Christchurch on its way to becoming chlorine free

The city Council is encouraging residents to keep up the good work by doing their bit to save water this summer.

Work on upgrading the city’s well heads resumed this week after a short break over the holiday period.

The Council has so far upgraded 38 of 140 well heads, meaning about a quarter of the city’s drinking water supply is currently chlorine free.

Water Supply Improvement Programme Manager Helen Beaumont says people’s efforts are making a noticeable difference.

“The data shows average water use to date is well below the summer averages for 2016 and 2017. While some of that can be attributed to the extra rain we had in spring, people are also changing their thinking and making small changes to their water use. It all adds up, and we really appreciate people’s efforts to date.”

Ms Beaumont says lower water use means more wells can be taken offline for upgrades.

“The biggest demand for household water comes from garden sprinklers and irrigators, which can use an incredible amount of water. A much more water-friendly option is to use hand-held watering methods such as a hose with a spray gun, or a watering can. That way, the water use stays low, we can upgrade well heads faster, and stop chlorinating the water sooner.”

The Council is encouraging hand-held watering only for lawns and gardens on alternate days between 9pm and 7am, reducing laundry loads, and keeping personal showers to five minutes.

“We are going to be very busy over the next few months as we work to upgrade the remaining below-ground well heads. More than ever we need people to spread the word and come on board with the campaign to conserve water.”

More ways to save water can be found online at ccc.govt.nz/water-saving-tips

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