How far care for the Environment has fallen …

Written By: - Date published: 8:24 am, September 1st, 2013 - 41 comments
Categories: Conservation, Environment - Tags:

national-park

And now for something completely unrelated to the Labour Leadership Campaign.

I recently stumbled upon the Department of Conservation’s vision statement.  It is an appalling, poorly written and myopic document which shows how far concern for the environment has declined under this regime.

It is headed “Conservation for Prosperity”.  According to this Government the primary or maybe only reason for conservation is the creation of wealth.

The subheadings are that conservation builds health and wellbeing, and conservation builds wealth.  These disclose a totally human centric view of the environment.  It is there for our benefit.  It does not have intrinsic worth that should and needs to be protected.  It is not something that we should be in balance with but something that we should use to the greatest extent.

At one level this is not necessarily bad but when you couple the cutting to the funding of branches of Government that are meant to monitor the environmental health of the country you have to be worried.  We could be swept away on a feel good promise that we live in a country that is 100% natural while the environmental health degrades without us knowing about it.

The justification for conservation is said to be “investing in conservation is an investment in our prosperity”.  So we will be richer if we look after the place.  The Government obviously thinks that the only way to persuade people to do something is to appeal to their inner greed.

The Estate is also recognised for its contribution to our health and well being.  This is fine as far as it goes but again it shows a totally self centred view of the environment and conservation is only good because we can derive a benefit from it.

The benefit the environment has on addressing climate change is addressed, well sort of.  The statement says “[n]ative trees, tussocks and plants … soak up millions of tonnes of carbon every year, purifying the air we breathe.”  Why DOC could not explicitly say that the soaking up millions of tonnes of CO2 also counters the effects of climate change is beyond me.

Rivers are said to be important because they “turn the turbines of hydroelectricity stations, giving us the power we need for lighting, heating, cooking and running businesses”.  Apart from being sources of power DOC seems to struggle to understand what use or benefits are.  They should do a bit of reading in the area and understand how, for instance, the ability of salmon to swim up river directly contributes to the health of the great forests in the west of the United States.  There are many many examples of the complexity of the interactions that occur in nature that this document does not even hint at.

Fresh water is said to be important because we need it “to run all industries”.  Our need to drink the stuff is oddly not mentioned.

The statement concludes by saying that “[i]nvesting in conservation is an investment in our prosperity.”

There is no mention of stewardship or the intrinsic value of the environment.  The document clearly suggests that the environment is for us to use as we see fit.  It does not realise that we do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our grandchildren.

Having read this document I can now understand the mindset which thinks that there is nothing wrong in allowing the mining of our natural parks.  It is simply because they neither understand nor care about nature.

41 comments on “How far care for the Environment has fallen …”

  1. Sable 1

    Yes and who recently vetoed legislation to clean up NZ rivers from the Greens, that’s right National and Labour.

  2. hush minx 2

    Sounds like environment might be a good topic for leaders questions. Both Shane and Grant were spokespeople, and neither in my opinion, did the portfolio justice.

  3. tc 3

    Reminds me of ben eltons stark where things improved after the rich and powerful disappeared into their domes as all the polluting stopped.

    Our big issue is the average person thinks its fine as the beach they use or the ‘wildeness’ they experience looks fine to the naked eye and Its a hard sell when only 67% show up to vote ffs.

  4. Chooky 4

    @ Sable….disgraceful

    Hopefully with Cunliffe as Leader of the Labour Party…things will change( his wife is an environmental lawyer and should be a huge asset )…and he is a natural to partner with the Greens … Hopefully he will come out against the coastal motorway north of Wellington and make a stand on public transport etc…mining in National Parks /fracking…in his electioneering….as well as make a stand on cuts to beneficiaries etc ….He needs more fire in his belly on these things as he does the hustings!

    Labour’s record on environmental issues ( while not as RAPACIOUS as John Key and Nacts!)… has not been good… too anthropocentric ie focused on what the natural environment can do for humans…(plundering, money making and spoiling not excluded)….Rather, the natural environment should be regarded as an eco-centric force in its own right, with its own intrinsic worth ,values, wisdom….and rivers and National Parks a treasure to be caretaken and conserved ( Nga Kaitiaki)in their pristine state and in their own right….

    This is what DOC and the RMA should be for…not a business entity in partnership with greedy plundering individuals and Corporates

  5. vto 5

    Cut all the kauri

    Slaughter all the seals

    Take all the whales

    Shit in all the rivers

    People who vote National and support this kind of utter bullshit are disgusting egocentric human beings.

    This government is an extremist one and it will require a vote in extreme to the other end to balance it up and reverse all these madcap brainless waves.

