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Improvement of waterways could take decades


It could be years before high nitrate levels drop in South Canterbury catchments, a groundwater scientist says.

According to the most recent Canterbury Water Management Strategy (CWMS) results, four out of the 10 water zones have high nitrate risk levels, including Orari-Temuka-Opihi-Pareora (OTOP) and Lower Waitaki-Coastal South Canterbury.

There is also another potential high-risk area near Ikawai, inland from Glenavy.

Environment Canterbury groundwater scientist Carl Hanson said there was a significant effort in Canterbury to manage and reduce nitrate levels in groundwater caused by more intensive farming over the past 20 years and more.  Read more