Skip to main content

This is how we're responding in Canterbury wide.

Flood protection

Environment Canterbury manages flood protection and control works for our region. This includes stopbanks, seawalls, drainage and gravel extraction from rivers. Its river control and land drainage schemes cover more than 1,000 km of rivers, many smaller streams and over 760 km of rural open drains.

Over the next 30 years, river and coastal flood defences, such as stopbanks, will need to be upgraded – these will become bigger as climate change effects become more significant. Impacts will vary from place to place, but around a 20 per cent increase in peak flows is expected by the end of the century. This means that a flood currently expected every 100 years could be expected every 50 years.

Thanks to a climate resilience grant, some flood protection projects are being fast-tracked as a critical first step in climate adaptation.