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The Standard

It’s cold in Christchurch

Written By: - Date published: 7:15 am, July 26th, 2011 - 69 comments
Categories: accountability, Gerry Brownlee, housing - Tags: ,

It’s cold in Christchurch. Yeah I know it’s cold in lots of places, but Christchurch is of particular concern, with so many houses, and so much infrastructure, trashed in the quakes. So WTF is going on here?

Bizarre’ delay in Christchurch heating programme

The Government’s decision to delay Phase Two of Christchurch’s heating programme for two months is bizarre and unbelievable, says Labour’s Earthquake Recovery spokesperson and Waimakariri MP Clayton Cosgrove.

“It’s snowing heavily down here. It’s freezing cold. Yet I have been advised by a large heat pump installer that the Government has put the winter heating programme on hold until virtually the end of August and given no reason. The decision leaves me completely baffled,” Clayton Cosgrove said. …

“The installer has pointed out to Mr Brownlee that the industry was geared up for the programme, with many companies taking on more staff. But some, he said, will now struggle to survive, and will have to put off staff. …

“As the installer says to Mr Brownlee, ‘many older people and families (are) still living in near third world conditions with only one heat pump in a freezing climate. Many people have had their 20Kw long burner or fire replaced with a 5-9 Kw heat pump and they need more than the one heat pump to keep warm for the colder months ahead’.

“As the snow falls, and the region battles freezing temperatures, Mr Brownlee must revisit this extraordinary decision and explain what he was thinking of in the first place.”

The disinfectant of sunlight caused the Nats to acknowledge their shabby treatment of the Crete veterans. The same sunlight needs to be shone on this outrageous situation. Brownlee needs to do two things and do them fast.  First, explain this apparently perverse decision, and second, fix it, fast.

69 comments on “It’s cold in Christchurch”

  1. Man if this can be confirmed and linked to Brownlee he has just lost Ilam.

  2. Deadly_NZ 2

    Maybe Brownlee figures that it will be cheaper to let the weather do what he and the rest of the NAct cant do, and get rid of a lot of opposition voters.

  3. Lanthanide 3

    These heat pumps are all a nice idea for now. But in 5-10 years time they’re going to start crapping out en-masse due to poor installation or lack of maintenance.

    My aunt and uncle have a heatpump that appears to have been incorrectly installed. It was put into the garden on a concrete pad that wasn’t properly compacted, so over time one corner has sunk. This has resulted in water (from rain, and condensation from unit operation) pooling in the drip tray which is tilted so that the corner with the compressor/pump was constantly immersed in it. It rusted through and broke down.

    When talking to the installers (and finally getting them to admit liability), he found out that part of regular maintenance you’re expected to clean the tray out every 6 months. But when questioned, they never actually told customers this, and it’s generally not mentioned in the manuals that come with them.

    • bbfloyd 3.1

      who cares whether they crap out in 5-10 years time… it’s NOW that it counts… for gods sake get a grip lanth.

      • Lanthanide 3.1.1

        1. Leaky buildings, part deux? Who cares if we have thousands of heat pumps flaking out in a decade, let’s just do a rush job now because the future doesn’t matter.

        2. In 5-10 years time, we may be on a sharp downwards slope thanks to peak oil. Better to do a proper job now so when crunch time comes this isn’t yet another problem that has to be dealt with.

        • weka 3.1.1.1

          Not to mention heat pumps in a city that periodically loses its electricity supply in big storms. That’s likely to get worse over the next few decades too.
           
          I do agree something urgent needs to be done, but heat pumps should be a long term solution not a short term one, and they don’t work in the long term.

          • Lanthanide 3.1.1.1.1

            I don’t think Christchurch is particularly more susceptible to power outages from storms more than any other city is. In fact I don’t think I’ve ever lost electricity in any of the houses I’ve been in, and I’ve lived my entire life in CHCH. Maybe once when I was a kid for an evening, but that would be it.

            • weka 3.1.1.1.1.1

              Didn’t the power go out yesterday? There was a big snow storm a couple of years ago that took out the power in parts of Chch for a few days (and many other places in the SI). It’s not that Chch is more susceptible, it’s that Chch is rapidly replacing a sustainable and future proofed source of heat (woodburners) with one that isn’t sustainable and future proofed.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Wood burners aren’t sustainable. Heat pumps are.

                • weka

                  Heat pumps aren’t sustainable.  Wood burners are.
                   
                  :-p
                   
                  Actually woodburners themselves aren’t sustainable because you still need oil to make them, but if well built they will outlast the lifetime of a heat pump. Windfarms and hydro on the other hand… what do you think will be used to build and maintain those?
                   
                  Further, wood for heat fuel is the most carbon neutral source we have. It has multiple flow on benefits that go with forestry (assuming that it’s mixed forestry not monocrop).
                   
                   

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Windfarms and hydro on the other hand… what do you think will be used to build and maintain those?

                    Wind farms and hydro of course.