    What a bunch of dopes.

    • Bob 5.1

      What a stupid comment (hardly surprising).

      The only Kauri that have been cut down are suffering from a virus that is threatening all Kauri.

      No seals being slaughtered

      National have been publicly opposed to Japan’s whaling practises.

      Rivers are overall in better condition now than when National took office (they are still in a shit state, but it’s a start)

      If the government was extremist, they would have allowed the tunnel in Fiordland to go ahead without batting an eyelid!

      • vto 5.1.1

        Maybe think a little more Bob. The reference to kauri, whales and seals was to illustrate that the colonial approach to resources is still alive and well (though clearly two centuries old), as is shown by this government’s approach to wild areas i.e. they are a resource to be eaten.

        It is about the attitude Bob, the attitude, the wide long term vision, the approach to the wild. This government thinks it has just got off a boat in Auckland back in 1860 ffs.

  6. grumpy 6

    To me, the worst thing about this report (and it’s even worse Canterbury one), is the appalling writing. The latest buzzword in DoC seems to be over use of “The Place” to describe every location the writer(s) want to mention. Those sick of failed MBA type Orwellian Bizspeak have another nightmare just beginning.

  7. hush minx 7

    I also liked this from rod oram today:

    Minister for the Environment Amy Adams made some remarkable assertions about her Resource Management Act reforms in her commentary piece in these pages last week.

    For example, she wrote: “I am also proposing to repeal a requirement to have regard to the maintenance and enhancement of the quality of the environment – not because it is unimportant but because this is what the very purpose of the act is about. Simply restating it in the principles section is not helpful.”

    Actually, the principles section is the absolute key to any act. It gives courts and practitioners clear guidance on Parliament’s intentions for the act.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/opinion-analysis/9107225/Rod-Oram-Time-for-economic-leadership

    • beGone Craven SpyBill leopard 7.1

      Am truly shocked about Amy Adams statement in that article.

      This can be viewed as nothing other than active deception of the public.

  8. RedBaron CV 8

    It’s a lousy corporate statement but a lot of DoC are probably trying to mollify their current bosses so they aren’t totally annihilated-so they live to fight another day. Could you imagine this legislation with no government department and management contracted out? Much though I don’t like an ice cream stand at Hotwater beach it can be easily removed and may be a very small price for the enviroment to pay.

  9. Macro 9

    National are supposedly a Party based upon conservative principles……
    The Key mob have no conception whatsoever of what conservation might be; or any desire to find out. For them all that matters is the almighty dollar, and the bigger their wallet the better. They are spending their descendants inheritance as fast as they can with no consideration whatsoever for future generations of NZers. And for what purpose? So that they can die wealthy! Their incomprehensible greed is simply staggering.

    The sooner this shower is kicked off the treasury benches and down Molesworth Street the better.

  10. BLiP 10

    Only under a John Key led National Ltd government will you have a Minister for the Environment publicly state:

    . . . I am also proposing to repeal a requirement to have regard to the maintenance and enhancement of the quality of the environment – not because it is unimportant but because this is what the very purpose of the act is about. Simply restating it in the principles section is not helpful . . .

    As Rod Oram points out, this is just bullshit, 100% pure bullshit.

    EDIT: Note to self, read *all* the comments before posting. SNAP: hush minx

    • beGone Craven Spy Bill leopard 10.1

      +1 Blip,

      It is SUCH bullshit, it is perfectly appropriate and good for its denouncement to be repeated as many times as it can be. 🙂

      • Greywarbler 10.1.1

        What a load of hogwash. Why would time be wasted changing something because it was a repetition of something. If it doesn’t cost that its said twice, and it doesn’t cause change, then
        why spend time and money unnecessarily?

        And looking after the environment is a duty not a goal with moveable posts.

  11. Peter 11

    This isn’t exactly “new” news. DOC have had a mantra of Conservation For Prosperity for some time now.

  12. BLiP 12

    The OP headline carries the assumption that National Ltd™ ever cared about the environment. Since its election in 2008, the John Key led National Ltd™ led government 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

    cancelled 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 by Order in Council

    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 Fortescue 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

    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”

    rubished the Department of Conservation (“Canterbury Farming” June 2010 issue – now offline) 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

    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 Auckland rail network up in the air without promised funding commitments and then came through with a dodgy loan scheme and then unilaterally reorganised the local government structure before finally setting about the privatisation-by-stealth model when busting KiwiRail

    removed the programme to make Government Departments ‘carbon neutral’ and also began its first wave of public sector redundancies starting with the Ministry for the Environment which was responsible for the scheme

    removed funding for public tv advertising on sustainability and energy efficiency

    pulled funding for small-town public litter bin recycling schemes

    displayed cabinet ministers expressing public support the bulldozing of Fiordland

    reduced Department of Conservation funding by $54 million over three years

    cancelled 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 (since completely fucked it up with the SuperShitty)

