Today we told the government what we think about its ‘Clean Water‘ document:
- Rivers that are ‘suitable for swimming more than 80% of the time‘ are not swimmable
- The shift of E.coli guideline to 540 per 100 mls is unacceptable
- All rivers and lakes where communities use or seek to use for recreation should be included for improvement, not just ‘large’ ones
- Residues of pesticides and hydrocarbons need to be included as additional attributes for determining ecological and human health risks of waterways
- The life-supporting capacity of our waterways and the rights of communities and future generations to adequate and clean water must not be compromised by so-called economic arguments
- National bottom lines for freshwater must not be breached because of polluting infrastructure
- Support, not penalize, tangata whenua efforts in protecting the health of our waterways
- Exclude stock from waterways, reduce stock number and halt further dairy conversion for the sake of clean water, ecosystem health and livable climate
- Honour Te Mana o te Wai and invest in responsible and sustainable alternatives
Read our submission here with the case of the Waitara River.
Photos courtesy of Friends of the Waitara River, April 2017
The last few weeks and months have seen a series of encouraging wins on the environmental front: Read the rest of this entry »
Photos from TRC monitoring report on BTW Oeo landfarm, June 2014
Petroleum Exploration and Production Association of New Zealand (PEPANZ) Chief Executive Cameron Madgwick said, “landfarming is nothing more than taking the ground-up rocks, mud and minerals left over from drilling activities and recycling them by placing them underneath the topsoil.”
Unfortunately, the facts tell a different story. As Climate Justice Taranaki Inc. (CJT) pointed out at the public hearings on the Proposed South Taranaki District Plan, the euphemistically termed ‘landfarming’ is actually the spreading of contaminated oil/gas wastes on farmland, and mostly on the coast in South Taranaki. Read the rest of this entry »
Three coastal landfarms in South Taranaki consented for after 2009.
In the proposed South Taranaki District Plan, landfarming, the practice of spreading oil/gas wastes on farmlands, is a Permitted activity in the Rural Zone.
Climate Justice Taranaki, and other submitters, are strongly opposed to this, stating that landfarming should not be Permitted in the Rural Zone or anywhere else, especially on food producing land and within the Coastal Protection Area or catchments of Significant Waterbodies and Wetlands. Read the rest of this entry »
The recent Radio NZ interview with Environment Minister Nick Smith offered some interesting insights into the current government’s view and approach to the management of water.
Many argue that water is the most valuable and contestable natural resource of the 21st century. According to the United Nations, forty-one countries experienced water stress in 2011; ten of them are close to depleting their supply of renewable freshwater and must now rely on non-conventional sources. By 2050, at least one in four people worldwide are likely to be affected by recurring water shortages.
New Zealand is blessed with rich water resources, some 500 trillion litres of it flowing through our lakes, rivers and aquifers. Yet not every region is as ‘rich’, and even the ‘rich’ regions can be ‘poor’ at times.
In the interview, the Minister was adamant on two points:
- No one owns water
- No price will be put on water
Read the rest of this entry »
Steers on BTW Brown Road landfarm, photo by Fiona Clark, 1 June 2014
The New Plymouth District Council (NPDC) announced yesterday that the council will be implementing a “locked gate” policy on Taranaki’s landfarms and other farms where oil/gas wastes have been buried (mix-bury-cover sites). Read the rest of this entry »