                • Lanthanide

                  That comment really boggles my mind. Your definition of “sustainable” is very twisted.

                  Wood burners, vis-a-vis, burning wood to produce heat, has existed for millenia.

                  Heat pumps, relying on electricity that has only been produced for a few hundred years, also rely on a huge manufacturing base to dig up the metals, refine and process them, finally stamp them into the right shape for assembling a heat pump. Don’t forget all the PCB and electronics required to operate it, as well as the refrigerant required to make it work.

                  By comparison, you can grow a tree in your yard and cut it down to burn it up. I’d like to see you build a heat pump in your yard.

                  The only way in which a heat pump is more sustainable than a wood burner is that the energy to drive it can ultimately come from a hydro dam or geothermal plant. But the hydro damn and geothermal plants themselves rely on high technology, not even mentioning the electricity grid and thousands of kilometres of power lines required to get the energy to your house…

                  • weka

                    It’s the problem with how the word sustainable has been coopted. Very little of what humans do now is sustainable. But in the heat pumps vs woodburners comparision, when you take into account the whole picture, it’s a bit of a no brainer.
                     
                    I think people like heat pumps because it means less work for the end user. But someone has to do the work to get the energy and in the case of heat pumps it’s oil and nature. I also have a problem with cities expecting to source power from nature destroying hydro that’s out of site.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Very little of what humans do now is sustainable.

                      Actually, quite a lot of what we do now can be sustained if we move from a profit driven consumerist economy.

                      But someone has to do the work to get the energy and in the case of heat pumps it’s oil and nature.

                      But it doesn’t have to be you moron.

                      I also have a problem with cities expecting to source power from nature destroying hydro that’s out of site.

                      I’ve decided that I’m looking forward to the time when we knock down the hydro dams and putting in place inflow generators, wind farms and passive solar heating.

                    • weka

                      But someone has to do the work to get the energy and in the case of heat pumps it’s oil and nature.

                      But it doesn’t have to be you moron.
                       

                      That piece of abuse seems completely unnecessary.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Wood burners, vis-a-vis, burning wood to produce heat, has existed for millenia.

                    Yep, right up until they run out of wood.

                    • Lanthanide

                      You can plant more trees for firewood. I’m not sure if you’ve bought firewood before, but quite a few places advertise that they use sustainable timber, that is, trees specifically grown as fuel. The paper industry works the same, and generally plants at least 1 tree for every tree they chop down – sustainable.

                      Getting it to rain on demand for your hydro station isn’t quite as effective, as we’ve seen with the various winter power shortages in this country.

                    • Vicky32

                      Yep, right up until they run out of wood.

                      That’s completely illogical! Running out of coal, I can see that happening, obviously. But duh, trees are by their nature, a renewable resource. I currently have a huge problem with trees (the first tenant in this house, over 50 years ago) was a nice old guy, whose hobby was gardening. He planted trees all over the section. Lovely for him, I am sure. He’s long dead, the trees block the sun and make this steep section with no drainage, even more of a swamp than it would otherwise be. I would gladly chop down the lot of them if I could, and HNZ won’t – until I move out, then you can bet the damn things will be pruned or cut down! If I could, I’d cut them all and donate the wood to whoever wants it. After literal years of my begging, one of them was pruned 15 months ago, and guess what, the fraking thing has grown back and blocked the front windows again, so I have to have lights and heater on all day – and I am on $190 a week UB…

              • Lanthanide

                Like I said, I’ve never lost power in any houses I’ve lived in, except maybe once as a child.

                • lprent

                  I have. Unfortunately I moved into my new apartment, and the following month Vector found that 50 year old cables weren’t up to the task of supplying Aucklands CBD. I joined the rush to get UPS’es for my server and other computers.

                • weka

                  I’m not sure what your point it Lanthanide. Are you saying that because you’ve never lost power it hasn’t happened elsewhere in Chch?

                  • Lanthanide

                    You originally said this:
                    “Not to mention heat pumps in a city that periodically loses its electricity supply in big storms. That’s likely to get worse over the next few decades too.”

                    I’m saying this:
                    “I don’t think Christchurch is particularly more susceptible to power outages from storms more than any other city is.”

                    And now you’re talking about the consequences of losing power. But that’s not what you initially said – you initially talked about losing power itself.

                    • weka

                      Chch (parts of it) *has had power outages due to weather events (as have other places in NZ). That is likely to get worse in the coming decades due to more weather extremes and failing infrastrucutre post-peak oil. So yes, Chch isn’t any more susceptible than anywhere else in NZ, but the reason I singled out Chch is because it’s currently replacing woodburners for heat pumps much faster than other places.

                    • Lanthanide

                      I completely agree with you weka.

                      Simply my pedantic and logical programmer brain saw you specifically refer to “[the] city” when you didn’t need to, so I assumed you were somehow suggesting that CHCH was more susceptible than other players to power outages. Hence my reply.