    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 “despicable” criminals, traitors, and robbers

    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

    gave 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

    took 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 $1.69 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

    been 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 and found by the supreme court to be a dodgy employer – 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

    been subjected to international condemnation for knowing next to nothing about the parlous state of the New Zealand fisheries

    bucked international trends and poured more acid on the 100% Pure brand and increases the bluefin tuna quota

    squirmed when New Zealand is subject to international criticism for its backing of commericial whaling which National Ltd supports

    funded 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.

    pressed on with PR bullshit about how 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

    created random fantasies of abundant wealth to promote all forms of mining

    ignored reports on sustained non-compliance with resource consents and worsening pollution of water ways.

    ignored its own Ministers possible conflicts of interest

    done nothing as both its own SOE Meridian and the Department of Conservation to withdraw appeals against an 85m high damn with a 14km long reservoir on conservation land.

    granted Energy Resources permission to ship Australian yellowcake uranium ore through New Zealand.

    apologised but does nothing else for breaching the Treaty of Waitangi by granting a mining exploration permit to Brazilian company Petrobras

    continued to remove environmental protection powers from local authorities

    totally reversed gains made in the protection of National Parks and other high-value conservation areas in the South Island.

    commenced a divide-and-rule strategy by attempting to paint New Zealanders interested in protecting the environment as outside of the “mainstream” and in defence of the fact that the media is catching to its bare-faced lies in the lead up to the 2008 election

    carried on with more lies by talking about modern mining like that at Reefton being carried out by Oceana Golds as being like “key hole surgery”

    appeared to believe that the tourists it is attempting to bring to New Zealand are all blind and won’t see for themselves the impact of the dairy farming it is subsidising to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars

    appeared itself to be blind when it comes to the Chairman of Fonterra

    forced the Commissioner for the Environment to delay the release of a report into the ramifications for climate change in regard to lignite mining and proposals to convert the lignite into diesel

    employed financial sleight of hand in shuffling funds towards business interests and away from community groups looking to protect the environment

    made more empty promises when a report showing that a third of New Zealand lankes have poor quality water is released

    backed down on promises to protect New Zealand children (and the environment cleaner by more informed disposal) from harmful chemicals by improving labeling and imposing mandatory standards on containers

    Ignored the findings by attacking the messenger when a World Health Organisation report confirms that 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.

    studiously ignored so as to take piss about dire warnings concerning the quality of drinking water in Reidstone

    failed to mention in its 100% Pure promotions that visitors to the Kerikeri Basin near the Stone Store – one of Northland’s iconic tourism and heritage sites – could come face-to-face with warning signs telling them the water is polluted

    failed to mention in its 100% Pure promotions that tourists in the Coromandel could come face to face with New Zealand’s environmental standards when finding hundreds of dead snapper washed up on Beaches

    presented bogus evidence concerning air pollution

    made more empty promises in relation to air pollution while also extending deadlines for local councils to reduce air pollution

    extended deadlines for businesses previously require to reduce air pollution by 2013

    put tourism operators in Akaroa at risk by refusing to make the harbour a marine reserve . . . and then rubs salt into their wounds

    done nothing after the United Nations finds that National Ltd™’s targets for reducing pollution are not consistent with the measures put in place to achieve those targets

    attempted to defend the Emissions Trading Scheme from comparisons with the Australian model while Environment Minister Nick Smith indicates there’s little chance of the two schemes being integrated any time soon

    then further slowed down the implentation of New Zealand’s Emissions Trading Scheme

    allowed major retailers to reap the benefits of its earlier and secret decision to abandon the mandatory labelling of exotic woods after it is found that the retailers are contributing to the death of native Australian forests despite an independent, year-long investigation which finds otherwise

    tried to keep a meeting between John Key and mininng company Anadarko’s boss secret. The company is responsble for a massive oil spill and is looking to to start drilling off New Zealand soon

    continued to ignore yet more evidence of farmers failing to comply with environmental regulations

    handed over $400 million to farmers to extend water storage and allow for more land to be used for dairy farms. No mention or provision is made for additional protections required to deal with the increased pollution

    failed to point out in its 100% Pure promotion that tourists (and locals) should avoid the Opihi River along State Highway 1 because of the risk of exposure to toxins from phormidium

    failed to point out in its 100% Pure promotions that tourists arriving at New Zealand’s “nuclear free” sea ports will be sharing the environment with up to 5,000 tonnes of radioactive yellow cake uranium

    lied about how bad the RMA is

    ignored top scientists and academics who point out that its underfunding of the Department of Conservation will send more species into extinction and hurt its 100% Pure image.

