- Date published:
1:02 pm, October 29th, 2012 - 62 comments
Categories: disaster, ETS, national, science - Tags: 100% stupid
Bugger the environment – who needs it? That’s the message from National. Domestically, they’d rather that we didn’t know:
The Government is stopping the five-yearly State of the Environment report.
Put together by the Ministry of the Environment, the report is the largest stock-take of trends relating to land, water, air, plants and animals.
The next report was expected in December, but the Government has decided instead to look at the basic data for each area. … Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment Jan Wright said that is not good enough, because the data is not compiled, analysed, or compared. …
Green MP Eugenie Sage said the Government is just trying to keep New Zealanders in the dark about environmental problems.
Internationally, they’d rather that we didn’t bother:
New Zealand may quit Kyoto
New Zealand has been tipped to quit the Kyoto Protocol, designed to cut global emissions.
Government officials next month travel to Doha in Qatar for the latest round of negotiations on the treaty, but with less than four weeks before the summit, acting Climate Change Minister Simon Bridges says the Government has “not made a decision” on its commitment. … But the actions of participants in the carbon market, and market signs, suggest the Government is preparing to walk away.
Brought to you by National, the party of “Drill it! Mine it! Sell it!”, this stupid, short-term, destructive thinking lies at the heart of every failed society. The difference is that this time the stakes are global.
“Drill it! Mine it! Sell it!”
– If only…
Worse. Government flooded whole valleys, took kia out of the mouths of Maori, then when challenged Maori where told everyone would benefit, now government finalizes the legal position of terra nullus by offering a few trinkets to Maori without them having any say whatsoever.
Imagine the idea, see, hear and speak no evil. First Maori saw their land flooded, then heard no debate over compensation, then finally Government speaks for Maori in ‘shares’ as the remedy.
Maori never gave the land over to government for a dam, Maori were not compensated, Maori now are being offered a discussion that will not include returning the land EVER. When the concrete finally decays and the dam is removed will the land be owned partially by foriegners, maybe even fully by the ‘market’ if as it seems obvious the whole deal with Maori rights is to remove them from the state owned assets. Sure there will be some Maori happy with shares.
Neo-liberals love locking in decline by ignoring well reasoned contest with a flat denial,
‘Maori have no rights to water’.
Take NR, a commentator in discussion of climate change made
the claim that climate change debate had paid for him and his
kids ski holiday. So? Ignore the problem, ignore the remedy,
and then outright slam any possibility of redress with anecdotal nonsense.
The problem with National government is they don’t have to have a position
because their position doesn’t and won’t ever include debate over remedies,
redress or even change in directions. They are a hard right party and that’s
why the ACT party vote has collapsed.
The fundamental question is who will own New Zealand/Aotearoa in the future? Maybe a few countries will scrap over who gets what. But we will no longer own ourselves.
Err hang on there Dr Terry; maybe it will be just a few corporations that will scrap over who gets what. Goldman Sachs are already trying to own Europe. See Independent ‘What price democracy’. Sorry I’m not good with links.
I agree with Chalupa…why not just get going?
r0b, you forgot the removal of democracy in Canterbury for the purposes of increasing intensive farming and decreasing environmental ‘obstacles’.
I have given up on Canterbury’s environment – it has been and is being sacrificed to industry. The entire Canterbury Plains may as well be concreted over. Bleeaaargh…… what a horrid place.
hmmmm, perhaps someone can commission that 5-yearly report independently of the government ….?
Addressed over on NRT: National’s tyranny
“r0b, you forgot the removal of democracy in Canterbury for the purposes of increasing intensive farming and decreasing environmental ‘obstacles’.”
But obviously Canterbury people are too dumb to recognise the huge economic benefits of doubling irrigation. And clearly the environmental impact is totally unimportant. I mean, which would you rather have? Rich people with flash cars or once a year swim in a river? Economy clearly trumps environment for our grandchildren. Right?
Yep. This is the biggest greediest rort in NZ’s history ever.
It is completely and utterly about money money money. Nothing more.
In this case it is the farmers turn to display that most heinous of human characteristics – greed.
edit: actually, I forgot other large scale greedy events in our history – killing all the seals, cutting all hte kauri forests, taking all the orange roughy. Now it is take all the water and dump all the shit.
Oh, but its worse than that surely. China will come to expect huge milk supplies to its children for generations to come. So we bleed the country of water to fuel diaries, accelerate climate change, have to bring even more water to feed diaries to keep up with demand from China, a growing military power in the 21st century. All because the rent takers cannot dare diversify outside of farming, banking and property speculation for fear they will lose control and start NZ finally on become a first world nation.
And what is ironic aero, is that milk and dairy products are not part of China’s traditional diet, western style confectionery products are being foisted upon them.
That is the area our journalists need to be looking at ; who is promoting milk products in China? We very rarely have a peek into that side of the story.
“In this case it is the farmers turn to display that most heinous of human characteristics – greed.”
I think we need to be more nuanced in our argument. I haven’t looked lately, but a few years ago at least some of the traditional sheep and cattle farmers in north canty were against the proposed industrial irrigation of that landscape (not that I think traditional sheep and beef farming is particularly good for the land either, but that’s another kettle of dead fish).
I’m also mindful of Jeanette Fitzimmons saying a long time ago that a lot of farmers don’t support the Fed Farmers line. Maybe the non-greedy farmers need to get politicised, and not lumping them all in the same evil group would help.
Agreed weka, but sometimes a slap is better than a tickle to wake people up.
Of course nobody would surely expect that farmers have a dosing of greed that is anymore abundant than any other group of people in NZ. Most everyone is pretty similar methinks and it is just particular circumstance that throws up various of the human character.
In this case it is dairy farming on the Canterbury Plains. The opportunity is there for HUGE capital gain right now. These irrigation projects, particularly the big Central Plains Water one, are due to start next year. Farm owners will very much be tallying up their windfall – and if not for themselves then for their famly to follow. The opportunity to become very much much richer is very real and very immediate. Most people would take that opportunity. So while I say farmers, I really mean people… who happen to be farmers.
Other than that, the greed needs to be exposed for what it is. People in my industry get accused of being greedy all the time – and many of them are. I don’t see that greed needs tip-toeing around.
