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How To Get There 24/2/19

Written By: - Date published: 6:57 am, February 24th, 2019 - 25 comments
Categories: Deep stuff - Tags:


This post is a place for positive discussion of the future.

An Open Mike for ideas, solutions and the discussion of the possible.

The Big Picture, rather than a snapshot of the day’s goings on. Topics rather than topical.

We’d like to think it’s success will be measured in the quality of comments rather than the quantity.

So have at it!

Let us know what you think …

25 comments on “How To Get There 24/2/19 ”

  1. Robert Guyton 1

    Good morning all. It’s unusually cold in Riverton this morning and with peaches not yet ripened and grapes still green in the bunch, a person might worry that summer’s gone, but not me 🙂
    It’ll swing back to hot again soon, I’m sure. Presently, we’ve a Frenchman staying and helping around the forest garden; he helped me demolish the walking bridge that crosses the kokopu stream yesterday, as well as cultivating the soil in the big tunnelhouse in preparation for sowing wildflowers; this huge tunnel will be the dining room for guests at the up-coming permaculture hui and we’ve chosen a floral theme. Two Italian’s arrived last night; they too are keen to help with preparations and being carpenters, they’ll rebuild the bridge and construct some funky structures for the showers and compost toilets. All seem very fine people. The Frenchman sailed to New Zealand in a ketch. All have travelled extensively; South America especially. The two Italian’s have just been at the Luminate festival in Takaka and have interesting stories about being there, and good ideas about managing events. The Frenchman plays the clarinet, the Italian’s, didgeridoos. The garden’s absorbed some great music over the past few days, including the Celtic session from Friday night (mandolin and tin whistle).

    • Morrissey 1.1

      With all those Frenchmen and Italians, Robert, Riverton is truly the “Riviera of the South.”

    • One Two 1.2


      Sounds like a fulfilling way of life you have created…and with global reach to those who share similar interests…

      Robert are you able to post links to the earlier articles you posted on this site?

      I read them at the time but unable to locate now…


    • One Two 1.3

      I’ve located the guest posts you wrote, Robert…


  2. Jenny - How to get there? 2

    Asbestos President

    Trashing the environment for money.

    An object lesson

    Stuff.co.nz ran an article today on the dangers of asbestos…

    Toxic homes: New Zealand’s asbestos legacy

    Rob Stock – February 24, 2019


    Like Australia, New Zealand was an enthusiastic user of asbestos in building materials, and many older commercial and residential homes, an estimated 40,000 in Christchurch alone…..

    ….More than 170 New Zealanders die each year from diseases related to past asbestos exposure, and every tradesperson is likely to come in contact with it…..

    Australia is taking a much stronger line on asbestos.

    The country remembers a bitter fight for justice and compensation of workers against James Hardie, which was dubbed Killer Company, and created the government-funded Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agencywith the ultimate aim of cleansing the country’s buildings of asbestos, and tracking the health of people exposed to it……


    New Zealand ranks behind Australia for deaths per million people from the cancer Mesothelioma, which is caused by asbestos inhalation……

    A Brief History of Absestos in New Zealand.

    There have been two plants producing asbestos cement products. The first was established in 1938 at Penrose in Auckland, by the Australian Company James Hardie Ltd. A second factory, operated by well known local company, Fletchers, was established in the Christchurch suburb of Riccarton in 1943.

    Depending on the item being manufactured, they were made of a mixture of sand,  Portland cement, and usually between 5 and 15 percent of either Chrysotile, Amosite or Crocidolite. Asbestos was added because of its inherent properties (high tensile strength, fibrous nature and heat resistance) which provided reinforcing to the sheet material.

    The Auckland plant produced asbestos cement products until 1987 although from 1983 asbestos had been phased out of sheet products and was only included in pipes. At peak production in the 1970’s the Penrose plant employed up to 600 employees at any one time.

    The Christchurch plant, called Dunrock Industries, operated until 1974. Estimates of the numbers employed over the life of the factory vary between 900 and 2000 – and are confused by the fact that large numbers of casual workers were employed.

    It seems that just like the tobacco industry, those who make their money from deadly products, don’t like to give up even just some of the money they made.. 

    The struggle against James Hardy is a case in point.

    James Hardy was New Zealand’s biggest manufacturer and importer of asbestos products.

    Battling James Hardie


    The Sydney law firm Turner James Hardie had quit its manufacture of asbestos products in the early 1980s and attempted to leave its asbestos past behind. This attempt eventually failed, although its financial settlements with its former workers were for many years resolved outside the public arena of the law courts, keeping the company out of the public spotlight while it attempted to re-make its image….


    By the beginning of this century the battleground has moved to the health damage caused by ‘third wave’ asbestos exposure in the home – what one lawyer called ‘the urban nightmare’.