    Ignored John Key making an international arse out of himself in regard to New Zealand’s 100% Pure image

    carried on with its lies as New Zealand is identified as jeoparising its good name by allowing us to become one of a small number of states stalling progress in forming an international climate agreement
    kept stringing us along even after Next thing, New Zealand received the 2nd place Fossil Award 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.”

    stood silent when Fonterra was caught out lying by overstating its farmer’s compliance on excluding stock from waterways by 100%

    put World class surfing waves and Maui’s dolphin’s at Raglan at severe risk by encouraging a proposed iron ore seabed mining in New Zealand’s coastal waters

    never followed up after the scientific models created by New Zealand and the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) to allow fishing are called into question

    set the scene for our children heading 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

    ignored data which shows the expansion of fish-farming in the Marlborough Sounds could cause unacceptable changes in the coastal environment

    strategically removed the word “environment” from the lexicon of local and central government

    failed to tell the tourists it hopes to attact with its 100% Pure campaign that 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

    failed to tell the tourists it hopes to attract with its 100% Pure campaign that more than a third of Auckland’s beaches fail water quality checks and are closed for swimming

    ignored the closing of the beaches, this time as extremely high concentrations of the bacteria enterococci are identified
    ignored Ministerial conflicts of interest, this time involving John Key who is identified as shareholder in the Bank Of America which is backing mining in New Zealand and Australia . . . even when more information is made available . . . and more information . . . and more information

    pressed on with additional policies that move away from the protection of the environment towards exploitation

    limited , as part of its effort to cash-in on the environment, access to some of New Zealand’s most endangered species and isolated islands only to those who those who contribute financially displacing conservation staff and scientists

    ignored a World Wildlife Fund report, Beyond Rio, which makes clear New Zealand now risks some of the highest rates of biodiversity loss on Earth unless urgent action is taken

    continued to give confidence to Fonterra director Colin Armer being convicted and fined $72,000 for “fouling” a Bay of Plenty waterway after a judge found he could have prevented the pollution were it not for his “systemic” failure to monitor what was happening on his company’s farm

    lied when it said New Zealand has the environmental laws and regulations to control oil and gas development on the continental shelf because there is no equivalent of the Resource Management Act to control oil and gas activity outside of the territorial sea (12 nautical miles offshore).
    lied when it had already agreed coastal plans to 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

    placed short-term business interests ahead of long-term consequences to New Zealand’s environment, particularly biodiversity by allowing damage in one area on the condition that it be “off set” in another creating a dangerous precedent in that such a provisin means that one part of biodiversity can be wrecked in return for “protecting” an area that was never under threat anyway.

    promoted proposals that include 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

    tried to hide the fact that its Department of Conservation was ordered to permit Meridian to to build a damn on the Mohikinui River despite its position that “the public conservation land within the Mokihinui River has such high value that it is most unlikely to be suitable for exchange at all

    continued to ignore the slow-motion extinction of Maui’s dolphins:

    gone into hiding after it was discovered that significant cuts to the Ministry for the Environment in the 2012 Budget are not publicly detailed or announced

    continued to ignore its international obligations under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea to “protect and preserve” the martime environment

    refused in the face of repeated calls to set national standards for water quality despite mounting evidence of the need to do so

    further weakened protection for wild rivers in Canterbury with the ECan Act and indicates that further weakening provisions will follow.

    rubber stamped a motorway project with no economic benefit and likely to waste over $1 billion of tax payers’ funds.

    been forced to admit that it has spent $1.67 million in a 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

    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 survey was only puiblicy revealed after Green MP Catherine Delahunty asked for details in a parliamentary question

    appointed thoroughtly unsuitable but politically useful members to the Establishment Board for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

    facilitated by neglect the employment of inexperienced managers, making poor policy decisions resulting in additional threats to New Zealand’s biosecurity.

    under resourced New Zealand’s biosecurity system to such an extent that it is fundamentally flawed preventing any way of identifying how the Kiwifruit killer virus got into New Zealand and, thus, no way of preventing it from happening again.

    handed over a further $80 million to business and farmers to subsidise their pollution.

    ignored its own guidelines to provide consent the Milford Dart tunnel and Fiordland Link Experience which would otherwise never have been granted.

    appointed an advisory group to recommend a significant rewrite of the Resource Management Act to remove references to the protection of coastal areas, wetlands, lakes and rivers and indigenous flora and fauna.