… and a bit further …. so is it really greed? Well briefly, most of those involved in these schemes would not seem to have a need for further wealth. And when in that situation and the ones with the opportunity pursue it no matter the cost I think that ticks most of the boxes in the greed definition.
Key and his crooks will be hung for this treason against the environment.
By duly appointed representatives of the workers come the revolution, Comrade.
You know the drill – Stage Revolution- Eliminate all the bougeoise counter-revolutionary elements – Stuff the economy up – Become capitalist again.
Interesting take on how the system works, Gosman.
Another version goes- con the voters into voting National using the full powers of the media, money and manipulative spindoctors- stuff the economy up by rort, robbery and rapine- become socialist again when the people start wondering what’s happening, wake up, and wait till the next election…………….
Hooton, your lot could not attend to irrigation and doing business through means of democracy and existing processes. So what does your lot do? Takes it by outright theft.
Fucking wankers and arseholes.
By whom? For whom tolls the bell Matthew?
Why my boy, it tolls for thee.
Well said; it will also toll when a severe drought hits Canterbury. I live there I have seen the huge destruction of the environment. Every day wind breaks are being torn down!
I’m getting out!!!
Spoken with the smugness of someone who knows the game is rigged in their favour
tinfoilhat. Sadly, not likely at all. Literally, this government gets away with (figuratively speaking) sheer murder, over and over. In effect, people like Hooten congratulate them upon this, all the way toward the ultimate precipice.
How will they intend to deal with a polluted water table that supplies ChCh drinking water?
the users of the water and the dumpers of the shit (the dairy farmers, nobody else) certainly don’t. They don’t care one bit. This is seen in their (in)action over existing areas where the cow shit has fucked the town supply such as at Dunsandel.
In return and given that it costs more to dump rubbish at the rubbish dump than it does to buy potatoes now, I routinely take my rubbish into the countryside and throw it out the window, especially near dairy farms.
[lprent: The comments in reply by chris73 and vto were sent to trash as being somewhat pointless. Please try again. ]
good idea mr prent, sometimes i can’t bear to read what i’ve written …………
😈 I usually don’t mind as it dampens out pretty fast. But that strand was deteriorating..
No problem there Dv. When, not if, the famously pure artesian water supply for Christchurch does become undrinkable the answer lies in private enterprise. Purification plants will be built by private firms, the water chlorinated tastefully, and the bill sent to Christchurch rate-payers. Would account for 3-4% increase in rates but it would serve the residents right for being so accepting/indifferent of the current Government’s actions.
Economy trumps Environment these days.
National will probably sell off the water supply next, and Council policy is to pile on local government debt, increase rates and increase their salaries (which they sack staff most of the time to pay for). National’s plan for the future is Auckland where you have to pay for water from private companies, suffer astronomical rates increases every year while dealing with corrupt, anti-democratic administration.
That’s right ianmac, except by the time the shit hits the fan, we will be well into the energy descent necessitated by peak oil and the CFC, so the capacity to make clean water will be sorely undermined if not impossible.
“Let them drink Coke.” A modern day Marie Antoinette would understand this. It’s one of the big selling points for Coca Cola. A safe substitute for water. In third world countries.
Presumably you need potable water to make coke though.
Yep, you get it in from somewhere else.
And then, finally, there is nowhere else…….
One of the great things that I loved about my hometown of Christchurch was the wonderful quality of the water. As a boy I used to drink after a game of rugby or cricket from an artesian water source at the mill where Fendalton Road meets Hagley Park. Cold, pure, free water.
Now I live in another town with the same quality of water. One of the great things about this place. I hate to think of the loss of such resources to contamination. Contamination that is avoidable, not necessary.
I find it heartbreaking too. When will NZ wake up?
You think the rest of the world will want to sell clean water/coke to NZ, the little bits of clean water that are left? I think you will find that the nations with the biggest sticks will be first in line, and NZ will be well down the pecking order.
That’s why you need a house in Hawaii.
Shouldn’t ‘we’ place the blame for all this planet fucking at the feet of the people responsible … and that is the fools that keep producing more planet fuckers IE parents pumping out more children.
If we are going to feed 7 to 9 billion people over the next 40 years or so ‘we’ have to produce as much food as the planet has grown in the past 10,000 years, it will not happen without massive environmental damage, the only way for this not to happen is to reduce the amount of people, ‘we’ will not do that voluntarily , so it will be up to nature to take control, as she seems to be doing on the east coast of the US today, go for it nature.
They’re only to blame if they knew in advance about the situation. When my parents had their kids in the 60s, having 4 children seemed entirely reasonable.
Parents like your parents ?
At last we have some credible politicians who are prepared to say fuck off you Kyoto Protocol doomsayers.
They want to steal from the poor in NZ to feed a few in banquet style.
Just bloody robbers.
Silly Green Co Leader Russell Norman wants us greens on low incomes to eat out of the gutter.
“Silly Green Co Leader Russell Norman wants us greens on low incomes to eat out of the gutter.”
 🙄
I don’t know Norman’s personal views, but I’d bet it’s fairly similar to the Greens’ policy which is to support sustainable food production. No gutters involved.
You are in fact talking a system designed to produce profit for shareholders by having people work for money so they can buy un-sustainably produced food. Such a system is incredibly wasteful, and ALWAYS requires some of the people to eat from the gutter.
And how about your grandkids?
Life will go on no matter what Kyoto Protocol tax’s are applied, but it does make it harder for the poor i.e. majority of the Greens / Maori, us at the bottom. No cash/relief will be recycled down to us because quite simply Norman will never have the opportunity to lead in the way of his vision.
Its just stupid talk,
First up, you’re no green, TEA. A plant of some sort, obviously, but not a green one. Secondly, green voters are not, by and large, poor. They are, as Vicky 32 regularly points out, middle class. I suspect the ‘us’ you claim to be part of doesn’t actually include you.
Only if it’s done under capitalism but that would mean that the poor will see no change from what’s happening now. They’ll still be getting fucked to enrich a few.
It’s one scam after another for Johnokeyo’s hollow men puppet theatre, their poodle hollow boy Hooton hooting for them.