    James Hardie twisted every which way to distance its current operations from its ongoing asbestos liabilities.

    In 2001 the company established the Medical Research and Compensation Foundation (MRCF) with a total of $293 million dollars in funds, saying that this fund would be able to meet all the future asbestos claims.

    James Hardie then relocated its company off-shore in Holland leaving behind the compensation fund, which was found to have a massive financial shortfall…..

    Coming back to Donald Trump.

    It seems that Donald Trump is one of those who made some of their money out of asbestos through his investments in property.
    Properties that used asbestos in their construction, that if liability had to be paid for, the President would stand to make a large financial loss.

    So Donald Trump is using the office of President of the United States to ‘rehabilitate’ asbestos.

    President Trump’s long-time love affair with asbestos is making its way into federal policy

    RYAN BORT – Rolling Stone, August 7, 2018

    Some of President Trump’s most cartoonishly evil policy initiatives have come at the expense of the environment. In the past few months alone, his administration haslifted a ban importing big-game hunting trophies, sought torepeal California emissions standardsand releaseda plan to gut the Endangered Species Act. It’s all done in the name of unmitigated capitalism, to which the president clearly feels the environment is beholden. So too, apparently, is the health of Americans, as the Environmental Protection Agency is now allowing asbestos to be legally used in construction….

    The deadly effects of asbestos were well known in the 1920s

    History Of Asbestos Health EffectsLong Documented History of Asbestos Diseases in Exposed Workers


    In the early 1900s, Dr. Hubert Montague Murray at the Charing Cross Hospital in London reported on lung disease in an asbestos textile worker. An autopsy confirmed the presence of asbestos fibers in the worker’s lungs.

    It was not until 1924, however, that the first case of asbestosis was reported in a medical journal. Dr. W.E. Cooke performed an autopsy on a woman who had worked in an asbestos textile factory for 17 years and died at the age of 33. The examination showed the lung scarring that is associated with the disease. Within the next few years, several studies revealed that asbestos workers were dying of lung ailments at young ages……


    The naturally occurring fibers are named ‘asbestos’ by Pliny the Elder, a Roman scholar. He also describes illnesses in slaves who worked around the substance at this time….

    As damning as all this evidence is….

    As humanity battles with the asbestos industry and their political advocates, into the 21st Century, we are getting an object lesson into how difficult it will be to combat climate change.

    And again the President of the United States is in the forefront of the campaign to roll back any attempts to put limits on the fossil fuel industry to damage the climate. 

    The history of the struggle against asbestos seems to show that nothing will stop us destroying the climate…

    (to be continued)

  3. greywarshark 3

    I didn’t see How to at the top of the menu for the day when I came to TS this morning and panicked. So good to see you Robert, for a while I thought you weren’t around.

    But when I get here I find a dump of stuff on asbestos from Jenny – How… You have taken up the whole column with long information pastes about it Jenny,,, It is an important matter and needs discussing. But not on this post which has different objectives.

    Why do you do this Jenny? And why did you incorporate the post name into your pseudonym. Have you decided to take it over as your own stamping ground. Because that seems to be what you want. To stamp on the post and devitalise it with the problems and politics that are there all the time for discussion!

    I want to go beyond the problems and look for positive and useful things we can do personally to be more resilient now and in the future. That was what we envisaged when it was first discussed. And I think people like that aspect and aim. I want this to be an encouraging place where we find solutions and swap good ideas for managing and overcoming problems. You are spoiling that focus.

    Can i ask the moderator to transfer this to a post of its own? Is that possible? It is a meaty matter and needs and deserves a post of its own so people can concentrate on the science and the problem and all that relates to it.

  4. Morena, everyone. I came across something cool yesterday, which may be of interest to some.

    I was in the square, Christchurch, yesterday. First time there for a year or so. The central city is starting to take off again and there is a lot of new building, including a terrific new library. The square is still pretty dull though, cruelly dominated by the ruins of the Cathedral.

    What got my interest was some musicians playing on the grassed area on the south west side of the square. They set up around lunchtime and were looking to play into the evening.

    The cool thing about it was that it was apparently informal. No permission from the council and power apparently gifted by one of the nearby food carts.

    I watched a couple of the acts, both solo singer/guitarists. They went down pretty well with the locals and the many tourists wandering by looking for signs of life.

    I went away to do some other stuff and returned later in the arvo. The guerilla gig was still going strong, now with a full band playing.

    I really liked the idea that some Christchurch people are not waiting for the council or the local chamber of commerce to bring some life back to the central city. They’re just getting on with it, which is kinda cool.

  5. rata 5

    A four day working week is long over due.
    This would give an extra 370,000 Kiwis a four day working week.
    Unemployment solved.

