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
We cannot accept this statement, can you?
While a few may benefit financially from the oil and gas industry, local communities surrounded by oil and gas drilling, fracking, extraction and deepwell injection suffer as future generations are being robbed of a benign climate to live in. Yet council wants recognition for the industry as a policy in the Draft Coastal Plan for Taranaki (Policy 5b, Rules 11, 25-29).
The Draft Plan also proposes to allow the continuation of sewage (Rules 6 & 7) and industrial (Rules 12 & 13) discharge into our marine environment, despite the risks to human and environmental health and breaches on Maori rights (Wai-6).
If you don’t agree with what’s in the draft plan, then tell council. Use council’s online feedback form. You have until Friday 18 November 2016. The plan and associated documents are here.
Read CJT’s feedback to council here.
This morning, members from Climate Justice Taranaki spoke to the Local Government and Environment Select Committee on the government’s proposed Resource Legislation Amendment Bill. The four key points were:
- The effects on CLIMATE CHANGE must be at the heart of every resource management decision, if the goal is to truly manage natural resources sustainably and protect our natural environment. Currently, the RMA and EEZ Act prohibit councils and the EPA from considering the effects of activities on climate change. CJT urge that these be amended, as the government has a legal obligation and duty of care to protect its citizens from climate change.
- The proposed Bill takes away councils’ function in preventing and mitigating any adverse effects of the storage, use, disposal or transportation of HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCES. This is an extremely dangerous proposition as it eliminates what could protect local communities from well blow-out, gas clouds and other harmful accidents associated with the fossil fuel and other heavy industries.
- Fracking is known to contaminate water, soil, cause serious health effects, induce earthquakes and exacerbates climate change. CJT urge for a nationwide ban on FRACKING and a halt on all fossil fuel exploration.
- The proposed Bill erodes ENVIRONMENTAL BOTTOM LINES, dis-empowers the public and threatens democratic processes when it should be strengthening environmental protection and ensuring resource sustainability and public rights in decision making.
Read the rest of this entry »
The new Marine Protected Areas (MPA) Act excludes the entire EEZ, continental shelf and all areas under petroleum and mineral licenses, from MPA consideration. The Ministers say this is to give certainty to industries, but what about certainty for future generations to have a healthy ocean to thrive on? Please tell the government what you think. Send submissions by email to email@example.com before this Friday 11 March 5pm. Be sure to include “MPA Act consultation”, your name, address, tel and email. Alternatively use Forest & Birds’ online form. Below are our key points you may like to cover in yours.
Key Points of CJT Submission
- Climate Justice Taranaki Inc. (CJT) welcome a reform of marine protected areas legislation.
- The new Marine Protected Areas (MPA) Act places economic growth well above environmental conservation and ignores the fact that the so-called ‘balance’ has long been tipped.
- The Act must include the entire marine areas of New Zealand, including territorial seas, the Exclusive Economic Zone and continental shelf (EEZ-CS), to be fit for purpose.
- Areas under petroleum and mineral licenses should not be excluded from MPA consideration. There cannot possibly be a representative and adaptive network of MPAs when the EEZ and all licensed areas are excluded.
- The foundation and emphasis of the Act should be full protection of marine areas with significant conservation values, as ensured under the Marine Reserve Act.
- The regulations and management of other MPAs, notably existing marine mammal sanctuaries and the proposed seabed reserves, require substantial strengthening to offer adequate species protection and opportunities for recovery of threatened species or communities.
- Recreational fishing parks do not enhance, protect or restore marine biodiversity and ought not be introduced into the MPA Act. Conflicts between recreational and commercial fisheries are best managed under the Fisheries Act.
- CJT support meaningful recognition of the Treaty of Waitangi and customary rights and values in the Act.
Read this media story: Anton Van Heldon: Govt failing in duty to marine life (NZ Herald, 8/03/2016)
- The ETS has not reduced greenhouse gas emissions
- The ETS should not be the main policy tool for reducing emissions
- The ETS offers perverse subsides to polluters
- Carbon credits are permits to pollute and the ETS is little more than a scam
- We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them
More on the above, read our submission to the Ministry for the Environment.
“Our group Climate Justice Taranaki confirmed today that Taranaki voices have been excluded from parliament for months with the region’s submissions being lost in cyberspace” says Climate Justice Taranaki spokesperson Urs Signer.
“When making submissions last week on the EPA (Protection of Environment) Amendment Bill, we noticed that our group’s submission on this bill, as well as those from individuals in Taranaki, were not received when using parliament’s designated submission form. We then realised that the select committee also did not receive our submissions made in April, on the EEZ Amendment Bill which allows STOS and other oil companies to continue their operations before decisions of their marine consent applications and/or any subsequent objections or appeals are made.” Read the rest of this entry »
Under EPA is expected “to undertake its functions in a way that contributes to the efficient, effective, and transparent management of New Zealand’s environment and natural and physical resources“. But surely the Environmental Protection Authority must have a mandate to protect the environment!
Please submit to the Select Committee in SUPPORT of the EPA (Protection of Environment) Amendment Bill which gives EPA the objective to protect, maintain and enhance NZ’s environment
. It’s easy and can be as simple as a single line. State whether you wish to speak to your submission. Submission can be done online
(scroll to bottom of that page, click the icon under ‘verification’ & it’ll take you to the submission form). Submission closes this Thur 10 Sept
. Read CJT’s submission