Surfbreak Protection Society
Surfbreak Protection Society

For Immediate Release: SPS – Port Lyttelton Appeal Resolved

Surfbreak Protection Society withdraws its appeal on LPC resource consent application

Lyttelton Port Company (LPC) was recently granted resource consent by Environment Canterbury to extend the existing shipping channel in Lyttelton Harbour/Whakaraupō. The Surfbreak Protection Society (SPS) subsequently appealed the consent, primarily over concerns about effects on local surf breaks.


Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, Te Hapū o Ngāti Wheke (Rapaki), Te Rūnanga o Koukourārata and Ngāi Tahu Fisheries have also appealed the consent.

Peter Davie, LPC Chief Executive and Michael Gunson, SPS Research and Communications announced today that SPS has withdrawn its appeal. SPS and LPC have worked together to resolve SPS’s concerns with the consent and the potential for effects on local surf breaks. SPS and LPC’s discussions have confirmed both the validity of LPC’s wave modelling and the value of additional protection measures for the local surf breaks.

“SPS was heartened by the proactive approach taken by LPC in seeking an early resolution to our concerns.” says Michael Gunson. “Taylors Mistake is the premiere surf break in Christchurch City with a high amenity value to residents and visitors.

“The additional protection will include establishment of a Surfing Liaison Group, five yearly reviews of the surf effects and a dedicated web-based camera system to continuously monitor the character of the Taylors Mistake surf break,” says Peter Davie.

The agreed monitoring is based on a successful system implemented by Port of Otago which utilises hydrodynamic modelling, bathymetric surveys and a remote camera at Taylors Mistake to manage potential effects on surf wave quality. SPS and LPC are pleased to resolve the appeal as it will enable Lyttelton Port to provide for the future freight demands of the growing Canterbury economy and protect the valuable recreation resource that the regionally important surf breaks provide.

LPC remains focused on working with Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, Te Hapū o Ngāti Wheke (Rapaki), Te Rūnanga o Koukourārata and Ngāi Tahu Fisheries to resolve the issues raised in their appeal.


For further information:

Allanah James | Strategic Communications Manager | Lyttelton Port of Christchurch
M: 021 709 652 | E:

Michael Gunson: Research and Communications – Surfbreak Protection Society Ph: 0226940898

The agreed to conditions can be read here

Comments are closed.

Newsletter Signup
  • Our monthly newsletter is sent out to subscribers on the 15th of every month and keeps you up to date with surfing conservation issues nationally and regionally. there is of course an opt out option if you so desire.
    * = required field

    powered by MailChimp!
  • Latest News
    • Dec 20, 2017

      The Surfbreak Protection Society is relieved to withdraw our appeal opposing the Lyttelton Port Company’s consent application for disposal of Dredge material some four Kilometers offshore from Taylors Mistake and Christchurch surf breaks at Sumner and further North towards New Brighton. We now have monitoring in place to ensure any adverse effects from the disposal can be adequately addressed should adverse effects occur.

      read article
    • Dec 1, 2017

      SPS has written to Waikato Regional Council, the Minister of Conservation and other parties alerting the agencies to the instability of the Whangamata bar and estuary caused by the near monthly dredging of the Moana anu anu Confluence in order to provide all tide access to the marina built in 2008 – 2010.

      The Whangamata Bar is listed in schedule one of the New Zealand Coastal Policy Statement, where all adverse effects on the 17 listed surf breaks must be avoided.

      SPS assert that it is not appropriate for Waikato Regional Council to invoke plausible deniability while at the same time discouraging any further science to better understand the coastal processes of the Whangamata estuary and world famous surf break on the ebb tide delta.

      The Whangamata marina society originally misled the Crown at the Environment Court as to the amounts required to be dredged, and when the society were granted the construction consents, the society then gained new non notified consents from WRC for amounts 3 times greater than was originally accepted by the Environment Court.

      In 2012 SPS leveraged a dredging consent review from WRC due to the poor surfing wave quality on the bar soon after every dredge, The Bar never gets a chance to repair itself, as with every lunar cycle, a new dredge on the spring tide takes place.