    splashed tax payer cash around its consultants considering conservation and environmental protection of the Mackenze Basin and Waitaki Valley

    further weakened the resource consent process for foreign-owned mining companies,

    locked New Zealanders out of the consultation process on the alloting of areas being made available for resource exploration.

    ignored the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment and scrapped government grants for solar water heating

    used the Navy along with police and Crown Law to bully environmental protesters in a legal case they knew could not be won

    put 23 massive blocks of deep and wild waters east of Wellington and Dunedin on the international market for exploratory oil drilling

    allowed its own consultants do a u-turn on the economic benefits of additional roading and then handed them a $200 million contract for further consultation work

    Supported the Department of Conservation into granting 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

    envouraged the Minerals Industry Association to bully local authorities to step aside from what little environmental protections they are able to impose

    reduced its environment agencies to little more than a ramshackle collection of underfunded and ineffective small back offices with no direction or policy for dealing with the vast marine resources of New Zealand

    eroded New Zealand’s bio-security to such an extent that Christchurch Airport is found to have failed at a basic level

    removed the directive terms “protect”, “preserve”, “maintain” and “enhance” from the RMA fundamentally weakening the legislation and deliberately introducing confusion as to its overall intent.

    futher ensured that New Zealand tax payers continue to subsidise 95% of big polluters’ emissions

    drastically reduced the size of proposed marine reserves off the West Coast so much so that one advocate says they are “an insult” to those who spent years trying to establish them

    instructed its delegates at the world’s largest conservation conference , the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s conference in Korea, to oppose any further measures to protect Maui and Hector dolphins in defiance of 117 other countries and 460 environmental organisations requesting New Zealand ban gill and trawl nets in waters up to 100 metres deep

    lied about the environmental impact of fraking

    refused to enforce its own legislation to protect the environment

    ignored concerns about fracking which has seen the practise banned around the world

    twisted the knife by exploiting news of redundancies at Solid Energy in a statement which claims opponents to a proposed mine are “getting in the way of” potential jobs as part of an effort to discourage legal action

    changed to law allowing a consideration of the effects on climate change 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 excavate 80 million tonnes of coal that, when burnt, will release about 200 million tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere

    further ensured the extinction of New Zealand sea lions by failing to extend necessary fishing restrictions

    failed to protect the New Zealand marine environment and ignored international obligation with its Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf Act oil drilling legislation

    continued to obfuscate and dither while More than half of monitored recreational sites on our rivers are declared unsafe for swimming

    ignored its own scientific evidence and advice from its own authorities to lock-in tax payer funding of business which pollutes New Zealand’s air

    refused to enforce its own laws in respect to water pollution

    changed the law to make it more difficult to build a deck on a house than it is to drill for oil

    avoided 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.

    ignored public support for conservation by ordering another round of cuts to the Department of Conservation.

    stood alone at the world’s largest conservation summit and voted against more protection for species at risk

    further gutted environmental protection legislation to speed up the building consent process for developers

    vancelled without notice 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

    abandoned the Kyoto agreement completely

    allowed its on lobbyist to publicly attack a prominent New Zealand scientist for speaking truth about New Zealand’s environment in an effort to silence the accurate reporting of scientific evidence

    attracted international mockery for the fact that the pristine landscape featured in The Hobbit and used as the basis for the 100% Pure New Zealand campaign as fantastical as dragons and wizards

    remained “relaxed” about the fact that New Zealand is now the 18th worst out of 189 nations when it came to preserving its natural environment

    pulled out of Kyoto just weeks after the OECD reports that 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

    laughed when New Zealand received two “Fossil of the Day” – first-equal and second place – awards on the first day of international climate talks in Doha, Qatar

    used Hobbiton – Waikato – as the centrepiece of its 100% Pure campaign when the area is the country’s major source of pollution to the Hauraki Gulf

    handed over responsibility for the monitoring and reporting of fraking activity , for which it has inadequate legal protections, to the foreign-owned multi-nationals which are carrying out that activity thus totally ignoring its own Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment

    lied, obfuscated and used government resources to attack and undermined local authority plans to improve water quality
    sanctioned an unnamed foreign-owned multinational to go ahead with a major road through pristine South Island National Parks

    employed disingenuous gobbledeegook to defend its decision to withdraw from the Kyoto Agreement.

    turned a deaf ear to calls for New Zealand to assist pacfic island nations by taking a stronger position on climate change

    displayed contempt for existing agreements and Environment Case law by approving new salmon farms in recreational areas within the Marlborough Sounds

    refused to investigate the impact on increasing use of neonicotinoid pesticides which is likely to be a major contributor to the sudden and dramatic decline (aka colony collapse disorder) of the New Zealand honey bee population, National Ltd™ also refused to consider the development of a strategy to protect what is left of the honey bee population.