                    • weka

                      Cheers :-)

        • freedom 3.1.1.2

          Lanthanide your words are a prime example of the devious and malicious intent being expressed on threads and in the media all over this country. The bare-faced malevolence of your red herring is nauseating. People will die without adequate resources for heating. Are you so bloody self-important that you believe there is any justification whatsoever to delay the immediate and complete installation of heating for any and all who need it in ChCh.

          Fuckwit of the day award goes to you.

          • The Voice of Reason 3.1.1.2.1

            Nah, I think Lanth’s on to it. If it’s immediate heat that is needed, then waiting for a heat pump to be installed is not the answer. King Gerry should be dishing out fan and oil heaters to those that need them now and booking the installation of heat pumps later on down the track.

          • Lanthanide 3.1.1.2.2

            Nowhere did I say I support Brownlee delaying the installation of heatpumps. In fact I didn’t even try to suggest that the reason I gave is why Brownlee is doing this.

            I simply raised it as an issue with this whole scheme that needs to be properly addressed otherwise we’ll just be facing an echo of this problem in the future.

            If Brownlee has delayed the programme specifically to deal to these issues, I would suggest the more appropriate course would be to throw more money and people at it to get it sorted sooner. Really they’ve had since September to get this sorted and I’ve heard that they didn’t start installing any heating anywhere until January of this year, 3 months down the drain. Of course it was the February quake that really threw a spanner in the works, but most chimney’s that came down, came down in September.

            • Puddleglum 3.1.1.2.2.1

              Hi Lanthanide, I think you’re right that the heat pumps need to be properly installed. It should not be necessary to create a longer term problem in order to solve an immediate one.

              But it sounds to me as if the sloppy installation and unclear/lack of maintenance instructions are something that Gerry Brownlee, as Minister of Earthquake Recovery, can ensure through some ‘fast-tracking’ that he has been enabled to do. He could also set up an instant, independent checking system of their installation and provision of maintenance instructions (e.g., require they be inspected within two days/five days or whatever of installation and that no payment will be made to contractors until they are given the ‘tick’).

              If this isn’t a case in which his exceptional powers (I mean his legal ones) could be put to good use, what is?

              If he hasn’t arranged an alternative for this winter (I hope, even presume, that he has) then this would be very negligent.

              Has he responded yet?

  4. Jodie 4

    Make sure you all wrap up warm! I’m also taking Hi Dose Vit C to help boost my immunity as we are bound to all get sick!! I just won some off the Clinicians Facebook Page :)

    • Mac1 4.1

      http://www.quackwatch.org/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/DSH/colds.html

      It seems, Jodie, that high doses of vit C don’t do much, as Linus Pauling once alleged (and from which he has now resiled, if I remember clearly.) Anyway, the above link is worth considering.

      I’m surprised that the clinicians are pushing vit C over and above consumption of a little citrus fruit.

      • wtl 4.1.1

        Or kiwifuit, which I believe has even more vitamin C than citrus.

      • Colonial Viper 4.1.2

        One or two NZ families reckon that high dose intravenous vitamin C saved family members from intensive care level Swine Flu.

        Once they could convince medical staff to stop marking off time until the respirators were turned off and try something non-traditional.

        Worked a treat. Even had a trial design where the dying patient acted as their own control, as the doctors tended to change their mind about the vitamin C even as things were improving, withdraw it, and the patient worsened again.

        However in general, getting nutrients from fresh foods beats supplements hands down.

      • ianmac from Turkey 4.1.3

        Agree wıth you Mac1 that the vıtamın C ıs largely a myth. All thıngs ın moderatıon.
        Seems strange to be concerned about the coldness whıle Turkey ın the 30s the problem ıs the opposıte. Mınd you the rules here a bıt dıfferent. (Went on a 12 seater mınıbus 40 mınute trıp thıs mornıng wıth 21 adults and 1 chıld on board.)

  5. vto 5

    Just another case of this National government directing money away from areas it will not win votes in and towards its supporters, such as irrigators in Canterbury.

    It is all there in black and white..

    If you are an irrigator then you get money thrown at you and if you are living in the ice and brokenness in eastern Chch then you get money taken away from you.

    Similarly, early childcare vs, say, the holiday highway.

    Fuckers this lot are.

    At least it is beautiful blue sky day today, melting the ice and snow and tempting me out on the beach. Very pretty too it is. Gotta take what good there is eh …

  6. Afewknowthetruth 6

    New Plymouth District Council is pressing ahead with a new art centre at a proposed cost of $10 million (for overseas tourists who will never arrive, due to peak oil) and is looking to the government for half the funding. As far as anyone can tell the government is very happy to contribute $4 or 5 million towards something that serves no useful purpose. The same with the f***ing rugby, of course. (Sone say it all about keeping Jonathan Young in position.)

    I believe Nelson has similar plans for an absurd performing art centre that just wonl’t die.

    It’s all a matter of priorities. And for corporate sociopaths the priority is the transference of wealth upwards.

