web analytics

It’s past time to be bold about water

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, February 25th, 2017 - 147 comments
Categories: capitalism, disaster, Economy, election 2017, Environment, farming, greens, labour, maori party, water - Tags: , ,

In the wake of the debacle that is the National Government’s new ‘water quality’ policy how about we look at what should be done.

First up, change the government. It’s blatantly obvious that not only will National never do the right thing, but they are in fact taking the piss. So it’s worth voting on the left on water alone. Best case scenario is a strong Labour/Green coalition government with enough Green MPs to bring about real change in policy. I hope both parties campaign hard on water over the next 7 months.

We can see Labour and the Greens have some initial overlap already. This from Green MP Catherine Delahunty,

David and I were in agreement that there we must change the standards for freshwater to be genuinely swimmable. We agree that we need a price on the commercial use of water, urgently.

Great to see an intentional indication of where the two parties already agree. The Greens naturally enough have a stronger stance,

… we have to abandon a corporate agriculture that is trashing our waterways and that Fonterra, the Government, Councils and the irrigation companies do not have a mandate from the people of this country for business as usual. The Regional Councils are developing complex long-term plans to mitigate the pollution of freshwater but unless they help change the system the diffuse pollution of rivers and lakes will continue.

Green Party solutions,

  • making rivers swimmable by changing the NPS (National Policy Statement Freshwater),
  • setting strong limits for discharges of nitrogen,
  • putting a price on the commercial use of water,
  • no more dairy conversions,
  • a moratorium on bottled water consents,
  • a levy on polluters used for riparian fencing and planting,
  • reducing cow numbers across the country.
  • step up on urban pollution as well
  • design wetlands for stormwater
  • reduce urban pollution via better clean energy public transport
  • have better wastewater systems that use plants to clean waste
  • take some of the chemicals that contaminate sewage out of products we use daily.

That’s a range of cutting edge solutions on saving our water that are still doable for the mainstream. For two mainstream political parties I think it’s worthy and worthwhile supporting as a starting point.

And it’s not enough. It’s still adapting around a fundamentally unsustainable death cult that says the growth economy is what sustains us, instead of seeing the economy as something that arises from and is utterly dependent upon the natural world. National are hell bent on maximum extraction before collapse. The mainstream culture is still trying to balance having rivers to swim in but let’s do the least amount in order to have that, because, the economy. Note that Delahunty uses the word mitigate in reference to Regional Council long term plans. That means limit the damage we are going to keep doing or that we can’t control under the current and intended systems we have. The Greens are taking a bold stand to do better than that, and we need change within the culture (that’s us) to support them.

A while back I put up a post about water and cultural values, which I will quote the last part of below. If we truly want to get this right then we have to make the decision to value water in its own right, not just as a resource for us to manage. We will also have to make the choice to prioritise water over money. Water is life. This is the fight that’s coming down hard and fast on the planet as whole, it’s what’s been happening at Standing Rock, it’s why people are risking prison to resist. We have to make the connections between the growth economy, capitalism, bottled water, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, the looming water wars, drought, climate change, climate change wars, industrial dairying, disease, species extinction, ecological collapse, and our deep desire to be able to swim in our own goddam rivers, and know that they are all the same thing and that it just has to stop. Water is both the front line and the rallying cry.

I don’t expect Labour or the Greens to push this more than they are, because their job is bring government policy into being that the mainstream can align with. But there is no reason that we cannot lead the way from outside of parliament.

From the post on Water and Cultural Values,

There is something very wrong with this picture. It’s the cultural values that see water primarily as a resource to be managed, whether that’s for commerce or recreation. Waterways have no intrinsic value. Water is there for our use and if we manage it right then all will be well, as if we have ever been smart enough to know how to manage it right. But a culture that doesn’t expect to drink from the rivers will also not look after them to a standard that supports the ecosystem that the water itself is dependent on. Water is life not just because we need to drink it, but because everything we have depends on the environment we live in being healthy and sustaining itself over time. The Standard commentor Roy Cartland,

Wade-able, swimmable, drinkable: these are all standards lower than what most fish can survive at. Just because an adult human can drink it, does not mean an ecosystem can survive in it. We need higher standards than any party is promoting.

(I got all that and more from Mike Joy’s lecture.)

Let’s look at a different set of values. The Māori Party alone say fresh water should be safe to drink, swim in, and gather kai from. In their policy on water they frame it as a taonga.