Don’t forget blubber boy and DPF along with a compliant MSM lead by fairfacked, Radio network and the SOE poodle known as TVNZ.
Sigh – another item for this list:
has been caught out repeatedly lying in the run up to and during the election campaign about its real intentions in relation to the environment
celebrated the opening of the foreign-owned Pike River Coal Ltd mine on DOC land adjacent to the Paparoa National Park from which 1 megatonne of coal will be extracted per year for the next 20 years – Pike River Coal Ltd has announced that it has found additional coal in the national park
removed a proposed efficiency standard (MEPS) on incandescent lightbulbs
reversed a moratorium on building new gas/oil/coal power stations
removed the bio fuel subsidy
scrapped the scheme that would have penalised imported vehicles producing high emissions
removed regulations for water efficient new housing
renewed leases on sensitive high country farms which were meant to return to DOC
reversed restrictions on the freeholding of vast swathes of land on the edge of the Southern Lakes
arbitrarily excised 400 hectares from the brand new Oteake Conservation Park, including the most important and, ecologically, the rarest part of the new Park, the tussock and shrubland that went right down to the banks of the Manuherikia River, to enable future access to lignite
said nothing to say in regard to the World Commission on Protected areas of IUCN’s severe criticism of its intention to investigate mineral resources and mining opportunities in protected conservation areas including our three UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Te Wahi Pounamu-South West New Zealand, Tongariro National Park and the Sub Antarctic Islands
approved two prospecting permit applications lodged by Australian iron-ore giant Fortescue Metals Group subsidiary FMG Pacific lodged in June – areas covered by the two-year permits include an 8204-square-kilometre area of seabed adjoining the west coast from Cape Reinga to the Manukau Harbour and a 3798-square-kilometre prospecting area of land from Cape Reinga to the Kaipara Harbour including Ninety Mile Beach, the west side of the Aupouri Peninsula, Kaitaia and the Hokianga.
approved an additional prospecting permit for Fortesque Metals in relation to 3568sq km right next door to the Kahurangi National Park where the Heaphy Track is
was forced to release its Ministry of Economic Development (MED) report under the Official Information Act that proclaims “significant mineral potential” in the Fiordland, Kahurangi and Paparoa national parks – the report said the Waitutu area of the Fiordland National Park had sufficient petroleum reserves to be “worthy” of inclusion in a review of conservation land protected from mining
secretly granted the minerals industry the right to veto proposed National Park boundaries and permission for any such vetoes to be kept confidential – in spite of recommendations from its own officials against any such a veto
Minster of Conservation Tim Grosser, on 29 August 2009, called for caring New Zealanders to halt their “emotional hysteria” and recognise that conservation land should be mined for minerals and went on to say “Mining in a modern, technological way can have a negligible effect”
Associate Minister of Conservation Kate Wilkinson, in an interview in “Canterbury Farming” rubished her own department, DOC, suggesting it was incapable of looking after the high country reserves and parks under its control
gutted the home insulation scheme
pulled $300 million out of public transport, walking and cycling schemes and added it to a pot of $2 billion to ‘upgrade’ state highways
changed the law to provide billions of dollar in subsidies for polluters via the ETS casino which is now a target for scamming by international criminals
begun a process of gutting the Resource Management Act to make it difficult/impossible for the public to lodge appeals against developers
removed the ability of Auckland to introduce a fuel levy to fund planned public transport upgrades
left electrification of the national rail network up in the air without promised funding commitments
removed the Ministry for the Environment’s programme to make Government Departments ‘carbon neutral’
removed funding for public tv advertising on sustainability and energy efficiency
pulled funding for small-town public litter bin recycling schemes
cabinet ministers expressing public support the bulldozing of Fiordland
reduced Department of Conservation funding by about $50 million over three years
canceled funding for the internationally acclaimed ‘Enviroschools’ programme
usurped the democratic role of local Councils of determining policies for their citizens by requiring the abandonment of the efficient and well-established tree protection rules for urban areas
set about revamping Auckland governance in a way that is likely to greatly reduce the ‘Environmental Watchdog’ role of the the current Regional Council
removed Auckland’s metropolitan limits and opened the gateway for unfettered urban sprawl
defended internationally the importation of rain-forest-wrecking palm kernel and stood silent while Federated Farmers called Greenpeace “terrorists”
stood silent while Godfrey Bloom, a Member of the European Parliament and infamous Climate Change Denialist, publicly rejoiced in the 1985 bombing of the Greenpeace Rainbow Warrior – who was doing so while standing on a dock next to the replacement vessel
took a 0% emissions reduction target to Copenhagen. Yes, seriously, that isn’t a misprint – that was the lower bound of their negotiation platform – then missed the 01/02/10 deadline for commitment to action it had agreed to – meanwhile 55 of the 80 countries which attended did make the deadline
secretly cancelled the internationally recognised scheme for the mandatory labelling of exotic woods to ensure the timber has not been taken from rain forests in direct contradiction of its own statements made at the 13th World Forestry Congress in Argentina
supported the Department of Conservation’s decision to open up the pristine Cathedral Cove to an ice-cream franchise
given the Department of Conservsation $1.7 million to further develop commercial activities on DOC land and started an “off set” plan allowing company’s to damage the conservation estate if they agree to improve land elsewhere – no monitoring regime has been suggested on put in place
left DOC director-general Al Morrison to announce that DOC is to charge for services that had been free and, to soften the public up to the idea that there will be more “energy generation schemes” operating on DOC land
taken no action to reduce existing pollution pouring into the Manawatu River and is “leaving it up to industry” to come up with solutions to heal the river which was described by the Cawthorn Institute as “one of the worst polluted in the Western world”
announced a $1.1 million industry subsidy to kick start marine farming without identifying no-go areas nor putting in place a consultation process for individiuals, communities, and other general coastal users
blamed New Zealanders after a Japanese whaling ship deliberately smashed into a smaller, more vulnerable craft in the open sea
was forced to release documents under the Official Information Act which confirm that DOC has “giving up” on ecologically valuable high-country land in the Mackenzie Basin because of funding cuts. The released documents cite “statements made by ministers”, “diminishing funding” and the Government’s new high-country policies as reasons for the changed stance – the comments from DOC were made after Land Information New Zealand (Linz), which manages the tenure review process, ignored DOC’s previous conservation recommendations for the farms
used former National Party minister and current director of Open Country Cheese – a company convicted of filthy farming practices – Wyatt Creech to head up an enquiry into Environment Canterbury which had been standing up the dairy farmers’ demands for more and more water resources and less and less regulation. The Creech report recommended the Environmental Canterbury be sacked and replaced with government appointments and the voters of Canterbury do without democracy until the water situation had been resolved. The Canterbury area holds 50 percent of New Zealand’s fresh water reserves and 50 percent of the water required for hyrdo energy. The Creech report said Environmental Centerbury put too much focus on the environment.