      Incredibly, during the consent review WRC turned around and granted the marina society a new consent for a Lift and Drift method without accurate measure of what has been dredged, and without any monitoring conditions what so ever on the Whangamata Bar.

      Since 2013 SPS has conducted its own monitoring of the Whangamata ebb tide delta, and over the five years since the flawed WRC consent review, SPS have found a clear linkage between dredging events and the significant adverse effects on surf quality on the Whangamata Bar.

      With this letter WRC are now on notice to conduct their statutory obligations under the New Zealand Coastal Policy Statement 2010.

      WRC and its officers, the Thames Coromandel District Council, and the Whangamata Marina society all have a duty under section 17 of the RMA. Every person has a duty to avoid, remedy, or mitigate any adverse effect on the environment arising from an activity carried on by, or on behalf of the person…

      Our letter has put the above parties on notice and SPS expect that Policy 16 of the NZCPS will be upheld.

      read article
    • Aug 14, 2017

      The Surfbreak Protection Society (SPS) has lodged an appeal against the Lyttelton Port of Christchurch Ltd (LPC ) capital dredging consents that would see up to 18 million cubic meters of sediment dredged from the shipping channel and placed in the swell corridors of Christchurch City’s surf breaks Taylors Mistake, Sumner Bar, Sumner and New Brighton, and cumulatively some 900,000 cubic meters of maintenance dredgings annually.

      read article
    • Feb 8, 2017

      Press release: Another contaminated storm water overflow event at Lyall Bay, and Wellington City Council’s advice is:

      “Generally speaking 48 hours after heavy rainfall it’s usually wise to avoid swimming in the harbour or swimming around the south coast.”

      This is simply not good enough! In 2010 Wellington City Council gave us a promise that they prioritise works to resolve this unpleasant situation for beach goers. It seams that now the priority is a generous donation of more than $90 million to Infratil shareholders to build an airport extension that will do further harm to Lyall Bay’s surfbreaks. SPS are requesting Greater Wellington Regional Council review the consents granted in 2011 to allow WCC to continue discharges for another ten years in light of the consents are in breach of the New Zealand Coastal policy Statement 2010 in regard to the use and enjoyment of surf breaks

      read article
    • Nov 21, 2016

      The Surfbreak Protection Society is urging other Wellington surfers who made submissions on the proposed extension to file their form under section 274 stating they would like to appear in the Environment Court and speak to their submissions. If you have not made a submission, SPS will consider tabling a witnessed affidavit to the Court on your behalf..

      read article
    • Sep 30, 2016

      SPS has put three questions to the 40 mayoral and council candidates regarding WIAL’s all out assault on the Corner surf break and whether or not they support WIAL seeking the Corner’s removal for the sake of their seawall and extension. The questions we put were:

      1. WIAL are seeking to remove the Corner surf break from the proposed Natural Resources Plan so they can build a new seawall and promenade along Moa Point Rd. WIAL will need the support of WCC. If elected, will you support the removal of the Corner surf break for this project?

      2.Do you think it for the public good that Lyall Bay should suffer degraded surfing conditions, the demise of the Corner and Airport Rights surf breaks, for the sake of an airport extension and new promenade?

      3. Do you think WIAL should be obligated to rectify the damage to the Corner’s surfing wave quality, that they have caused over the last six to fifteen years?

      So far we have had 13 candidates respond

      If candidates do not respond by Sunday 1st of October SPS will take that as a “no comment”

      read article
    latest gallery images
    Facebook Fans
  • ****** Surfrider Chapters Rally to Defend Coasts from Offshore Drilling ****** Meet Rafael Bergstrom, Surfrider Activist and Coastal Defender ****** Surfrider Argues to the Michigan Supreme Court to Protect Public Lakeshore Access ****** Offshore Drilling Planned off Your Coasts: Time to Speak Out! ****** California: How, When and Where to Speak Up Against New Offshore Oil Drilling ****** Surfrider Sues U.S. Steel for Lake Michigan Pollution ****** 2018, The Year We Say Goodbye to Plastic Straws! ****** Rain sends polluted runoff to beaches in Southern California ****** Hurricane Struck Caribbean Islands still Struggle for Clean Water ****** Upgrading BWTF Labs to Reduce Plastic Waste