Water – Te Mana o Te Wai

The Māori Party established Te Mana o Te Wai – the health and well-being of our water – as a driving policy for freshwater management. The three elements of Te Mana o Te Wai are:

te hauora o te wai – the health and mauri (quality and vitality) of water

te hauora o taiao – the health and mauri of the environment and

te hauora o te tangata – the health and mauri of the people.

The Māori Party want to “ensure that Te Mana o Te Wai remains as the overarching objective for freshwater management”.

Leaving aside issues of the Māori Party’s dilemma in supporting National (please, not in this conversation*), what would it look like if NZ decided that the mana of the water was the guiding principle not just for all decisions but for the very relationship we have with water itself?

__________________________________________________________________

* seriously, no gratuitous Māori Party-bashing. If you think you can make an argument about the Māori Party’s usefulness in this debate make sure you back it up from their policy and actual voting record and relate your comment back to the post, but really I’d much prefer it if people took the post seriously and looked at the cultural values being expressed. Generic comments about the Māori Party as National Party stooges will be shifted and likely result in a ban on the basis of derailment.

147 comments on “It’s past time to be bold about water”

  1. greg 1

    stop the dairy industry externalizing the costs of the pollution to society . destroying the environment is just bad economics. dairy industry need to start accounting for the total cost. its totally wrong to expect society to tolerate the destruction of the environment in the interests of the few

  2. It’s not that they’re taking the piss, it’s that this is an election year, water quality is going to be a big election issue, they need to be able to present themselves as doing something to address that issue, but they also need to be careful to not actually do anything to address it because farmers are a big part of their constituency.

    So their latest announcement isn’t some kind of joke, it’s actually a finely-tuned response to what for them is a difficult situation. Even the worst people on the planet have reasons for the things they do.

    But yeah, bottom line is nothing gets done unless we change the government. Anyone voting National or its support parties this year is voting for more shit in our rivers.

  3. Cinny 3

    Good to see Rachel calling out Nickoff on this issue. Proud of her, all the best Rach.

    Nelson Labour candidate Rachel Boyack calls out Nick Smith on river quality report

    Will be interested to find where this story features in the print issue of the Nelson Mail, print version comes out after lunch today.
    Nelson voters need educating, Nickoff has been brain washing them for years.
    I’ve got my own plan for educating the nelson public 😀 and it’s going to be AWESOME 😀

  4. Antoine 4

    What would a Labour-led government do about freshwater?

    A.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 4.1

      Why don’t you go to their website and ask them? Too lazy?

      As a habitual National dupe, what have you ever done about freshwater? That’s right: you’ve voted for a party that shits in the water.

      • Antoine 4.1.1

        I didnt ask about the Labour policy or the Green policy; I want to know what a Labour-NZ First-Green government would actually do.

        Or are you saying that a Labour-led government would aim to follow Labour’s policies, irrespective of what the Greens and NZ First think on the issue?

        • One Anonymous Bloke 4.1.1.1

          More than the National Party. Read their (G/L/NZF) policies.

          • Antoine 4.1.1.1.1

            Which is the one that’s actually going to be adopted? I won’t bother with the other two.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 4.1.1.1.1.1

              What do you care? It’s quite clear you are here to ask bad faith questions and you will carry on voting for more shit anyway.

              • Antoine

                Well, I’m not changing my vote over this unless someone can show me how a Labour-led government will improve the situation.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Then keep on voting for shit. Your call.

                • weka

                  “Well, I’m not changing my vote over this unless someone can show me how a Labour-led government will improve the situation.”

                  I also find this line disingenuous. Obviously no-one can predict the exact make up of a left-wing govt water policy, because we have no idea who that govt will be made up of, or what numbers.

                  However we do know what the baseline for the party that will lead a left govt is. I put a bit in the post, and Jenny has posted more in the comments. So at a minimum I expect a left wing govt to use the water standards that Labour is referring to.

                  Go look them up if you want the actual detail. Myself, I think that it’s blatantly obvious that a change in govt will lead to an improvement in water. So obvious that it’s hard to see what your are trying to do here.

                  • weka

                    btw, it’s nobody’s job here to educate you. You can ask questions because there are lots of knowledgeable people here, but when you start asking repeatedly in a way that suggests you’re not willing to do your own homework, people will get antsy. You’ll get more respect if you look it up yourself and report back.

                    • Antoine

                      > You’ll get more respect if you look it up yourself and report back.

                      I can look up all 3 policies, or I could if Labour’s one was publically available (as far as I can tell it’s not), but that still won’t answer the question of which one is actually going to happen.

                      A.