Despite international condemnation for knowing next to nothing about the parlous state of the New Zealand fisheries, National Ltd™ bucks international trends, pours more acid on the 100% Pure brand and increases the bluefin tuna quota.
New Zealand is subject to international criticism for its backing of commericial whaling which National Ltd supports
Government-owned company Solid Energy runs an essay competition entitled “The role of coal in sustainable energy solutions for New Zealand” for school children. First prize is a trip to New Zealand’s largest coal customer, China.
Supported access fees for entrance onto DOC walkways – fee introduced following cuts to DOC’s budget.
New Zealand’s environment would profit from mining national parks, Conservation Minister Kate Wilkinson says.
Department of Conservation director-general Al Morrison said the conservation estate created “opportunities to do a whole lot for a lot of different people”.
“We’ve got to get away from this idea that somehow we have to protect one-third of New Zealand for a certain constituency and put it in a jar of formaldehyde and leave it.”
State coal miner Solid Energy could get an extra slice of the action if highly sensitive conservation land is opened to gold, silver and other prospecting.
Energy and Resources Minister Gerry Brownlee said Solid Energy’s work could be widened to include other minerals and resources, or it could form part of a new state-owned enterprise to maximise government returns from any mining.
He did not rule out the company, which produces 80 per cent of New Zealand’s coal, having a role in mining gold and other minerals on Great Barrier Island and other conservation areas being eyed by the Government http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/3519703/Golden-possibility-for-state-coal-miner
source for most of stuff in relation to national parks
National Lied during the election about its intentions in regard to the environment
“National will have policies that reflect the fact that living on a diet of carbon will be increasingly bad – bad for the world and bad for our economy. We will have policy that encourages ‘climate friendly’ choices like windmills, hydro power and tree planting, and reduces the desire for ‘climate unfriendly’ behaviours, like burning coal,” Mr Key promised in May 2007.
“National will provide Kiwis with good signals about the cars that are the best for the environment. We will do this by ensuring our emission and noise standards for new vehicles keep up with international standards and practices and by introducing more sophisticated emissions and noise testing for existing vehicles. If Kiwis have a highly polluting or excessively noisy car, we think they should know about it and have an incentive to do something about it.”
“National proudly shares many of your values: like you, we want to protect our unique native species. We want our children and grandchildren to be able to swim in our rivers and lakes. We believe in sound environmental science. We are committed to high environmental standards.”
If you want to check out the latest “keyhole surgery” zero in on the ridge south & slightly east of Reefton on Google Earth and you’ll see Oceana Golds brand new high tech gold mine.
video talking about dairy farming in the McKenzie
Up to 200 calves were induced on Fonterra chairman Sir Henry van der Heyden’s Putaruru farms this calving season in a controversial practice to lift milk production.
The practice, which Sir Henry has not denied, has prompted claims of hypocrisy, as Fonterra says it doesn’t support inductions, and even a call for Sir Henry to stand down while the matter is investigated.
Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment Jan Wright’s report, “Lignite and climate change: The high cost of low grade coal” was meant to be released at midday today.
The report tackles the climate change ramifications of plans by two companies, state-owned miner Solid Energy and L&M Group, to mine lignite in Otago and Southland and convert it to diesel.
a third of new zealand lakes have poor water quality
Dr Norman was sceptical of the reasons why the release of the report was delayed. It was to be released last week.
“It is interesting timing that the report’s release was delayed during the World Dairy Summit in Auckland, when the report concludes that pastoral land use is associated with the ecological deterio
New Zealand’s main centres have the worst air in Australasia and Auckland is the most polluted with twice the concentration of damaging airborne particles as Sydney, the World Health Organisation says.
But Environment Minister Nick Smith yesterday challenged the accuracy of the WHO figures
37689 (2010). Brendon Burns to the Minister of Health (09 Dec 2010): Has he received any advice on the current quality of drinking water in Reidston; if so, what, if any, actions will he be taking concerning that advice?
Hon Tony Ryall (Minister of Health) replied: Reply due: 17 Dec 2010
secret meeting with boss of company responsible for massive oil spill and which wants to drill offshore New Zealand
Bay of Plenty Regional Council is concerned the importance of environmental compliance is falling on deaf ears for a portion of the farming community. This follows three cases heard in the Tauranga District Court yesterday relating to pollution reaching waterways.
Fed Farmers have welcomed National’s $400 million water storage and irrigation investment announced yesterday.
Of course Fed Farmers would. Damming rivers to store water for irrigation means farmers can convert more land to dairying, which is highly profitable at the moment.
But Fed Farmers pretend that damming rivers to store water for irrigation won’t hurt the environment.
Fisherman Ray Brokenshire fears it will be too late in five years to save the Opihi River from the effects of degradation.
The Temuka man is involved in plans to create an Opihi River group and wants concerned people to contact him to discuss river issues, including problems caused by the toxic algae phormidium.
“A lot of us at our age remember what it was like. What we are trying to say is it’s in an awful state.”
An Environment Canterbury (ECan) warning remains in place cautioning people to avoid the river at State Highway 1 because of the risk of exposure to toxins from phormidium, and some anglers will no longer fish in the river because they say the fish are smelly and inedible.
As of yesterday an ECan warning was also in place at Waipopo. A warning at the Saleyards Bridge has been removed.
Some South Canterbury anglers have blamed the growth in phormidium on a design feature of the Opuha Dam.
Barry Stone told the Timaru Herald last week the algae increase was a result of how the dam company took its water, which was by a single-take and not a multiple-take system.
