Drinking-water

This section of the Ministry’s website contains guidance and information on drinking-water in New Zealand, including the Ministry’s work and initiatives on drinking-water in New Zealand and issues that may affect public health adversely.

Safe drinking-water is a necessity for good health. Ministry of Health engages with public health professionals and authorities to formulate policy and monitor procedures for achieving safe drinking-water supplies and effective sanitation in New Zealand.

View the latest Annual Report on Drinking-water Quality (2017-18).

Government announces new water regulation and regulator

The Government has announced a new regulatory framework for ensuring drinking water safety and improving environmental outcomes for wastewater and stormwater. The new system is to be overseen by dedicated Regulator to lead change and drive improvement.

The Minister for Health and the Minister for Local Government announced the new approach on 31 July 2019 and more information can be found on the Beehive website:

Havelock North Drinking-water Inquiry findings

Cabinet has approved the Government response to the inquiry into Havelock North drinking-water. Find out more about the response to the inquiry.

Three Waters Review

The Department of Internal Affairs has released the Three Waters (Drinking Water, Waste water and Stormwater) Regulation report on targeted stakeholder engagement, June 2019. 

The engagement programme during March and April focused on accessing water expertise across the various sectors including the health sector.  

The Three Waters Review team and the Ministry of Health Drinking Water Project team are grateful to all participants who took part in the targeted engagement workshops. 

The report indicates general in principle views of stakeholders. It also signals those areas where feedback has indicated the need for clarification or further work:

The Three Waters Review can be viewed on the Department of Internal Affairs website.

Register of drinking-water suppliers

Section 69J of the Health Act 1956 requires the Director-General of Health to maintain a register of specified drinking-water suppliers and specified self suppliers, and identifies the particulars that must be recorded in the register. The drinking-water register provides information about drinking-water suppliers and the types of supplies they manage.

The register can be viewed on the Institute of Environmental Science and Research Limited (ESR) website's Drinking-water Register for New Zealand.

Register of Recognised Laboratories for New Zealand

To demonstrate compliance with the New Zealand Drinking-Water Standards, water suppliers need to monitor the quality of their drinking-water by taking water samples and having them analysed. Section 69ZY of the Health Act 1956 requires the Director-General of Health to maintain a register of recognised laboratories that can analyse drinking-water, and identifies the particulars that must be recorded in the register.

The Register provides easily accessible information about the laboratories that have been assessed by IANZ and found to comply with either NZS/ISO/IEC 17025:1999 or the Ministry of Health Level 2 Criteria analytical laboratories.

The register can be viewed on the Institute of Environmental Science and Research Limited (ESR) website's Register of Recognised Laboratories.

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