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Daily review 06/04/2021

Written By: - Date published: 5:30 pm, April 6th, 2021 - 19 comments
Categories: Daily review - Tags:

Daily review is also your post.

This provides Standardistas the opportunity to review events of the day.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Don’t forget to be kind to each other …

19 comments on “Daily review 06/04/2021 ”

  1. Pat 1

    I suspect the Oz travel bubble will not be the panacea the tourism/hospitality industries hope it will be….it will make many separated families happy however.

  2. Treetop 2

    How long is it going to last before a community case is triggered in NZ from Australia?

    Not if but when and NZ will need to be prepared. I would have left the trans Tasman bubble until October after the winter and the vulnerable being vaccinated.

    • David 2.1

      All this continual scare mongering. There have been plenty of community cases in NZ with out a bubble. So what if there are community cases with a bubble? It is inevitable there will be cases. Just as its inevitable next Christmas holidays the MSM will be fixated on reporting shark sightings on the NZ coastline. They always have done and always will do.

      The bigger question is what is next? As has been asked so many times, whats the bigger plan?

      • Treetop 2.1.1

        NZ does containment better than Australia. There are a couple community cases in Queensland at present. I am not sure if other states have a shut border with Queensland.

        Aside from this, a call will get made when there is community transmission on either side. I prefer to use the term risk and not scare mongering.

      • Incognito 2.1.2

        I think the “bigger plan” depends on many things, some of which are unknown and unpredictable. For example, how many Kiwis and people overseas are going to be immunised? How effective are vaccines against existing and new variants of the virus? Will vaccines provide effective or sterilising immunity? Et cetera.

      • GreenBus 2.1.3

        A shark expert on Radio this morning confirmed 11 great whites are regularily in the Bowentown harbour area. This is big news if you like swimming in the sea. I certainly would appreciate any forewarning about these deadly creatures cruising around close to human recreational hotspots, which Waihi Beach/Bowentown is. On Jan 7th only 3 months ago a young woman was attacked and died from a shark attack in the same area although on the ocean beach and not the harbour, still only 5 mins for a shark to cover the distance. Time to stay out of the water, it's theirs not ours. I wouldn't say the media are fixated on sharks, they report only a fraction of the real number of close calls in reality. As an old surfer I've seen plenty close at hand as have many other surfers. The media don't even know.

  3. greywarshark 3

    Uh oh. https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/439872/toxic-waste-buried-at-tiwai-point-aluminium-smelter-former-staff-say

    Investigators are looking into claims highly toxic waste has been buried in unmapped sites at Tiwai Point aluminium smelter.

    This includes spent cell liner (SCL) waste that contains cyanide and toxic fluoride, and is banned from being buried untreated in both the US and Australia.

    The warning last October from the compliance section of the regional council Environment Southland is in documents released to RNZ under the OIA.

    "Former staff of the smelter report burying of spent cell linings or contaminated material in various parts of the Tiwai site," said the report into "key matters" for cleaning up the huge site next to conservation land once the smelter shuts in 2024.

    • Treetop 3.1

      How long will it take and what is the cost to clean up the toxic waste???

    • greywarshark 3.2

      Further inhttps://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/439872/toxic-waste-buried-at-tiwai-point-aluminium-smelter-former-staff-say

      …Waste burial reportedly went on "particularly prior" to the Resource Management Act's enactment in 1991, by which stage tens of thousands of tonnes of hazardous waste had already been produced….

      And – (New Zealand Aluminium Smelters has announced the appointment of a new chief executive and general manager,… (April 2018)

      Stewart Hamilton will take over the role at Tiwai Point, returning to the plant after beginning his career there as a research engineer in 1996.

      Hamilton has almost 20 years of experience in the aluminium industry, having attained the role of leading Pacific Aluminium's business improvement and technology area for Australia and New Zealand. https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/103008316/nzas-appoint-new-chief-executive-for-tiwai-point-smelter)

      Back to initial news item – But now its report lists two issues of "high concern": The SCL storage pad that it notes is "susceptible to coastal erosion"; and the leachate from the landfill getting into groundwater and Foveaux Strait.

      "Some groundwater monitoring bores on the south side of the landfill show some high levels of contamination for a number of contaminants including several nitrogen species and fluoride, and minor levels of heavy metals and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons," it said.

      The smelter company said it operated in compliance with all standards set under its resource consents as monitored by Environment Southland and "conducts a range of monitoring, often in excess of those required". It said it provided reports to Environment Southland every quarter….

      Hamilton said the smelter had operated at Tiwai Point for 50 years and during that time environmental monitoring regimes had evolved.

      The company acted immediately to remedy any past non-compliances and will close the smelter in a responsible manner, including removing all spent cell lining from the site, Hamilton said…

      It has stockpiled 180,000 tonnes of much more toxic spent cell liner waste, and has exported 58,000 tonnes of it, it said; however, production figures suggest a further 20,000 tonnes of SCL may have been created than accounted for in these figures, and RNZ has queried this with NZAS.

      The smelter was allowed to store up to 250,000 tonnes of SCL waste, the city council told RNZ.

      There was a 1991 Act introduced and things had to tighten up. In 50 years procedures can have been quite loose, at the beginning especially. But Hamilton has been with the company for some time – started in 1996, and likely to know how to manage difficulties.

  4. greywarshark 4

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/124469518/nzas-looks-to-export-toxic-waste-stockpiled-at-tiwai-point

    NZAS chief executive and site general manager Stew Hamilton said there was a total of 181,000 tonnes of spent cell liner, known as SCL, on site.

    Hamilton said 106,000 tonnes was stored on a purpose build concrete pad with a special drainage system to capture and treat any run-off and 75,000 tonnes are in purpose built, weatherproof buildings on site…

    SCL is the waste lining of cells used in the smelting process, which have been rebuilt. When stored correctly it is safe and does not release gases.

    A NZAS spokesperson said for SCL to release gas and become explosive, four things must occur simultaneously and none of them can occur at NZAS under the current storage conditions: it must become wet, it must be in an enclosed area which is not ventilated, there must be a source of ignition, and the gas levels must be within a concentration range which enables combustion. (Sounds a bit like what was said about Pike River Mine. 'Safe' if, if if.)

    SCL is often used in cement making, but there are no cement manufacturers in New Zealand able to take the material, he said.

    “As part of our detailed closure study we are exploring other options and in particular would hope to find a local end user. We don’t have all the answers right now, but we are working hard to ensure we deliver the best result in the end. ..

    “Around 58,000 tonnes has been exported over the past decade to end users overseas however as part of our closure study process we are exploring options to increase this rate.’’…

    Last month Ministry for the Environment said it was unclear whether Rio Tinto is under any legal obligation to remediate the site of its smelter at Tiwai Point after it closes in 2024.

    TT These are some main points from this news item which starts with a heading ‘NZAS looks to export toxic waste’ then it says that 58,000 tonnes were exported in a decade and that 106,000 tonnes is stored. They were looking at getting it used here in concrete but our systems can’t incorporate it. However it becomes unstable when its wet and presumably just mixing it in as a magic ingredient is not going to endear the company to the country – exploding buildings? They are exploring options now. But note the last sentence – unclear if under legal obligation to remediate. They do something with it in Australia I think perhaps we could swap it for a travel bubble to Oz? I feel cynical.

  5. Tricledrown 5

    Claims by tourist operators of a $1 billion windfall are ridiculous only very wealthy tourists with deep pockets will be able to take a risk of being stranded in NZ.

    It will take years before numbers come back to the levels pre c19 ,Then variants are another huge risk.On the positive side it could free up more MIQ rooms for people outside the bubble.

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