Cromwell-based company Landpro has landed stage one of a $200,000 project to scope 75 Otago lakes, with the potential goal of developing a lakes management plan.
    The Otago Regional Council decided to request the study in 2021.
    It received three tenders, and chose Landpro to do stage one, which will cost less than 50% of the total project budget, according to an ORC media release.
    Otago has more than 7200 lakes — with lakes Wanaka, Hawea and Dunstan the biggest.
    The council wants to find out if there is a need for a new Otago Lakes Strategic Plan or whether other initiatives are needed to enhance the way lakes are managed.
    ORC senior strategic analyst and project manager James Adams said the information would inform the council about management and strategy options.

By the numbers

Otago has . . .
Lakes: More than 7200
Big lakes: (10ha plus): 61
Medium lakes: (between 1ha-10ha): 418
Little (inc farm dams and water bodies): 6721

    “This piece of work is an important stock take on lake management. It’ll let us know how well lakes management is working, and how we build on what we’re doing already,” he said.
    Landpro would engage with Kai Tahu, local communities and other stakeholders.
    The company would also do a complete stock take of 75 named lakes and their management.
    The stage one report is due by September 30.
    Dependent on the outcome, stage two would clarify the purpose, scope and function of a lakes plan.
    Landpro chief executive Jason Harvey-Wills said it was ‘‘super important’’ to be involved in such a critical project for Otago’s future.
    “We’re always excited to be involved at a community level, speaking to different stakeholders about their concerns and liaising with the council to seek strong practical outcomes,” he said.
    Landpro planning manager and project leader Claire Perkins said Landpro had previously completed the Upper Clutha Community Catchment Plan for Wai Wanaka.
    This provided “some great existing data” in order to push the new project forward quickly, she said.