Improving the protection of drinking-water sources

Closed 6 Mar 2022

Opened 10 Jan 2022


Everyone should have access to safe drinking water. We are considering changes to the National Environmental Standards for Sources of Human Drinking Water (NES-DW) to make our drinking water safer.

The Government consulted on three proposals to strengthen the ability of the NES-DW to protect drinking water sources:

  • standardising the way we define source water areas 
  • strengthening regulation of activities around water sources
  •  including more water suppliers under the NES-DW. The consultation.

This consultation closed on 6 March 2022.

Read the consultation document for Kia kaha ake te tiakina o ngā puna wai-inu: Improving the protection of drinking-water source [PDF, 3.8 MB]

Read the full press release from the Minister

Note: Newly established water services regulator Taumata Arowai ran consultations focusing on other areas of drinking water regulation including drinking water standards and rules. These closed on 28 March 2022. Find out more at

What happens next

We will analyse and summarise submissions. We will then provide final policy advice to the Government on the preferred options.

If you have any queries please email