  6. greywarshark 6

    In Christchurch the washing machine dance spot is still on open area I think in Armagh St near Regent Street. You put your money in the slot and get your music out instead of putting your washing in! Been there for ages with a little square of decking to dance on. I think you can also put your own cd in. Just forget the finer details but there have been all sorts of ideas showing the vim of creative, vital Christchurch people who are more than just an old colonial Cathedral copying an ancient English edifice.

    And don’t forget New Regent Street – great for cafes – Kindle making wood furniture, pieces from recycled collapsed housing timber after quake. And trundle around in the tram, a great innovation fired by John Britten’s
    enthusiasm. RIP.

    The Margaret Mahy Playground is a great area for watching people enjoying themselves and having simple fun whether you have children to watch over, or just would like to be in a place with positive vibes. (Armagh-Manchester St area)

    Chch map of event places for interest.

  7. Janet 7

    Greywarshark ” I want to go beyond the problems and look for positive and useful things we can do personally to be more resilient now and in the future. …..

    I was uplifted yesterday when visiting my teenaged granddaughters in the Far North.
    They are working on a project with three other young people. They are making plant pots from newspaper to plant the vegetable seeds they are germinating in seed trays right now to later take down to their local centre and sell by donation. Why, to encourage the people there to start growing vegetable gardens again.

    It will be interesting to see how this pans out.

  8. greywarshark 8

    A positive – it’s showering in Nelson and did so overnight. A very good sprinkle.

    Practicality – I shifted car out where the rain could give it a bit of wash down.
    Appreciation – Dave at the pumps also cleaned my front and back windows and we had a short discussion on the world and rain etc. A bit of hum-comm there.

  9. greywarshark 9

    Great Janet
    i think that is good. It not only talks the talk but walks it. That idea would get us all going on a good path. A small step towards the thousand eh.

    I have in mind something they might like to try. This is what I thought – haven’t done it yet. Some of the big outlets, (I think the last one I got was New World) sell cold drinks in a large clear plastic container with a rounded fitting lid with a hole in it for straw. I reckon they would be great for mini terrariums.

    Cleaned, and with a little layer of smallish stones at bottom, then some nice potting mix with helpful bits for growing plants in it, up to about 2/3 high then wet it so it’s damp, dig your finger into the middle ready for a small leaved fern (perhaps one of those cheapish ones at market for say $2 (could put a groundcover in too so would need two spaces on opposite sides (pushing it for room), trim the plants back a bit so there are perhaps two short stems, and then tamp with fingers so plant is a bit below surface of pot.mix. Could add more if room but keep under 3/4 and tamp with fingers then spray with plain water, or dribble and then put lid on carefully – might need someone to hold container straight while putting the lid firmly in place, but carefully so you don’t bend or dent plastic.

    Then a teaspoon of water daily or twice? through the hole at the top; the lid shouldn’t be taken off if you can avoid that. Watched, it would tell what it needs. (Could have a bit of very diluted growth mix, seaweed type whatever, in a special wee bottle – well marked Special for …. don’t touch – then it will always be in its place ready and with the right mix in.)

    And that will grow up and probably fluff out the top with lovely small leaves, and they will need to be parted to get the liquid in. Could do well to nip with your fingers if growing high so that new growth comes at the bottom and even with scissors that fit down through hole, and cut back some of the main lines of growth. Bit like a bonsai. And would be long-lasting for little care-time.

  10. greywarshark 10

    I recommend Robert at 2.2 – look at the link thre. There is detail on backyard growing and the food that can be produced there sounds outstanding.

    But go on further to read about Happen Films and the people involved in it drawn from NZ, Australia, UK etc. There is a lot about them all and their wonderful expertise. People to support as they live the life and dument it and inspire others, and then come and pehraps record the results and inspire others and the circle widens and ripples out and we all benefit and add strength to the individual and to the whole.


    The whole is more than the sum of its parts – Aristotle
    What does that mean?
    Also translated as “The whole is greater than the part,” this quote is about how much better things are together than as pieces.

    The idea is used heavily in Synergy and Gestalt as well as in non-linear fields. It is also used by people looking for something somewhat cryptic to say to sound smart.

    This quote reminds us that what one can do, many can do better. At least in most cases. Put the opposite way, if you take something that works and remove some parts, it’s not as useful as it was.

    But putting that part back in, the thing is whole again, and much more useful than the pile of parts it was before.

    synergy – Dictionary Definition : Vocabulary.com
    synergy. You write the lyrics and your friend composes the music. Separately each of you is pretty good, but together you’ve got a mega-hit song. That’s synergy …

    The Beatles had it – they could join and turn apparently incomprehensible stuff into deep music.
    Come Together is wild. It doesn’t advance the main task
    about sustainability and climate change forcing change but they can take our minds off hard thinking for a colourful psychedelic change for a few minutes and a change is as good as a rest it is said.
    This is a colourful graphic effect for Come Together.

