In 2002-03, based on 425,000 ha of irrigation nationally, irrigation contributed $0.9 billion or 11% of farm gate GDP. In 2011/12, the study was repeated for the then 720,000 ha and estimated to contribute $2.2 billion. In 2015-16 it was estimated this figure had grown to $2.4 billion based on 800,000 ha irrigated. These figures are at farm gate and do not take account of the considerable flow-on community socio-economic benefits (processing and related service industries).
Looking at the future potential, the NZIER report of 2010, states increasing irrigable area by 350,000 ha increases national GDP by 0.8 %. A 2012 report by AERU, based on 500,000 ha of existing irrigation in Canterbury with a further 250,000 ha of new irrigation, reinforces this. It demonstrates the Canterbury economy receives an additional $2 billion in revenue, and just under 8,000 FTE’s, from the increased irrigation. For New Zealand wide impacts these numbers rise to $3 billion in revenue and just under 8,400 FTE’s.
There are considerable flow-on economic benefits to the community from irrigation. The Opuha Dam and the North Otago Irrigation Company ex-post studies show that farm expenditure, gross farm revenue and farm employment opportunities typically increase threefold when converting from dryland to irrigated agriculture. There are also large social benefits, including a higher household and personal incomes and a higher proportion of the population in full-time employment.
National and regional socio-economic studies of Irrigation:
Recent studies have also examined the options and potential benefits of irrigation development in Northland:
Irrigation scheme socio-economic studies:
With challenging dry conditions continuing across the Upper South Island, Marlborough and Tasman irrigators will have the opportunity to find out how to be more efficient in their water use at upcoming workshops hosted by IrrigationNZ. “Understanding how to monitor….. Read more
With much of New Zealand experiencing exceptionally dry conditions, IrrigationNZ has some advice for irrigators on how to make the most efficient use of water over summer. According to NIWA, several areas in the South and North Island came close….. Read more
IrrigationNZ supports Minister of Regional Development Shane Jones’s announcement that regional economic development funding could support some water irrigation projects. “Water infrastructure plays a vital role in creating resilient rural communities,” says IrrigationNZ Chief Executive Andrew Curtis. “Several New Zealand….. Read more
IrrigationNZ will be back on farms this summer testing irrigation systems and helping farmers improve the efficiency of their irrigation. Last summer, IrrigationNZ in partnership with Environment Canterbury, developed a new testing programme which saw 131 Ashburton farms have their….. Read more
IrrigationNZ says that the petition presented by Greenpeace at Parliament today misrepresents how irrigation has been funded and used and ignores the wide range of benefits to New Zealand from irrigation, as well as the efforts being made to address….. Read more
November 7, 2017 - February 28, 2018
Is your irrigation equipment operating as it should? What improvements could be made? These are questions that can be technically challenging and costly. To help irrigating farmers navigate to Good Management….. Read more
January 18, 2018 - January 19, 2018
Acquire the specialist skills required to design technically efficient and environmentally sustainable irrigation systems. This certificate is suitable for people with prior knowledge and experience in irrigation. You will be required to design two different irrigation systems so will need….. Read more