The Water Measurement and Reporting of Water Takes regulations were amended in 2020. The amended regulations apply to all resource consent holders that have a water take consent for a rate of 5 litres/second or greater. The amended regulations require water measurements to be taken every 15 minutes and records to be provided to the relevant council daily. So unless you really want to be out there recording data yourself and sending it to the council, you need to install telemetry to enable the data transfer to happen automatically.
To be compliant, all takes greater than or equal to 20 litres/second must have telemetry installed by 3rd September 2022 – only one month away. Even if you have telemetry installed, it’s worth checking with your service provider that the data is being sent to the council daily. As the consent holder, you are responsible for compliance. Takes greater than or equal to 10 litres/second must have telemetry installed by 3 September 2024 and takes greater than or equal to 5 litres/second must have telemetry by 3 September 2026.
What happens if you have no cellular coverage? There are options available for getting data out of remote areas, technology has improved considerably. Satellite data is probably the most well-known alternative option. The capital cost of the hardware has decreased over the last 5-10 years, meaning it could be a viable option. Other options include a radio link back to a cellular gateway site or radio link back to an ethernet gateway. Exemptions are available but will only be granted based on a cost/benefit analysis, i.e., an exemption may not be granted just because your existing service provider only currently offers a cellular option.
How is telemetry useful for you? Continuous data can be used to pick up poor performing bores e.g. if your flowrates are dropping year on year there may be an issue with your screen. Leaks and poor pump performance can also be picked up through flowmeter data. Accurate and easily accessible records will be useful when your consent is due for renewal. It’s a lot easier to prove you still need the same amount of water if you have the records to back this up.
Telemetered data will also give you the ability to set up alerts based on your consent limits. Your service provider should be able to set these up for you. Ideally, an alert would be based on 80-90% of your consent limit so you know before it becomes a compliance issue.
Talk to the team at Primary Insight if you have any flowmeter or telemetry questions or issues. We can install new sites and troubleshoot issues on existing sites.