    lied about its commitment to addressing climate change

    failed to monitor Sanford Ltd’s pollution resulting in an international embarrassment

    allowed foreign-owned multinationals to proceed with oil exploration without the financial resources available to mitigate any environmental damage should it occur

    been caught out ignoring its own advice on implementing environmental monitoring procedures

    used changes to the Resource Management Act to remove local authorty’s rights and planning for the protection of trees

    commenced removing local authority’s rights to plan for housing

    allowed more than 53 percent of Canterbury’s major water users to avoid having meters installed

    mixed the cooperative model of climate change negotiations with the competitive model used in trade negotiations, thus putting outcomes in both areas a risk

    ducked questions asking for evidence as to the safety of genetically engineered food

    ignored the fact that New Zealand carbon credits are no longer the unit of choice in the New Zealand’s own carbon market. Figures from the official Emission Unit Registry show that emitters who initially supported NZUs are now using a range of international units to meet their carbon obligations under the Emissions Trading Scheme

    used highly dodgy figures in calculating the reduction New Zealand’s net carbon emissions by including trees due to be harvested in the next few years

    ignored news that New Zealand’s first glyphosate resistant weed has been found and the resulting call for the use of glyphosate (Monsanto’s “Roundup”) to cease

    stayed silent for five months after being advised that Fonterra’s milk product were contaminated with dicyandiamide (DCD) and now face an international backlash.

    set no maximum level of contamination of dicyandiamide (DCD) (AKA cyanoguanidine) in milk products for consumption by New Zealanders, stood silent while the farming industry says the withdrawal of dicyandiamide (DCD) will result in yet more pollution of New Zealand’s waterways

    stood silent as NIWA announced findings of research which showed 20 per cent of marine life in the Milford Sounds port area could be killed off as a result of copper leaching from anti-fouling paints on boat hulls

    secretly without consultation and any right of appeal used a short-term draconian law to ammend a water conservation order for the Rakaia River

    been locked out of the international carbon market because of its trucculent attitude

    continued in its efforts to eliminate tree protection of any kind in Auckland and elsewhere

    stood alone as the only developed country not to have tabled an unconditional single number target as part of the international climate change negotiations

    cut funding into research about protecting the last remaining giant kauri

    continued to endanger the 100% Pure brand

    been unable to explain how genetically engineered mould escaped from Massey University laboratories and remains unable or unwilling to provide further information

    introduced foreign species without a consideration of the risk to human health

    allowed oil companies to ignore breaches of resource consent and set neihhbours against neighbours

    obfuscated on the negative economic benefits of major raod works

    obfuscated on the level of cuts to the Department of Conservation

    disengaged the previously widely held concept of environmental protection from any consideration of economic development

    sacked 140 staff at the Department of Conservation

    inserted last minute changes to environmental legislation that were not announced and, thus, not considered during public submissions and earlier readings of Bills.

    lied about the practise of fracking going on in New Zealand for the past 30 years

    funded its Economic Development Ministry’s membership of the Coal Association lobby group

    staged a consultation process on the restructuring for the Department of Conservation and then completely ignored any submissions generated

    proposed handing over recreational paua gathering areas to commercial operators

    opened a further 190,000 square kilometers of New Zealand’s coastal waters for oil exploration

    allowed the Minister of Energy’s own political adviser to make public calls for the boycotting of the environmental iniative Earth House

    held secret meetings with oil company executives known international as irresponsible and mendacious

    exposed Auckland beaches to the unmonitored risk of oil exploration by companies unable to afford any clean up operations if required

    breached international law and used parliamentary urgency and ignored international guidelines to rush through legislation depriving New Zealanders of the right to protest against drilling for oil within 350 miles if New Zealand coast

    given permission for oil drilling to take place over earthquake ridden continental plate fault lines just off shore from Wellington

    stood idle while water quality used by households continyes to worsen

    ensured that the MacKenzie Basin is turned from a conservation estate into a development area

    used parliamentary urgency to avoid public notification, consultation and/or consideration of a law allowing companies with no experience nor financial resources to drill for oil on earthquake-ridden fault lines lying in New Zealand coastal waters

    here would be significant and irreversible adverse effects on the conservation values and overall ecological integrity of the application area and the Denniston Plateau should the proposed activity be approved”?