    (see the last entry on How Empires End for the Rothschild connection)

    • freedom 6.1

      you should do a little more research before spouting off wildly innaccurate bs.

      The contribution is towards the Len Lye Museum. An internationally supported project that will celebrate the single most important and influential artist NZ ever produced. Yes even bigger and more important than Colin McCahon Katherine Mansfield and Kiri teKanawa combined. ( though you may never have heard of him does not diminsih his impact on 20th Century Art)

      i am not going to begin an art history lesson but in future give your reactionary statements a little fact

      • Lanthanide 6.1.1

        AFKTT rails against anyone who doesn’t immediately fall into line with his world view and do everything he thinks is best.

        • freedom 6.1.1.1

          afktt ???? what is that please
          more importantly, the fuckwit comment earlier was harsh and unwarranted and i blame an aggravating morning spent dealing with an on-line banking issue that has coloured my outlook somewhat today. so i retract the award comment and ask for consideration due a temporary absence of calm.

          i still believe the immediate needs of people living in a damaged and harsh environment outwieghs the longer term concerns in this instance. though you are correct that there are plenty of other options that should have been addressed for this temporary problem.

          i am not sure why you replied here though. My comments about Len Lye are in no way me wanting the world to fall into line. I was stating an absence of facts in the authors statment, nothing else.

          • Lanthanide 6.1.1.1.1

            AFKTT – A Few Know The Truth.

            I replied here because you said this:
            “you should do a little more research before spouting off wildly innaccurate bs.”
            “i am not going to begin an art history lesson but in future give your reactionary statements a little fact”

            I’m just pointing out AFKTT’s modus operandi – to attack anyone who doesn’t immediately agree with his point of view (in this case, that the gallery is a waste of time and shouldn’t be built). That’s not to say that I disagree with his point of view, in fact I agree with most of it most of the time, but that’s just his typical style of commenting here. I usually just ignore his posts because I can predict everything he’s going to say.

      • Vicky32 6.1.2

        i am not going to begin an art history lesson but in future give your reactionary statements a little fact

        Whoop-de-freaking-do! I am with AFKTT on this.. I believe the art lovers should fund their own hobby, just as I wish the thugby lovers would do likewise. Who gives a toss about Len Lye? Let Jenny Gibbs, patron of the arts, part with some of her cash. Precious pretenders with their expensive wine, cheese and paintings neither deserve nor need public funding.

  7. vto 7

    Requiring homeowners to take out their fireplaces and install electrical heating is just dumb. I am glad it has recently changed.

    Forcing people to rely on electricity when it is unreliable and when the heat is a life and death issue is fundamentally flawed.

    It is a fundamental ‘right’ to be able to burn something to warm yourself at night. It is as fundamental as the air that we breathe.

    And on top of that, what happens when foreigners get to own even more of our power system? Will they not attend to maintenance and upgrade like happenned with those crooks Fay and Richwhite with NZ Rail? They just looted the company of cash and did no upgrades or even basic maintenance. Is our power system fated to follow in NZ Rail’s footsteps? And what happens to our electrical heating in those circumstances?

    Keep your fireplace. Fuck the electricity goons.

    • Lanthanide 7.1

      I don’t think it’s “recently changed”.

      You always had the option of installing a wood burner. The wood burner must comply with the new standards however. Note that the new standard limits you from turning down the air on your fireplace as much as the older standards did because low air flow = smoky fires = more smog.

      However if you properly tend to your fire, low air doesn’t produce more smoke, it simply means the fire burns slower and therefore longer, requiring less re-fuelling and better heat moderation in your home. A far bigger culprit for smoky fires is people burning inappropriate material or wet wood. This is another case of ineffective regulation – limiting air intake will only moderately reduce the pollution problem while harming those who know how to use a fire properly, as well as generally increase fuel consumption, but it doesn’t do anything about people burning the wrong things.

      • vto 7.1.1

        True. What was meant re “recently changed” is that as I understood things its used to be that your old fireplace had to come out and a ‘pellet’ fire or some other strange thing, not woodburner, was required to go in, and/or electrical. Which again required being joined at the hip to some other organisation supplying the pellets etc. Fail.

        We have a newly installed woodburner which cannot be turned down as low as the old one. Although I notice that a couple of minor adjustments to this unit and voila, the fire can be made to burn slow again. It is so easy that I do wonder whether the technos who designed and, especially, made these fireplaces secretly allowed this simple adjustment to be incorporated so that the people could later make their own adjustments. Warms the cockles of me belly thinking that ….

        And mmmmmmmm how lush is a fireplace for warmth, especially when the snow is as low as it can go.

        • Lanthanide 7.1.1.1

          Woodburners have always been a possible heating option for new installations in Christchurch. The new standards did push prices up and reduce supply for a while.

          I think wood burners didn’t used to qualify for subsidies for a while, or not as large subsidies as pellet fires or heat pumps. But I think the subsidy change to encompass wood burners was a couple of years ago now, rather than something particularly recent.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.2

      It is a fundamental ‘right’ to be able to burn something to warm yourself at night. It is as fundamental as the air that we breathe.

