Action underway to mitigate silt flow from Waihi Dam

Action underway to mitigate silt flow from Waihi Dam

Eastland Group and Hawkes Bay Regional Council representatives met yesterday to discuss Eastland Group’s options for mitigating the inflow of silt into the Waiau River, which has been occurring since gates on the Waihi Dam were damaged in November last year.

“The meeting was pragmatic and constructive,” said Liz Lambert, HBRC interim chief executive.

“The council is pleased that the Eastland Group has understood the significance and seriousness of the issue and that they are making every resource available to deal with its problem and to see the uncontrolled discharge of silt cease.”

Eastland Group chief executive Matt Todd said the company’s expert engineer was on site at the dam yesterday.

“His view is that we need to continue to work to get the dam’s three gates operational, but also that there might be some ways to lessen the silt currently seeping into the main river system. His report is likely to be with us early next week.

“This report will be provided to Hawke’s Bay Regional Council and together we will agree the way forward prior to any physical work taking place. Potentially, some of the work may require new or varied resource consents and the council has said they’re willing to fast track these. Our priority is to mitigate any silt discharge into the river.”

Mr Todd also said the company was contacting affected parties, especially farmers using river water for stock.