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA0903/S00452.htm <— back up on Chris Bishop

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10869801 <— irony much

    It is disgusting that if you are a sportsperson you get no conviction for an offence that endangered peoples lives because it might affect their ability to play overseas, but an actress convicted for taking part in an environmental protest gets no such consideration.

    . . . but wait, there's more I haven't written up properly yet . . .

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1306/S00244/savage-attack-on-bee-health.htm

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1306/S00240/positive-changes-to-fishing-regulations-announced.htm

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1306/S00219/report-highlights-risk-of-governments-mining-agenda.htm

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10892481

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/pollution/news/article.cfm?c_id=281&objectid=10884397

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10892985

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/AK1306/S00647/new-zealand-waste-policies-stuck-in-the-past.htm

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1306/S00309/environment-commissioner-releases-water-report-update.htm

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1307/S00024/iwc-says-govt-must-act-for-survival-of-mauis-dolphins.htm

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10895428

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10904557

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/planet-oz/2013/jul/29/hobbit-new-zealand-lord-of-the-rings-middle-earth-oil-gas-drilling

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/08/06/us-newzealand-milk-image-idUSBRE97503H20130806

    http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/xinhua/2013-08-05/content_9769307.html

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10910158

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10913041

    http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/nz-commits-2020-climate-change-target-5534697

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1308/S00273/national-admits-defeat-on-climate-change.htm

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1308/S00257/gutted-emissions-trading-scheme-damaging-forestry.htm

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1308/S00219/public-silenced-on-oil-well-consents.htm

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1308/S00179/rma-changes-risk-further-damage-to-nzs-reputation.htm

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1308/S00177/key-stacks-deck-plays-cute-with-rma.htm

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1308/S00172/government-welcomes-king-salmon-decision.htm

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1308/S00154/minister-must-shoulder-the-blame-for-mpis-mistakes.htm

    http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/planned-oil-exploration-outrages-kaikoura-residents-5535929

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1308/S00287/more-deforestation-following-ets-changes.htm

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11115218

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/9099326/Nats-plan-to-remove-right-to-oppose-drilling

    http://www.3news.co.nz/Residents-against-proposed-Fonterra-mine/tabid/423/articleID/311296/Default.aspx

    http://www.mfe.govt.nz/website/closed-sites/bioethics.html

    http://www.indymedia.org.nz/articles/1255

  13. Greywarbler 13

    +1 Hate that these lists can be compiled. The events should never have happened. Love the grunt put in to amass them. Thanks BLiP

  14. andyS 14

    How does soaking up carbon (sic) purify the air we breathe?
    I was under the impression that CO2 was a trace gas essential for life.

    • BLiP 14.1

      Ahhh, yes . . . Item 41 on the list of standard lies told about climate change. Here, learn something, if you can:

      Although it has some very important and beneficial effects, CO2 meets the legal and encyclopedic definitions of a “pollutant”, and human CO2 emissions pose a threat to public health and welfare.

      • lprent 14.1.1

        I don’t think that AndyS can. I’ve read his inane comments at hot topic.

        He has about the same amount of knowledge of climate (or indeed any science) as a flatulent bovine. All he ever does is to chew his cud and extrude bad smells as he lifts his tail for the same old crap. He has a repetitive and unthinking life.

        • Macro 14.1.1.1

          He’s been banned from there, thanks Gareth! But I see he snuck one in the other day…
          Obviously feeling lonely over at Climate “Science”.

          • andyS 14.1.1.1.1

            My question was really about the language used in the DoC paper.
            We may have our views on the radiative forcing of CO2 and its effects on the climatic system, but the DoC statement was that reducing “carbon” was somehow “purifying” the air.

            If we are referring to black carbon (i.e soot) then this is a reasonable statement, but removing CO2 is hardly purifying the air as CO2 is a natural component of air.

            If I took the logical conclusion of making air completey “pure” i.e CO2 free, then life on planet earth would cease to exist

            I suspect that this DoC paper was written by a junior or someone whose brain had been addled by over-exposure to Gore-esque twaddle, or who had worked as a Greenpeace office worker

  15. andyS 15

    I suggest you stop breathing then, since you release about 1kg of this pollutant from your breath every day.

    That would certainly help purify our air,

  16. andyS 16

    I am interested in the concept of 100% natural. Since there are no indigenous land based mammals in NZ, it is fair to say that we are a long way from 100% natural. Perhaps if we exterminated all mammals then we could achieve that goal?

  17. Macro 17

    “Since there are no indigenous land based mammals in NZ,”

    You obviously know as much about NZ’s flora and fauna as you do about Global Warming!

    http://www.doc.govt.nz/conservation/native-animals/bats/

  18. andyS 18

    I do know about the bats, I was just about to write land based non flying mammals but thought better of it.
    Presumably if we removed all the land based non flying mammals then we wouldn’t need the useless wind turbines that explode bats stomachs.
    It would be good for our clean green image too.