  11. Janet 11

    Yes it is important that we recycled already made plastic items back into a use that means another plastic item does not need to be made.
    Both horticultural and agricultural farms are producing a mountain of plastic that tends to be dumped not recycled. The black planter bags that come in all sizes, for example, are rarely reused.
    I suggested to the grandchildren that while their newspaper pots are an excellent way to offer their small seedling plants I did not feel that their project would be compromised by planting some up into recycled black planter bags big enough for the vegetables to grow to maturity. In fact it would probably suit those too lazy to dig a garden first!
    The plastic around the hay bales. How can it be reused rather than dumped ?

  12. David Mac 12

    I suspect this is a stupid idea but I’m struggling to see why…

    Structures made from interlocking porous paper ‘origami’ blocks. Can be shipped flat and once on site filled with dry pre mixed concrete like material. Unfold the origami blocks open, fill them with a homebrew recipe for the dry cement? chopped up flax fibre? etc. The building block structure assembled like an oversized kid’s construction set and then hosed down. When it dries out, a solid stucture. Pass through pockets can be made in the paper parts so that snug fit reinforcing can be passed through the dry structure. The exposed paper will erode, leave it raw, jumbo Lego look, or put a wipe of plaster over it.

    Could be a rabbit hutch, compost bin or floor. The means to make large items could come in small packages and be relatively cheap.

  13. greywarshark 13

    Hi Janet
    I’ll see if this works as a reply. The hay bales plastic was being picked up for later use in some places I thought.

    If the planter bags could be obtained in good order, presumably they wouldn’t need cleaning and could be just filled and planted. It could help for people to order what plants they needed from an offered list of possibilities and then pick them up a group of plants and pay – something, on a specified date.

    After the project got set, pre-pay would be even better, with proviso that they would be held for an extra week only and after that no hold – no refunds. People who don’t turn up to collect are a pain. You can have good plants, a lot of time put into them but it is discouraging when they are not bought. Closer integration of gardener and workers would make for good turnover and top plants being put in.

    Also plastic bag lined cartons can be good. Biggish bags from packaging of housewares, those in cartons of bananas, etc. Find strong cartons they fit, fill with soil, few little holes in plastic and fresh vegs for flatters. Some twine around or looping over for ease of transport and holding together would be useful.

  14. Stuart Munro 14

    There’s reason not to do that – concrete tubes are already used for casting some kinds of concrete piles, https://www.shardlow.co.nz/blog/formatubes/ and there are inflatable concrete buildings available in the UK.

    Standard forms for raised beds, fish tanks or hydroponic use would probably be popular and don’t seem to be available at present. Even the sandwich panels of the Last Resort http://www.lastresortkaramea.co.nz/ are not routinely available – everyone who wants something like them must make their own.

  15. greywarshark 15

    David Mac
    Strong brown paper as a preferred thickness, using old newspapers pressed together?

    Sounds doable. I helped make some mud bricks once. Getting them out of their moulds was hard yakka. This would be easier method. They would have to be shifted from filling place to permanent, or put in place to be filled. A moving belt so the filled blocks appeared beside a worker and then got lined up to slide into place would help.

    A new version of the cob hut.

  16. WeTheBleeple 16

    Resilience is a keyword we’ll see a lot more of. Resilience is the opposite of efficiency. Efficient systems break and everything stops. Resilient systems have deliberately designed redundancies. Like my Taro patch. I eat it sometimes… but there’s this massive store of tubers there that are mostly ornamental. However, if, at a pinch, I need a feed, I’ve got plenty. So if the garden for some reason fails to deliver potatoes, there’s always the taro, or there’s the kumara that I use as a ground cover under trees out front.

    Having food as part of the landscape provides food security. It seems silly when I can go down the supermarket and just buy groceries, to actually work on my landscape? But if the supermarket fails (it does for me, in that the food is mostly processed/sprayed – not quality), then the garden saves the day.

    Resilience can be about preparing for hard times in times of plenty. Some may be time poor but utilise cash resources to employ others to build resilience for them.

    Water, power, food resilience. Otherwise known as insurance.

    To build resilient systems, take your cues from nature.

    Here’s part one of Bill Mollison on cool climates.

    Here’s part two.

    • WeTheBleeple 16.1

      I don’t know why two links are giving the same result sorry, enjoy part one twice. 😀

      Here’s the urban episode from the same series

      • WeTheBleeple 16.1.1

        I’ll repost this one in future early as it needs an audience. If you are looking for an ‘ideal’ suburban environment, there is one on show above.

        Where the house prices have gone up while neighboring McMansions have lost value. Check it out, be inspired.

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