.50 Non Members
17 Oct


Water New Zealand Conference & Expo 2023

This year we will be at Tākina, Wellington’s new Convention and Exhibition Centre, 17 – 19 October 2023.


The range of critical water issues facing our sector means it is important to network and build effective relationships with central government officials and regulatory agencies. Water infrastructure represents many billions of dollars of assets and added value to the New Zealand economy. That's why we have a strong focus on relationships across the sector - with our members, Government and regulatory decision-makers and other industry bodies including overseas. We present at conferences, meetings and Select Committees. We produce documents, webinars, articles and training courses to promote the understanding of the water sector amongst the wider community. We also product a fortnightly email bulletin, Pipeline, and each year publish five issues of Water, a hard copy news and current issues journal covering water sector issues. Water also provides an important opportunity for business to get products and services in front of a targeted audience. If you are interested in finding out more about these opportunities contact our Advertising Manager: Debbie Laing.