Government statements re: RMA delays are flat out bullshit
National Plays down risks of yellow cake shopments passing through New Zealand waters
The New Zealand Government is jeopardising its good name in international negotiations at this fortnight’s United Nations Climate Change Conference in Durban. It has been identified as one of a small number of States stalling progress in forming an international climate agreement. Other parties have privately condemned its conduct and predict it could risk the possibility of a credible outcome.“Negotiators and observers have been telling us that New Zealand is taking an exceptionally irresponsible position in the talks”, says Rachel Dobric of the New Zealand Youth Delegation.
The 2nd place Fossil goes to New Zealand for proposing the most Flexible Mechanism imaginable with no oversight or review. Bring on the wild west. They want to be able to use any market mechanisms they wish with absolutely no oversight or international review! There would be no way to ensure that the units from one mechanism have not been sold two or three times to another such mechanism. This would likely unleash a wild west carbon market with double or triple counting of offsets and a likely increase of greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere.
Dirty dairying is one of our country’s biggest environmental problems, resulting in polluted waterways and undrinkable (and unswimmable) water. But the government fobs off concern about it, pointing to the “Clean Streams Accord”, an agreement between Fonterra, central government and regional councils, under which Fonterra promises to get its farmers to clean up their act voluntarily. Every year, MAF produces an annual snapshot of progress (collected here), and every year it shows that farmers are slowly but surely fencing their waterways, complying with the RMA, and setting nutrient budgets. So we don’t have a problem, right?
Wrong. That report is based on what farmers tell Fonterra assessors every year. And it turns out that they lie, overstating their compliance on excluding stock from waterways by 100%:
New Zealand’s fresh water can never be as clean and pure as it once was, but action must be taken to improve the quality of rivers, lakes and wetlands, the parliamentary commissioner for the environment says.
In a new report for MPs on water quality, released today, commissioner Jan Wright says “clear clean cool streams, full of life” still flowed through forests in remote parts of the country.
Professional surfer and environmentalist Dave Rastovich worries that the world class waves at Raglan are being threatened by proposed iron ore seabed mining in New Zealand’s coastal waters.
Kiwi-born Rastovich attended a recent protest in Raglan that coincided with the arrival of Andy Sommerville of Australian mining company Trans Tasman Resources (TTR).
Sommerville was there to meet local iwi at Poihakena Marae to discuss TTR’s plans to extract one billion tonnes of iron ore along the west coast of the North Island, a process that involves moving five billion tones of sand.
It’s not just the waves that are threatened, there are also fears for the critically endangered Maui’s Dolphin.
Economic issues top the list of worries for most New Zealanders, while environmental worries have dropped in people’s priorities, according to the latest state of the nation report by pollsters Roy Morgan
It brings into question the scientific models created by New Zealand and the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) to allow fishing.
Global greenhouse gas emissions could rise 50 per cent by 2050 without more ambitious climate policies, as fossil fuels continue to dominate the energy mix, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) says.
Imagine, if you will, taking your children down to the park to find an overseas’ owned company had set up a dairy farm in one corner. Over time the shit builds up and flows onto the play ground. You complain, but are told the farm is under no obligation to treat or retain their waste and the council has no powers to do anything about the mess. You wonder why this was allowed to happen.
Well the government changed the rules and this company had only to apply to National’s new Environmental Protection Agency or (EPA) for the use of the land, pay a small application fee, and next thing, the company has the use of the land for eternity.
This is not fiction, it’s what’s going on right now in the Marlborough Sounds. Anyone can apply to the EPA to set up a salmon farm, and pollute the surrounding water for free, paying no rent or rates. Unbelievable but true!
Expansion of fish-farming in the Marlborough Sounds could cause unacceptable changes in the coastal environment, says Nelson-based research company Cawthron.
Auckland has New Zealand’s worst air pollution which is at levels nearly double that of Sydney, World Health Organisation data out today reveals.
Has anyone noticed the word “environment” steadily and strategically being removed from the lexicon of local and central government?
Staff within the Department of Conservation, already reeling from nationwide cuts and greatly reduced budgets, are now required to put “Conservation for prosperity” at the bottom of their emails. Prosperity for whom? The Ministry for the Environment also has the relatively new mantra of “Environmental stewardship for a prosperous New Zealand”. At least the “E” word makes an appearance, but then it is the Ministry for the Environment after all.
Synopsis: Every year, New Zealand drops huge quantities of poison-laced food into its forest ecosystems; enough poison to kill its human population 4 times over, every year. No country has ever done anything remotely similar, on such a scale… The targets are possums and rats, but the poisonous bait kills everything that eats it – including native birds, deer, farm stock, pets, and even insects. The US manufacturer advises that all uneaten baits, and carcasses, must be recovered, and burned or buried deeply. But the rules have changed in New Zealand. Baits and carcasses are left to decompose, where they fall. Poisoning Paradise investigates the scientific theory and rationalisation that drives this extraordinary practice, and provides a close-up look at one of the worlds most deadly poisons…
Parliamentary commissioner for the environment Jan Wright was in Southland last week speaking about 1080 and lignite. SCOT MacKAY caught up with her.
Prime Minister John Key has dismissed claims he is placing pressure on the Conservation Department (DoC) by appearing at the opening of Bathurst Resources’ new office.
Environment groups and the Green Party said Key’s appearance would be a sign to DoC – which is to decide on access agreements for Bathurst’s flagship West Coast project – of what the Prime Minister wanted it to do.
More than a third of Auckland’s beaches fail water quality checks and are closed for swimming
Auckland beaches are closed as high levels of pollution have forced people out of the water for safety reasons. Warning signs have popped up on Judges Bay Beach, in Parnell, after water quality tests this week found an extremely high concentration of the bacteria enterococci.
22 March 2012 at 4:24 pm
This is from Penny Bright in ‘Smith to go’ post.
Is this not a major ‘conflict of interest’ if Prime Minister John Key stands to personally profit from opencast coal mining on conservation land, because of his personal shareholding in the Bank of America, which, in turn is a significant shareholder in Bathurst Resources Ltd?
Whose interests are being served by NZ Prime Minister John Key?