                    • weka

                      which puts you in the same boat as every other voter in NZ. I don’t see the problem tbh.

                  • Antoine

                    It’s my nature. I see a problem, it seems concerning, I’d like to know what the proposal is for dealing with it. If you can’t tell me what the proposal is, you can’t expect me to be much impressed.

                    [now you look like you are trolling. I don’t give a shit if you are impressed or not. What I care about is whether you want to discuss the post or not. You are looking more like you want to run a derailment line of “I’m going to vote National because I don’t like MMP”. You’ve asked your question, it’s been answered, move on or risk being moderated.- weka]

                    • Antoine

                      Ok

                      Let me make up for my transgressions by posting some actual information – the NZ First environment policy. It is here http://www.nzfirst.org.nz/environment_and_conservation.

                      Note it does specifically provide for subsidising dams for irrigation schemes.

                      A.

                    • Wayne

                      NZ First is not going to allow Green Party policy destroy the livelihoods of many of their supporters. Many come from the rural sector, or are in jobs supported by the rural sector.

                      So if there is a Labour /NZ First/Green govt, most of the Green policies set out in the article, at least as they relate to farming, will not happen.

                      The Grens will get most of their urban policies (but not the ban on new roads), and they would also get an expanded campaign for more stream margin planting. In fact that might tie into a job creation scheme.

                      But in any event Winston can just as easily go with the Nats as he can with Labour/Greens. It will depend on the final balance in the parliament and the nature of the deal he is offered.

                      It is already quite clear that Bill English does not come with the issues that John Key had with Winston, so the picture on the right is different to what it was in 2016.

                    • weka

                      That’s close to how I see it too. The left needs to be under no illusions that if NZF get to be kingmaker we can easily end up with a 4th National govt.

                      The main bit I disagree with is Wayne’s implication that Green Party want to destroy jobs (a fairly typical RW spin), or that the Green’s policies will destroy jobs, or that Green policies will leave many rural people unemployed. Might want to put up a citation there Wayne to back up what you are trying to say.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Wayne will find zero evidence for his lies.

                    • KJT

                      Wayne.
                      Funny thing is that deterioration of the environment is going to DESTROY all jobs. Dairying in particular, is very dependent on quality water supplies.

                      The Greens destroying jobs is an oft repeated meme that NACT, and Labour, like to use. In fact there are more potential jobs in a sustainable economy. In some countries jobs in sustainable energy have overtaken those in hydrocarbons.
                      Not in New Zealand, due to Nationals inability to see more than a year into the future.

                      There has been plenty of discussion within the Greens about how to destock,, and sustainable farming, without destroying farmers in the process.
                      One of the options is funding farming into more sustainable and value added farming, which will benefit farming families in the long term. Another is getting land prices back to a level where farmers can afford to look after resources.

                      Meanwhile NACT are still spending on “buggy whip makers”.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    Leaving aside Antoine’s snide bad faith (I wonder if he and other National Party avatars realise how utterly transparent they are) it’s a valid question.

                    From the NZ1st policy statement

                    Water is a common good and cannot be owned by any person or by the Crown.

                    Any such rights residing in any person must be established under the common law through existing legal processes.
                    Priorities for granting water rights must place public benefit before private benefit.
                    Requirements for domestic supply of water must prevail over all other takes and uses.
                    The current first in – first served approach for commercial water rights must be abandoned in favour of a strategic approach which places national needs in order of priority for the granting of water rights.
                    Requirements for the use of water for industrial purposes, electricity generation or agricultural irrigation (including forestry) must only be met to the extent that both the requirements of the RMA are met and sustainable agricultural outcomes are also met, including optimisation of water use efficiency.
                    Rights to take and use water are available only to New Zealand people (citizens and permanent residents) and New Zealand owned companies, and must not be alienated to overseas persons or interests whether directly or indirectly.
                    Water must not be taxed or subjected to any charge beyond the recovery of capital, and the operational costs (including a fair rate of return) of taking storing and reticulating it for the uses intended.
                    The special character of New Zealand’s remaining wild and scenic rivers must be protected by clearly identifying and listing them and by adopting specific policies for this purpose..

                    Plus a dogwhistle or two.

                    The Greens:

                    1. Establishing a protected rivers network to permanently safeguard our most precious rivers similar to the permanent protection given to national parks.

