Phase 1 (2016 and 2017)

Phase 1 was designed to demonstrate and evaluate ‘proof of concept’.

The Lagmhor Pilot Site was established. The site is currently commissioned for up to 5 years of pilot operations (2016 to 2021) under consents granted by Environment Canterbury and Ashburton District Council (ADC).

During this phase up to 500 litres-a-second of un-utilised Ashburton District Council stockwater from the Rangitata River water was diverted via the Rangitata Diversion Race on through the Valetta Irrigation Scheme into the recharge basin.

Phase 2 (2017 -2020)

With a successful Phase 1 outcome, the Lagmhor Pilot site continued to operate and ten additional MAR sites and one near river recharge site were added to the scheme.

The comprehensive testing regime covering groundwater quality and quantity as well as a range of other environmental measures continued.

2020 – 

The pilot programme will be upscaled to enhance high performing test sites and progress additional water supply. We will not know how many additional sites are required until testing takes place.


In addition to the recharge components of the project the pilot has committed to enhancing mahinga kai sites in the region and an indigenous lizard habitat has been created on the Hekeao / Hinds River project site and a wetland area created.

It is important to note that the project does not use any additional water resource or consents but relies on existing consented water that is not used. 

View and download technical information.