As of 24 February 2012, the Bank of America was a substantial holder of shares in Bathurst Resources Ltd:
“Class of Securities (4) – Ordinary
Present Notice “Person’s Votes 72,302,308 Voting Power (5) 10.44%
NZ Prime Minister John Key is a shareholder in the Bank Of America.
Access to some of New Zealand’s most endangered species and isolated islands is up for sale to help fund a pest programme in the Southern Ocean.
The Department of Conservation is opening up berths on some of its most exclusive trips – including to the Snares Islands and Dusky Sound – to be auctioned off on TradeMe today.
Money raised will go towards the “Million Dollar Mouse” project, which aims to find $1 million to eradicate mice off the Antipodes Islands.
The Antipodes are an ecological treasures that lie 800km southeast of Bluff, home to rare species like the Antipodes Island snipe and the Antipodes Island parakeet.
The Government wants to make more money from its conservation estate and is eying opportunities for increased revenue gathering.
A Statement of Intent setting out the direction for the Department of Conservation (DOC) over the next five years says New Zealand is facing ongoing biodiversity losses at the same time as overall public spending is coming under growing pressure, so new ways of funding conservation must be found.
”The Department must fundamentally change its approach to continue the momentum for conservation. This means not just finding new sources of revenue . . .but changing the mindset and behaviours of the organisation as a whole,” the statement said.
Twenty years of broken promises and failures to meet environmental obligations have left New Zealand with little to be proud of, according to a new “wake-up call” report issued on the eve of a global summit.
The World Wildlife Fund report, Beyond Rio, has slated successive governments for failing the environment since promises made at the original Rio Earth Summit in 1992, and says the country now risks some of the highest rates of biodiversity loss on Earth unless urgent action is taken.
A Fonterra director whose company has been fined for fouling a Bay of Plenty waterway with cow effluent declared to the dairy co-op there had been a “one-off breach” on one of his farms. But the judge who yesterday ordered Colin Armer’s firm to pay $72,000 disagreed – instead citing a “systemic” failure that could have been prevented by better monitoring . . .
Frankly it’s wrong to claim New Zealand has the environmental laws and regulations to control oil and gas development on the continental shelf. There is no equivalent of the Resource Management Act to control oil and gas activity outside of the territorial sea (12 nautical miles offshore).
In a sneaky move the Government is to over-ride agreed coastal plans and allow marine farming consent holders in the Waikato and Marlborough to move from mussel farming to finfish farming without considering the additional environmental effects imposed. While fin fish farms involve the discharge of thousands of tonnes of fish food, no such impact occurs with mussel or oyster farming. This change in activity should be assessed like any other major change in activity through a resource consent process – it is like the Government removing discharge consent requirements from factory farms on land.
The government has bowed to pressure from economic interests in allowing offsets. This permits damage in one place on condition that it is “offset” elsewhere. It is a potentially dangerous provision because in reality it can often mean that one area or part of biodiversity can be wrecked in return for “protecting” an area that was never under threat anyway. The drafters of the Proposed NPS have provided Schedule 2 to the NPS that is designed to provide some tests and principles to limit the scope of such offsetting. That is welcome, and some of the principles are good.
The proposals noted by the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment ( 2010, p14) include a plant producing about 2 billion litres of diesel per year, using at least 12 million tonnes of lignite per year and another producing 3 billion litres using 12-17 million tonnes of lignite annually. A further project would produce by 2016 1.2 tonnes of the nitrogenous fertiliser, urea, using 2 million tonnes of lignite annually.
Documents obtained under the Official Information Act have revealed that DOC was intending to turn down Meridian (application to buils a damn on the Mohikinui River) and believed “the public conservation land within the Mokihinui River has such high value that it is most unlikely to be suitable for exchange at all.”
Forest & Bird ran a successful campaign to give New Zealanders the chance to urge Meridian Energy to withdraw its proposal.
One irony was that Meridian was a recent sponsor of Project Crimson but the Mokihinui project would have drowned the very rata forests it pledged to protect.
Maui’s dolphins still not safe from the threat of extinction.
A significant cost cutting exercise within the Environment portfolio helps explain why Budget 2012 has come and gone without a sighting of Minister Amy Adams, says Labour’s Environment spokesperson Grant Robertson.
“Environment has always been seen as the poor cousin by National, but in this budget it appears to have been kicked out of the family altogether. The Minister has not even bothered to issue a media statement to outline the details.
The Local Government and Environment Committee’s report back on the Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf (Environmental Effects) Bill is extremely disappointing and a lost opportunity to put in place a robust consenting regime for the EEZ and continental shelf, according to the Environmental Defence Society. . . . “The Bill also fails to comply with New Zealand’s international obligations under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea which includes an obligation on nations to ‘protect and preserve” the marine environment. This risks damage to New Zealand’s international reputation.
Greater Wellington Regional Council today released its state of the environment report. It highlights the poor quality of many urban, lowland and Wairarapa waterways, and some rivers and aquifers being at their allocation limit.
“The state of the region’s waterways especially in the Wairarapa shows that national environmental standards are urgently needed to set limits on intensive agriculture to protect our rivers, lakes and aquifers,” said Ms Sage.
“The Government has yet to commit to setting national standards for water quality despite these being recommended by the Land and Water Forum.
“The Government has weakened protection for wild rivers in Canterbury with the ECan Act and indications are that they are seeking to weaken river protection further.”
Today’s Environmental Protection Authority’s (EPA) decision to rubber stamp the Transmission Gully motorway project is a poor decision that will see over a billion dollars of tax payers’ money wasted,
In its response to Questions for Written Answer by Ms Delahunty, the Government admitted it is undertaking a $1.67 million survey of minerals on the West Coast of New Zealand, including within the Te Wahipounamu South West New Zealand world heritage area. Te Wahipounamu is one of 183 natural heritage properties which the World Heritage Committee considers as having outstanding universal value.
National Ltd™ secretly ordered that world heritage sites on the West Coast be surveyed as part of a $3 million mineral study spanning more than 16,000 square kilometres.
The Government’s aeromagnetic survey started in February last year and covered about 70 per cent of the West Coast, excluding national parks and high-value schedule 4 conservation land.
The aerial survey was publicly revealed yesterday as a result of parliamentary questions by Green party MP Catherine Delahunty.