                    2. Setting robust water quality standards that ensure rivers are clean and healthy enough for swimming

                    3. Keeping our wild rivers wild by not building any new dams on them.

                    Labour:

                    We will introduce a revised NPS on water quality based on the principles of the Sheppard version. That means:

                    Clean rivers and lakes will not be allowed to get dirty;

                    Dirty rivers and lakes will be cleaned up over a generation; and

                    Increases in intensity of land use will be controlled rather than permitted as of right.

                    Improvements to farm practice will be required to offset the additional environmental burden caused by more livestock, fertiliser and effluent.

                    (cf: Jenny Kirk @4.2.1.2.1.2)

                    1. The policies are not as disparate as Antoine pretends to care they are. There is plenty of common ground.
                    2. Who will judge which rivers are “precious”? Certainly not the fauna that rely on the remainder.
                    3. The RMA is already in place. Once the National Party stains have been wiped off, it provides a good starting point. There is plenty of institutional expertise available already.

                    This is do-able, but first, just as with housing, wages, Climatology, human rights and the rule of law, corruption, fraud, and education, the National Party has to be removed from government.

    • Cinny 4.2

      Just did a quick google for you A. Turns out their policy is about clean water without ‘moving the goal posts’.

      http://www.labour.org.nz/labour_s_water_policy_is_for_our_kids_not_national

      • Antoine 4.2.1

        It’s kind of underwhelming. Long-term aspirational targets plus a charge on irrigation.

        Also where is the policy? This is just a press release, not the policy itself, which I can’t find.

        A.

        • weka 4.2.1.1

          Labour removed all their 2014 election policy off their website recently as part of the the election year. They decided that after the last election all policy would be reviewed and reintroduced. That’s the process they are in now.

          • Antoine 4.2.1.1.1

            Oh well, wake me up when they have some policy in the area, then

            A.

            [how about I just ban you site-wide until Monday instead? Don’t troll my posts again. – weka]

        • weka 4.2.1.2

          “It’s kind of underwhelming.”

          Then vote for the Greens. Because Labour’s position is miles better than Nationals, but if we want to see real change we need maximum Green MPs in parliament.

          • Antoine 4.2.1.2.1

            > Labour’s position is miles better than Nationals

            Is it really? Nothing in Labour’s press release gives me confidence that they would clean up our waterways. Aspirational standards and an irrigation tax, as I said below.

            > if we want to see real change we need maximum Green MPs in parliament

            Has Labour indicated that it will adopt Green policy increasingly, as the Green voting strength increases?

            A.

            • weka 4.2.1.2.1.1

              At a very basic level the more MPs a coalition partner has, the more clout it has, both in parliament and in policy development/implementation. That’s how it’s supposed to work. We’ve just forgotten because National aren’t really a coalition govt, they’re a FPP mentality govt with a few add ons to give them the legitimate numbers.

              “Is it really? Nothing in Labour’s press release gives me confidence that they would clean up our waterways. Aspirational standards and an irrigation tax, as I said below.”

              Yeah, but I don’t see anything from you that suggests water is something you would change your vote over.

              “aspirational standards”, lol, from someone who votes for the party that made vacuous an art form.

            • Jenny Kirk 4.2.1.2.1.2

              Some specific actions Labour will take in government.

              Freshwater: We will introduce a revised NPS on water quality based on the principles of the Sheppard version. That means:

              Clean rivers and lakes will not be allowed to get dirty;

              Dirty rivers and lakes will be cleaned up over a generation; and

              Increases in intensity of land use will be controlled rather than permitted as of right.

              Improvements to farm practice will be required to offset the additional environmental burden caused by more livestock, fertiliser and effluent.

              All the above are quotes from a speech given by Labour MP David Parker in Christchurch on 5 May 2014.
              Nothing has changed – this continues to be Labour’s policy on fresh water.

  5. Jenny Kirk 5

    Totally agree with the post, Weka, and for the record this is what Labour is saying :

    Eight years ago National spiked the National Policy Statement recommended by former head Environment Court Judge Sheppard after the full RMA process. The core provision of that NPS was that increases in farming intensity (more livestock, irrigation or fertiliser per hectare) would no longer be permitted.
    For eight years, they have overseen increasing pollution of our rivers, adopting the pathetic “wadeable” standard while allowing river pollution to get worse.

    Labour will re-issue the NPS without the trickery. We will return to the principles of the Sheppard NPS. We will enforce the existing swimmable standard, not National’s dirty substitute.

    It is a birthright to be able to swim in our rivers and Labour will reverse the damage wrought under National,” says David Parker

    – Media release NZLP 21/2/2017

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1702/S00334/smiths-water-quality-con-falling-apart.htm

    Labour Leader Andrew Little says the new policy is “a jaw-dropping display of political hypocrisy which picked up on what Labour had promised in 2008. National has simply wasted nine years of dithering ……and our waterways have got dirtier”.