      No it’s not. Unnecessarily burning wood is bad for the environment which we rely upon to live and thus you have no right to destroy the environment. If the power distribution system isn’t reliable, which it should be, then that needs to be looked at ASAP.

      And on top of that, what happens when foreigners get to own even more of our power system?

      Well, the best we can do is ensure that the politicians don’t sell off more of the power distribution system. Would be nice if they renationalised that which has been sold off as well.

      • vto 7.2.1

        Yes it is. New Zealand grows ample wood for burning to keep warm. The effects of that on the environment is a matter of numbers of people not the warming. The bad effects on the environment can be remedied by banning the combustion engine first. The world can handle the people warming by burning wood.

        It is also fundamental because of the consequence of the risk of the power system failing. Death. Like being denied air to breathe.

        • Draco T Bastard 7.2.1.1

          New Zealand grows ample wood for burning to keep warm.

          Actually, I think you’d find that it doesn’t although it would be good if to see any actual figures.

          It is also fundamental because of the consequence of the risk of the power system failing. Death.

          Which just means that the power distribution system needs to be better maintained with all power cables underground.

          • weka 7.2.1.1.1

            Which just means that the power distribution system needs to be better maintained with all power cables underground.
             

            You’re assuming we will for the forseeable future be able to maintain and replace such infrastructure, and that people will be able to afford the power company prices. What makes you confident of that in the face of peak oil and climate change?

            • Draco T Bastard 7.2.1.1.1.1

              It’s called an economy. It has nothing to do with the monetary theory that presently passes in the halls of academia and politics as it’s actually based around the resources we have and can renew and not greed.

              • weka

                I don’t follow. Are you saying that we will have an economy that will overcome the challenges of climate change and peak oil? I don’t see how you can talk about resources we have when trying to argue for increasing electricity use in a peak oil age. The point is we won’t have the resources to replace and maintain the levels of power consumption you are talking about.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  I don’t see how you can talk about resources we have when trying to argue for increasing electricity use in a peak oil age.

                  Since when have I ever argued for increasing electricity use?
                  I have, over the last few months or so, argued for Passive House standards on new houses, solar water heating, passive solar heating for buildings, bringing existing buildings as close to Passive House standards as possible and the use of heat pumps as they’re the most efficient heating available. All of this will significantly reduce electricity consumption.

                  Throw in a population cap and an understanding of what our Renewable Resource Base is and we’ll be able to maintain close to the same living standard we have now and that includes having computers and the internet. About the only thing we won’t have is cars and aircraft but I don’t really see that as a loss. Also you’d be looking at keeping that PC for about 10 years.

                  BTW, electricity generation is not dependent upon fossil oil.

                  Are you saying that we will have an economy that will overcome the challenges of climate change and peak oil?

                  Not Climate Change but certainly Peak Oil. Our present “economy” uses far more than what we actually need to and so a reduction to use only what we need to will bring us into sustainable resource use.

                  Please Note: I’m talking NZ here. The rest of the world’s fucked.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Please Note: I’m talking NZ here. The rest of the world’s fucked.

                    +1.0e^6

      • weka 7.2.2

        I’m not sure what you mean by unecessarily Draco. Burning wood doesn’t harm the environment (unless as Lanth points out it is being burnt incorrectly, or trees are being grown unsustainabley or felled without being replanted – all currenlty big issues). There are whole ecosystems (ones that have sustained themselves for tens/hundreds of thousands of years) that run based on burning wood, it’s a very natural thing.
         
        Here’s an outline of the issues comparing firewood to electricity and gas, by David Holmgren (one of the leaders in climate change/post-peak oil/sustainability issues).
         
        http://permacultureprinciples.com/downloads/41_firewood.pdf
         
        Note the paragraph on the bottom page where he says that heating only requires low grade sources of energy like wood or passive solar and that high quality sources like electricity should be reserved for lighting, communications, and electric motors.
         

        • Draco T Bastard 7.2.2.1

          And how many millions of people did you say was in these utopian villages?

          • weka 7.2.2.1.1

            What utopian villages?

            • Colonial Viper 7.2.2.1.1.1

              man/nature ecosystems have indeed used burning wood as a fuel renewably for millenia…with tiny population numbers and low industrial use.

              Only then is it sustainable.

  8. It seems to be a thing right-wingers do . Build monuments and white elephants with their name all, over. Tory dominated Waipa is now with the blessing of Upton (I love Banks, Richardson and Shipley) considering ,against public opinion; building a velodrome on the grounds of an eletist public school costing millions .Also a museum costing millions. Yet the rates are becoming un-affordable for many of the lower income ratepayers . The answer from the Tory Mayor when challenged is to say “you can always move . Once when told some ratepayers would find it hard to pay the increase , well its only $5 a week. I should add he’s a very wealthy man.