  19. andyS 19

    I love climate cretins, I really do.

  20. andyS 20

    Cut and paste troll Blip links to SkS but doesn’t explain which bit of the scriptures I have violated.

    • BLiP 20.1

      Heh! It guess “Item 41” was too subtle for AndyShit4brains.

      • andyS 20.1.1

        Presumably, you agree that CO2 is a “pollutant” and that by removing all of it from the atmosphere, we will make the world a better place.

        Or perhaps you think there is an optimum level in the atmosphere for this pollutant, and if so what it is?

        Furthermore, do you have any scientific evidence that there is an optimum level in the atmosphere for CO2?

        As someone whose cerebellum is made from faecal matter, as you claim, you will have to explain this quite carefully to me.

        • lprent 20.1.1.1

          As I commented earlier, you really are a bit of a scientific moron. Learning to phrase questions so they have some meaning would be useful.

          There is no “optimum” level unless you say what it is optimal for. Earth has been close to 90% CO2 in the atmosphere in earth one (prior to the moon’s creation) and as probably as low as about 50ppm during periods of minimal atmospheric venting vulcanisation (little or no land). Both of these events happened in the pre-cambrian over a billion years ago. However in neither of these cases would you be able to survive without considerable technical support. One would suffocate you, and in the other case you’d die because your body would forget to breathe (CO2 levels are the breathing trigger for most larger animals). Perhaps you should indicate if you’d find these conditions “optimal”.

          Humans can tolerate quite a range of CO2 levels. There has been considerable variation during our evolutionary history. Hunter gathers seem to survive fine when CO2 drops below 200ppm during glacials and when it peaks at about the current levels in full interglacials. However while you may prefer scratching, picking and eating your own fleas, it isn’t high on my list of things to do.

          However what is of interest to civilised people (not you, we’ll add you to the dumbarse parasite list) is at what level does our current human civilisation become unviable. Since our civikisation is based on growing food, In the last 10k years while we have developed and become dependent on agriculture, we have had atmospheric CO2 levels of no less than 200ppm and no more than 300ppm. Currently we are at about 400ppm which will over the next hundred years cause severe climate shifts, and progressively get more extreme after that for the following few thousand years. This has consequences for our agricultural systems, which aren’t geared for either rapid climate shifts or increased severity of weather….

          So some time over the coming decades we’re going to have to develop agricultural methods that we have no current knowledge of to cope with continuing to produce enough food for the worlds human population. If we don’t then we’re likely to see a considerable human dieback – probably with a little bit of warfare on the side..

          Now perhaps you’d care to explain why your preferred state of primitively scratching fleas after a human dieback because of your inability to use your brains should be followed by all. Tell me what do you consider is the “optimal” level and I may be able to assist you with determining how far you are likely to fall… But for your monkey-god’s sake, please be a bit more precise about what you define as your “optimal” state of savagery.

          • andyS 20.1.1.1.1

            Tell me what do you consider is the “optimal” level

            There isn’t an optimal level, as you just said
            However, DoC seem to think that by removing CO2 from air, we are purifying it. So presumably they think the optimal level is less than the current level. Given that DoC are a taxpayer funded body, I thought they might be able to offer some insight, so I will contact them directly

            not you, we’ll add you to the dumbarse parasite list

            Thanks. As it happens, I work for myself, and get all my income from the UK, so I don’t consider myself to be a parasite. I am not sure what you consider a parasite, presumably self-employed IT workers like me are “parasites” whilst talentless list MPs are not

            However, your abusive remark is much appreciated. I always appreciate abuse from the “voice of the labour movement”. It reminds me what a bunch of bottom-feeders the “labour movement” really is and how mistaken I was that day I voted for them a long time ago

            Have a nice day

  21. andyS 21

    Paul says ” I am trying to derail debate”

    What debate? This is a left wing blog. There is never any debate.

  22. lorraine 22

    The Keyism has so many similarities to Muldonism. The dictatorial government are again trying to tell our elected council that they decide on GM crops being planted in our region and if things go belly up then of course the ratepayers will pick up the bill. Also they are more interested in pandering to the likes of big multinationals than caring about the effects on New Zealanders.
    Like everything else this government does it is all for big business at the expense of the average Kiwi. God I hope enough people see sense next election and vote the fascists out. It is certainly not government for the people by the people. Like the asset sales this government sees a quick benefit to them and their big business cronies by selling out our country to wealthy foreign companies.

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