The former interests of members appointed to the Establishment Board for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) make them unsuitable candidates for the job
Inexperienced managers, poor policy decisions and falling staff numbers are threatening New Zealand’s biosecurity, a group of quarantine inspectors claim.
The independent report into the outbreak of the PSA virus was commissioned by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) following the devastation caused by the virus in the Bay of Plenty orchards with an estimated cost of $400 million.
The report, released yesterday, found “shortcomings” in New Zealand’s biosecurity system although it could not say how the incursion had occurred
Prime Ministert John Key confirmed taxpayers would have to pick up the $80 million tab as a result of the cancelling of Emissions Trading Scheme provisions for business and farmers announced yesterday,
New Zealand Minister for the Environment Kate Wilkinson fobs off Save Fiordland protesters. Spokeswoman Daphne Taylor presented Ms Wilkinson with the Fiordland National Park Management Plan and the Conservation Management Strategy. “Just in case you haven’t read these,” Ms Taylor told her.
The process to grant consent for the Milford Dart tunnel and Fiordland Link Experience should never have started if the documents had been followed, Ms Taylor said.
A National Ltd™ appointed advisory group has recommended a significant rewrite of the Resource Management Act, removing references to the protection of coastal areas, wetlands, lakes and rivers and indigenous flora and fauna.
National Ltd™ Environment Minister Nick Smith gave $180,000 of taxpayer cash to fund meetings to resolve disputes between farmers and environmentalists clashing over projects in the Mackenzie Basin and Waitaki Valley.
The Mackenzie Sustainable Futures Trust was set up to help resolve the disputes.
Documents issued under the Official Information Act reveal senior environment ministry officials had serious concerns about the project, and declined an application for a $200,000 grant earlier this year. However, Dr Smith overuled the decision and the group got another $80,000.
More than half the cash went to environmental consultants – including about $88,000 to Ecologic, a firm run by Dr Smith’s friend Guy Salmon. Mr Salmon is also linked to the National Party ginger group the BlueGreens.
WHERE THE CASH WENT
Ecologic consultant Guy Salmon: $88,010 (includes $682 in restaurant and bar charges)
Whanganui-based consultant Richard Thompson: $13,130 (includes $149 in restaurant and bar bills)
Environment Defence Society: $2256
Restaurant and bar charges for meeting participants (at May, June and August meetings): $5495
Production of report and interim report: $30,800
John Key remains “relaxed”
A further weakening of the already gutted resource consent process is being considered for foreign-owned mining companies, according to Energy and Resources Minister. Phil; Heatley.
The public is being locked out of the consultation process on the alloting of areas being made available by the government for resource exploration.
National Ltd™ scraps government grants for solar water heating and Parliamentary Commissioner comes out against them:
National Ltd™ use the Navy along with police and Crown Law to bully environmental protesters in a legal case they knew could not be won:
National Ltd™ puts out an international call for foreign companies to drill for oil and gas in 23 blocks of deep and wild waters east of Wellington and Dunedin.
National Ltd™ consultants do a u-turn on the economic benefits of additional roading and then get handed a $200 million contract for further consultation work.
The Department of Conservation grants foreign-owned multinational mining company OceanaGold permission to destroy 55 hectares of beech forest so as to extend its Reefton mine to a total 81 hectares without public notification:
As National Ltd™ prepares to ease the resource consent process for mining companies, the Minerals Industry Association starts putting pressure on local authorities to step aside:
Economic commentator Gareth Morgan details National Ltd™’s ramshackle collection of underfunded agencies with no direction or policy for dealing with the vast marine resources of New Zealand:
A further erosion of New Zealand’s bio-security is highted when Christchurch Airport is found to have failed a survey:
Open letter to Minister for the Environment
Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment Dr Jan Wright says planned changes to the Emissions Trading Scheme will be a costly and environmentally damaging mistake.
The changes are part of the ETS amendment Bill currently before select committee. Dr Wright has submitted on the Bill this afternoon.
Dr Wright says she is particularly concerned with subsidies to polluters being locked in.
“Right now we’re subsidising ninety-five percent of big polluters’ emissions. That was due to be phased out, albeit too slowly, but the Bill will leave those subsidies in place indefinitely.
Proposed marine reserves off the West Coast have been drastically reduced in size so much so that one advocate says they are “an insult” to those who spent years trying to establish them.
New Zealand was one of only two countries to oppose further protection measures for Maui’s and Hector’s dolphins at the world’s largest conservation conference, it has been revealed.
The secret vote took place last week at the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s conference in Korea, where government officials and environmental groups met to outline environmental policy goals for the next four years.
Some 117 countries and 460 organisations voted for New Zealand to ban gill and trawl nets in waters up to 100 metres deep.
Emergy Minister Phil Heatley is caught out lying about the environmental impact of fraking.
Regional council are caught out not enforcing regulations, Government says no action is required
National Ltd™ ignores concerns about fracking which has seen the practise banned around the world
Forest & Bird says statements by Mr Joyce that opponents to the proposed Bathurst mine are “getting in the way of” potential jobs for the sacked Solid Energy workers are unfounded and mischievous.
A High Court decision says the effects on climate change cannot be considered under the Resource Management Act (RMA) as updated by National Ltd™. The Court decision came after an appeal was made against an earlier decision to allow Australian-owned mining company Bathurst Resources (also known as Buller Coal) to build a 200-hectare open-cast coal mine on the plateau and mine 80 million tonnes of coal that, when burnt, will release about 200 million tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
Fishing restrictions announced by the government will not halt the predicted slide of our nationally critical New Zealand sea lions to extinction within the next two decades
The Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf Bill, as reported back from select committee fails to protect New Zealand’s marine environment and ignores our international legal obligations.
More than half of monitored recreational sites on our rivers are unsafe for swimming, a report has revealed.
The Ministry for the Environment’s latest report card – issued weeks before summer weather sends Kiwis flocking to the water – has left opposition parties questioning New Zealand’s 100 per cent pure brand.
The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, Jan Wright, has accused a select committee reviewing the Emissions Trading Scheme of ignoring her and other evidence against its proposals. . . . “This is about having an Emissions Trading Scheme in place that is effective,” she says, “and we now have one in place that will have very, very limited effectiveness and has locked in subsidies to to the worst emitters indefinitely,” she says.