  9. Richard 9

    It comes down to money… by delaying the putting in of heating, money is saved

    crappy decision tho

    • Lanthanide 9.1

      Whose money is saved?

      Certainly not those who have to rely on inefficient standard electrical heaters instead of efficient woodburners, heat pumps or gas fires.

  10. MrSmith 10

    I’m no rocket scientist but anyone with half a brain and 8 plus months could have sorted the mess out in chch by now ‘for fuck sake’.
     
    First you make sure the people are alright, who gives a shit about the buildings, people first, but you may as well be talking in another language to Gerry he just doesn’t care about people.
     
    Brownlee should’ve been sacked months ago, I have been dealing with these imbeciles and we are talking stupidity on a large scale here, it’s like getting put through to a call centre in india/wherever and then trying to explain stuff to them, why should they care all they care about is getting you to stay on the line so they don’t have to talk to the next unsatisfied customer .
     
    Why would you put Brownlee incharge he couldn’t organize a piss up in brewery, unless it was his piss up, the man is an incompetent fool; he should be thrown on the fire at the first chance we get, at-least chch may get a little heat out of that blubber.

    • vto 10.1

      ha ha yep blubber burns well. May have to adjust the burner before heading into the cool cold Pegasus Bay on oar to lampoon next passing whale.

  11. Drakula 11

    HELPFULL HINTS TO KEEP WARM! !

    Emergency double glazing ok measure up your window and get some heavy duty sheets of polythene and tape them on the frame around the window. It does work I have tried it and it works even better with bubble pack. I may not look good but who cares!!

    Do the same with cracks on the walls. buy extra rugs etc.

    This should have been King Gerrys’ priority
    (1) Oil heaters and bar heaters for homes that are munted (2) Heat pumps that are properly installed and (3) allow residents to keep log heaters that are not stuffed.

    I think the main thread of this blog is the emergency action that needs to be taken care of in Christchurch due to the appauling disregard of the government. Therefore I don’t think the sustainability of hydro vs solar or Heat pump vs log burner is pertinent in the above context.

    Mr. Smith; My sentiments exactly!!!

  12. mik e 12

    Another easy way to insulate is ti buy if you can afford sheets of polystyrene 2.4m/1.2 cover windows completely at night cut to shape put up at night and take down during the day if you can,t afford that @ $25 a sheet . use polystyrene freezer boxes or grape containers cut them out to fit windows or gaps stick down with packing tape !
    Brownlee doesn,t care because the worst effected areas are Labour strong holds
    The only news media reporting the mess Brownlee is making is Campbell Live!

