The Government has announced a new grant designed to secure safe drinking water for much of the Chatham Islands to support its resilience to extreme weather events.
The announcement, made by Emergency Management Minister Kieran McAnulty, comes as the islands have been experiencing long dry periods, with many unable to connect to mains or council water supplies.
Roughly 20% of households on the islands most at risk from droughts will receive a 30,000-litre water tank and filtration system.
“Even though this is a relatively small-scale project, ensuring that a significant part of the community will have access to a clean and reliable water supply will make a big difference in the years to come,” McAnulty said.
“This is not just in money saved, but in better health outcomes and reduced environmental pressure on the Islands.”
McAnulty said that because of the islands’ remoteness, the community is particularly vulnerable to the effects of drought and other natural disasters.
The Government is providing $500,000 to purchase, transport and install the new infrastructure, but most of the work will be done by those on the island.