Environment Minister pulls out of participation in legal action to prevent more pollution being poured into New Zealand’s fresh water supplies.
National Ltd™ seeks changes to the law which will make it more dificult to get consent to build a deck onto a house than it is to drill for oil.
New Zealand continues to avoid its international obligations “to ensure the conservation and management of sharks and their long-term sustainable use” while its fishers carry on with the barbaric practise of shark finning.
Recent survey results show that two thirds of New Zealanders believer spending on environmental conservation is a good use of tax payers’ money. National Ltd™ responds with further cuts to the Department of Conservation budget.
Signatures from 30,000 people in a global email petition urging Prime Minister John Key to save the endangered Maui’s dolphin have been ignored, the World Wildlife Fund says.
The Government’s “lack of response” showed “a worrying disregard” for the species’ survival, WWF New Zealand chief executive Chris Howe said. Last month New Zealand was the only country to vote against more protection for the species at the world’s largest conservation summit.
Finance Minister Bill English begins the process of further gutting urban environmental protection legislation to speed up the building consent process for developers.
The Government is stopping the five-yearly State of the Environment report.
Put together by the Ministry of the Environment, the report is the largest stock-take of trends relating to land, water, air, plants and animals.
The next report was expected in December, but the Government has decided instead to look at the basic data for each area.
Well lets hope the policy wonks in the Labour party visit, read, and take notice of above litany of lies, and environmental sabotage.
But yeah Holy shit!
You say that like Labour cares . . . or maybe you’re suggesting the information can be used to give the impression that Labour cares?
Holy shit BLiP…..
The picture has been painted. Thank you for that collosal effort.
And if I might add a tiny bit on the end re the Central Plains Water theft scheme…
This government and their farmers in Canterbury were unable to get their schemes in place utilising the processes of democracy and existing business practices so they just cancelled democracy and stole it. This is the action of a despot.
The farmers were unable to get the free market to fund their grand scheme so they had to get loans from the local Council and their old lady ratepayers. Oh, and further funds from the taxpayers. More failure of their religion.
It is a bit like the NZX being unable to run a decent business and so turn to taxpayer-owned companies such as Meridian and Mighty River Power to beef them up. More failure of their religion.
It is a bit like the complete abandonment of the free market in the Christchurch rebuild. Oh, except for when it comes to the poorer suburbs in the east. More failure of their religion.
This government and its disciples are out of control.
That ECAN thing is mind boggling.
Cancelling elections because they think they know better than the electors. That’s their actual stated reasons.
Puts the lie to all their talk about ‘big government’ and all the rest of it. All they care about is cutting taxes and making sure money goes to the ‘right’ people.
In any other country shit would be being burnt down.
That’s exactly right p’s b. Two things gobsmack me…
1. The brazen cheek and gall of their theft and lies.
2. The relative lack of things being burned down. This is a perfect example of kiwi complacency.
Chris Trotter had a good article in the Press this morning on how leads are taken from those in authority. Small things that can spark catastrophe. He is right, and this government with its lies and thefts and lack of taking any responsibility sets a very dangerous precedent for the populace to follow.
Fuck authority. Fuck the police. Fuck John Key. We the people should not turn quietly away from this and hope it disappears…. in fact we have a duty to not so turn away. We owe it to our communities, past and present, and we owe it to our children and families, to our neighbours. We need to fucking wake up and start making some noise.
and then it got me to thinking. I have a view that the world is heading for war – you can smell it in the air.. this is a common view today. So is this sort of behaviour of the authorities softening / hardening the populace up for the tougher things to come? That is another story and involves a form of conspiracy. And we all know that humans do not conspire …. oh, hang on… ecan
Humans don’t conspire very well. It is a very rare conspiracy that is kept both totally secret and also turns out to be a complete success.
I’m not sure why you smell the brewing of a war. There doesn’t seem to be much apetite for overseas engagements even in places like the US.
Well gosman, for once I hope you’re right and I’m wrong. But I think the horse has already bolted. Let’s see who is fighting wars at the moment.
USA, UK, France, Italy, etc pretty much the entire Nato lot.
Pretty much all hte middle east, in some form or another.
New Zealand and Australia.
Much of North Africa.
Various in the former USSR.
Of course we, and probably most of the population of the western block, would not like to think we are at war. But we are.
So I guess the risk is not of war but of an increase in the scale of the current wars.
The Middle East and North Africa are not at war beyond places like Mali, Syria, Yemen, Turkey, and possibly Israel/Palestine, Libya and Yemen. Low level conflict exists in other places and there is potential for a some areas, (most notably Iran), to turn into conflicts but the vast majority of the region is realitively peaceful.
You seem to equate Western involvement in Afghanistan/Pakistan as if the countries are engaged in a massive war when the reality is that these nations are looking to wind down their involvement not ramp them up.
As for the former USSR it seems to be restricted to a low level conflict in certain areas of the Caucasus mountains rather than across the entire area. The fighting is much less than it has been in the past although I will grant you there is potential for it to flare up.
You seem to have forgotten East and South East Asia where there is also potential. However there has always been potential in this area and I see nothing to suggest it will escalate out of control any time soon.
ffs gosan, war is war. Just because it is not world war ii doesn’t negate the killings and dead people as a result of the “smaller” war.
you must be a very small man because all you ever do is dance on a pinhead.
i don’t rate your view on this one little bit.
No worries. My wee list has been an on-going task since 2009. I annoy various blog admins by posting it every chance I get, although its only the good ole Standard which consistently lets it through the mod filters which capture it because there are so many links. I’m happy to add any valid items to the list and ask only for links to reliable sources. I’ll be handing it over to the Greens once the next election date is announced. Thank you for your interest – and to everyone for their kind acknowledgement.
Thanks Blip that is one hell of a list there, well done. You might already have it in there somewhere but for me this case here epitomises the gleefull disregard the Nacts have for the environment (not to mention cronyism).
Thank you BLIP
What could be concerning is the stuff that is still hidden.
Labour’s endorsement of the National decision on the Ross Sea is notable.