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      This post first appeared on The Daily Blog You’ve probably heard of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) by now and the widespread concerns around it but what about the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA) also being currently negotiated by… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    1 day ago
  • Health chickens coming home to roost as Dunedin loses right to train doctor...
    News today that Dunedin Hospital has lost orthopaedic training accreditation is a major blow and proves the Government’s prevarication is having devastating consequences, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Losing orthopaedic advanced training is serious. There is a knock on… ...
    2 days ago
  • $74,000 quarterly rise shows crisis out of control
    New figures out today showing Auckland house prices have spiked by a massive $74,000 in the past quarter is further evidence the city’s housing crisis has spiralled out of control, Labour’s “In spite of constant announcements and photo opportunities from… ...
    2 days ago
  • Democracy for Nauru now
    Murray McCully must send the strongest possible message to the Nauruan Government that New Zealand does not condone its actions given the disturbing developments there, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. “Right now we are seeing Nauru stripped of… ...
    2 days ago
  • Recovery needs more than a rebrand
    Today’s announcement of new governance arrangements for Canterbury seems to be nothing more than a fresh coat of paint on the same old approach, says Labour’s Canterbury Earthquake Recovery spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “The Canterbury Recovery has been too slow, with… ...
    2 days ago
  • Copper decision a victory for status quo, not Kiwi households
    New Zealanders hoping for cheaper copper broadband will be disappointed by the Commerce Commission’s latest decision in the long running saga to determine the price of copper, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran says. “In an apparent attempt to appease everyone,… ...
    2 days ago
  • It’s time for hard decisions in the Bay
     The Ruataniwha dam project is turning into a huge white elephant as the economics fail to stack up, says Labour’s Water spokesperson Meka Whaitiri.  “Ruataniwha simply doesn’t make economic sense when you look at other major irrigation schemes around the… ...
    2 days ago
  • More testing won’t lift student achievement
    Hekia Parata’s latest plan to subject school students to even more testing and assessment won’t do anything to lift the educational achievement of the kids who are struggling, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “New Zealand school students are already… ...
    2 days ago
  • Bad week for NZ economy gets worse
    The bad news for the New Zealand economy got worse this morning with the 8th successive drop in dairy prices at this morning’s global dairy auction, again exposing the absence of any Plan B from the National Government, Labour’s Finance… ...
    2 days ago
  • System failing to protect women and children from family violence
    Last week we called for mandatory child safety investigations in domestic violence cases. This came after the coronial inquiry into the deaths of Bradley and Ellen Livingstone and the verdict in the trial of the west Auckland boys charged with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • Backers banking on social bonds cash?
    The Government is refusing to say what the $29 million it has set aside for its controversial social bonds programme is for, raising suspicions it is an upfront payment to the project backers, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. A… ...
    3 days ago
  • Plastic Free July
    Today is the start of Plastic Free July. Since its inception in Perth, Western Australia four years ago, more and more people and organisations from around the world have joined the call to refuse single use plastic products. Nearly all… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    3 days ago
  • State house sell off Bill gives extraordinary powers
    The Government is about to give Ministers extraordinary powers to take direct personal control of selling state houses, exempting Ministers from normal legal requirements and leaving the sale process wide open for corruption, Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. The… ...
    3 days ago
  • Cash for charter schools, mould for state schools
    At a time when state schools are struggling in old, cold, mouldy buildings and can barely make ends meet, the National Government is shovelling cash at charter schools which aren’t even spending the funding on kids’ education, Labour’s Education spokesperson… ...
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand needs a wise response to climate change
    Today in Parliament I got to hear from a group of New Zealanders who are concerned for the future of our country. Called Wise Response, the group is a broad coalition of academics, engineers, lawyers, artists, sportspeople and others who… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    3 days ago
  • No alternative as waste scheme trashed
    Nick Smith must explain how he is going to prevent contamination of New Zealand’s ground and water with liquid and hazardous waste after scrapping the only monitoring scheme and offering no replacement, says Labour’s Environment Spokesperson Megan Woods. “From today,… ...
    3 days ago
  • Flawed system rates death traps as safe
    ACC Minister Nikki Kaye needs to come clean about what really lies behind the reclassification of 18 vehicles in her new motor vehicle registration system introduced today, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. "New Zealanders deserve the truth about the… ...
    3 days ago
  • Tiwai Smelter and 800 workers left in limbo
     Workers at Tiwai smelter and the people of Southland have once again been left in limbo over their future in the ongoing debacle over whether the plant stays open, says Labour’s Leader Andrew Little.  “It’s not good enough that after two years of… ...
    3 days ago
  • New twist in state house sell-off saga
    The Government has opened the door to buyers of state houses simply being landlords and not required to provide social services, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. The Prime Minister said at his post-Cabinet press conference buyers would not “have… ...
    3 days ago
  • Government fees will hit charities hard
    National’s decision to ignore the concerns of charities will see the voluntary sector face hundreds of thousands of dollars in new costs if the Policing (Cost Recovery) Amendment Bill passes, says Labour's Community and Voluntary Sector spokesperson Poto Williams. “National’s… ...
    4 days ago
  • Four out of ten for Simon’s Bridges
    The Transport Authority’s decision to fund only four of the 10 bridges promised in National’s shameless Northland by-election bribe is a huge embarrassment for Transport Minister Simon Bridges, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “After one by-election poll showed they… ...
    4 days ago
  • Falling consents adding to Auckland housing woes
    Falling numbers of building consents being issued in Auckland will add to the city’s housing shortfall and fuel skyrocketing house prices, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford “The Productivity Commission found there was a shortfall of around 32,000 houses by the… ...
    4 days ago
  • So Mr English, do you have a plan?
    DIpping confidence about jobs, wages and shrinking exports are highlighting the lack of a plan from the government to diversify the economy and build sustainable growth, Grant Robertson  Labour’s Finance Spokesperson said. " Data released over the last week… ...
    4 days ago
  • Serious risks to tenants and assets in sell-off
    Overseas evidence shows there are serious risks around the Government's plan to sell off state houses to social housing providers, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “In the Netherlands – where community housing providers supply the majority of social housing –… ...
    4 days ago
  • Land of milk and money
    Kiwi families are paying over the top prices for their milk and someone is creaming off big profits, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs spokesperson David Shearer. “In 2011 the Government told us high New Zealand milk prices were a natural result… ...
    6 days ago
  • MoBIE largesse doesn’t stop with TVs and hair-straighteners
    The number of MoBIE staff earning more than $150,000 has risen 23 per cent in just a year, Labour’s Economic Development Spokesperson David Clark says. Documents obtained from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment show there are now nearly… ...
    6 days ago
  • English wants to flog state houses to Aussies
    Bill English’s admission that he would sell hundreds of New Zealand’s state houses to the Australians is the latest lurch in the Government’s stumbling, half-baked housing policy, Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Bill English should face reality and admit his… ...
    1 week ago
  • Exports continue to fall as Government fails to diversify
    The Government quickly needs a plan to diversify our economy after new figures show that exports are continuing to fall due to the collapse in dairy exports, Labour's Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “Dairy exports fell 28 per cent compared… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government inaction leads to blurring of roles
    The Treasury wouldn’t have had to warn the Reserve Bank to stick to its core functions if the Government had taken prompt and substantial measures to rein in skyrocketing Auckland house prices, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The problems… ...
    1 week ago
  • Courthouse closures hitting regions
    The Government’s decision to shut down up to eight regional courthouses, some supposedly only temporarily for seismic reasons, looks unlikely to be reversed, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“The move has hit these regions hard, but appears to be a… ...
    1 week ago
  • A Victory for Te Tiriti o Waitangi
    This week my partner, who has a number of professions, was doing an archaeological assessment for a District Council. He showed me the new rules around archaeologists which require them to demonstrate “sufficient skill and competency in relation to Māori… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • Tough bar set for Ruataniwha dam
     Today’s final decision by the Tukituki Catchment Board of Inquiry is good news for the river and the environment, says Labour’s Water spokesperson Meka Whaitiri. “Setting a strict level of dissolved nitrogen in the catchment’s waters will ensure that the… ...
    1 week ago
  • Minister for Women and National missing the mark – part two
    The Minister for Women was in front of the select committee yesterday answering questions about her plans for women. Some useful context is that we used to have a Pay and Employment Equity Unit within the then Department of Labour… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 week ago
  • Lavish penthouse spend confirms culture of extravagance
    At the same time thousands of New Zealanders are being locked out of the property market, the Government is spending up on a lavish New York penthouse for its diplomats, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. News that taxpayers… ...
    1 week ago
  • Māori Television exodus cause for concern
    The shock departure of yet another leading journalist from the Native Affairs team raises further concern the Board and Chief Executive are dissatisfied with the team’s editorial content, says Labour’s Māori Development spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “Annabelle Lee is an experienced… ...
    1 week ago
  • Million-plus car owners to pay too much ACC
    More than a million car owners will pay higher ACC motor vehicle registration than necessary from July, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “During a select committee hearing this morning it was revealed that car owners would have been charged… ...
    1 week ago
  • Bill will restore democracy to local councils
    A new Labour Member’s Bill will restore democracy to local authorities and stop amalgamations being forced on councils. Napier MP Stuart Nash’s Local Government Act 2002 (Greater Local Democracy) Bill will be debated by Parliament after being pulled from the… ...
    1 week ago
  • Minister for Women again misses the mark – part one
    Yesterday I asked the Minister for Women about the government’s poor performance on it’s own target of appointing women to 45% of state board positions. I challenged why she’d put out a media release celebrating progress this year when the… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 week ago
  • Banks enter Dragon’s Den in pitch for Government’s mental health experi...
    Overseas banks and their preferred providers were asked to pitch their ideas for bankrolling the Government’s social bonds scheme to a Dragon’s Den-style panel, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. Dragon’s Den was a reality television series where prospective ‘entrepreneurs’… ...
    1 week ago
  • Global Mode bullying won’t stop people accessing content
    It’s disappointing that strong-arm tactics from powerful media companies have meant Global Mode will not get its day in court. Today a settlement was reached terminating the Global Mode service, developed in New Zealand by ByPass Network Services and used… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    1 week ago
  • More questions – why was the Former National Party President involved wit...
    Today in Parliament Murray  McCully said the reason Michelle Boag was involved in 2011 in the Saudi farm scandal was in her capacity as a member of the New Zealand Middle East Business Council. The problem with that answer is… ...
    1 week ago
  • Minister must explain Maori TV interference
    Te Ururoa Flavell must explain why he told Maori TV staff all complaints about the CEO must come to him – months before he became the Minister responsible for the broadcaster, Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Sources have told… ...
    1 week ago
  • KiwiSaver takes a hammering after the end of kick-start
    National seems hell bent on destroying New Zealand’s saving culture given today’s news that there has been a drop in new enrolments for KiwiSaver, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “New enrolments for the ANZ Investments KiwiSaver scheme have plunged… ...
    1 week ago
  • Straight answers needed on CYF role
    The Government needs to explain the role that Child, Youth and Family plays in cases where there is evidence that family violence was flagged as a concern, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Arden says. “The fact that CYF is refusing to… ...
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister confuses his political interests with NZ’s interest
    The Prime Minister’s statement in Parliament yesterday that a Minister who paid a facilitation payment to unlock a free trade agreement would retain his confidence is an abhorrent development in the Saudi sheep scandal, Opposition leader Andrew Little says.  ...
    1 week ago
  • #raisethequota
    Last Saturday was World Refugee Day. I was privileged to spend most of my day with the amazing refugee communities in Auckland. Their stories have been inspiring and reflect the ‘can-do’ Kiwi spirit, even though they come from all different… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Dairy conversions causing more pollution than ever, report shows
    The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment (PCE) released two reports on freshwater quality and management last Friday. The water quality report shows that dairy conversions are hurting water quality and says that despite great efforts with fencing and planting, large… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Employers want urgent action on health and safety
    Moves by National to water down health and safety reforms have been slammed by employers – the very group the Government claims is pushing for change, says Labour’s spokesperson for Labour Relations Iain Lees-Galloway. “The Employers and Manufacturers’ Association has… ...
    2 weeks ago

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