    – Stuff 23/2/2017

    Meanwhile up the north here (Kaipara and Whangarei rohe) we have had one Maori man who, with a growing number of volunteers, has spent the last few years kayaking up and down the rivers and streams documenting and taking photos of cattle in rivers – and asking the Northland Regional Council to take action. Slowly making an impact – but like the govt the NRC has put a 20 year deadline on farmers to fence their properties from the water – and that is far too long a time span. They need to be doing it now. (To be fair, a few farmers ARE doing it – but not enough).

    Millan Ruka has spent his retirement savings, and his retirement time, on doing this work, and he and his friends are starting to make an impact, but not yet enough to really get the NRC moving quickly.

    I pehea ngā maunga, awa, koawaawa i pāorooro ai?

    ‘In what way do the rivers, streams and mountains echo?’ The meaning of this whakatauki runs deep, linking people to the land, the water and to each other. The echoes and vibrations of sound reach afar symbolising our whakapapa links to one and other via the natural environment.

    – Copied from Te Uriroroi Hapu Environmental Management Plan

    http://www.wdc.govt.nz/PlansPoliciesandBylaws/Plans/DistrictPlan/Documents/Version-2-Te-Uriroroi-Hapu-Environment-Plan-and-Whatitiri-Hapu-Environment-Plan.pdf

    So – although local Maori in the north are really concerned about the state of their waterways, and working at getting much better freshwater quality, I – personally – am not at all sure that the Maori Party has yet picked up on their own policy for water and have not yet seen any evidence that they are intent on doing so.

    Their words are great, but action would be even better.

    [links and formatting tidied up so its easier to read – weka]

    • Antoine 5.1

      Where can I see the Sheppard NPS? Or, what are its principles that Labour proposes to readopt?

      Does it really say that no increase in farming will be permitted (as you quote above)? If so, is that Labour’s proposal?

      • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.1

        farming

        🙄

        Bad faith commenter misrepresents policy position. Probably deliberately.

  6. Ian 6

    So reducing my theoretical nitrate leaching 35 percent by 2025 is not doing anything?
    I get the impression with this hit job on farming that nothing we do to improve the environment will get any recognition.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1

      Can’t you tell the difference between yourself – a self-aggrandising fatmouth – and farmers as a group? Get a clue: even your reps pay lip service to the problem.

      • Ian 6.1.1

        No need to carry on like an unpaid whore .what’s your problem?why are you so offensive??

        • weka 6.1.1.1

          Presumably an unpaid whore would have a legitimate grievance. Is that what you are suggesting for OAB?

          He’s always like that, and sometimes we’re a bit sensitive to trolling here. Your comments are often too brief to fully understand your point so it’s natural that people will add their interpretation to them. OAB tends to the humiliation as tool end of the political spectrum.

          • Ian 6.1.1.1.1

            If you want real people to engage and have a good yak that prik needs to go

            [have a read of the Policy and About. You are free to not like any commenter, and to criticise their politics or even behaviour, but there’s a line when it comes to telling the authors how to run the site – weka]

        • One Anonymous Bloke 6.1.1.2

          Why am I so offensive? Perhaps, just maybe, when you tell lies about a “hit job on farming”, you are being offensive, aggressive even. I suggest that you stop lying and smearing and whining and pretending that having to obey the law is such an unconscionable burden, and see if you get a better response.

    • KJT 6.2

      Farming. Dairy in particular, have already been mentioned here for their stellar improvements in waterway fencing and effluent management.
      Unfortunately the intensification of dairying continues to offset mitigation efforts.

      I don’t think further conversions are good for existing farmers anyway.
      We are already the worlds largest dairy exporter. From what i see flooding the market even more is going to result in even lower returns.

      Destocking and lowering the costs of inputs may well make farmers better off, long term. As will New Zealanders being able to afford our own farm products.

      • Ian 6.2.1

        Please supply the financial budgets supporting your hypothesis and you will make a fortune on the back of all the super rich farmers that are following your words of wisdom.

        • weka 6.2.1.1

          I think the point is to get past the whole super rich thing.

          One of the biggest challenges is that too many farms carry too much debt. In that sense I see banks, farm advisors and the govt as culpable as the actual farmers. The whole set up around selling too, it really locks farmers into some pretty weird systems that are all about the dosh and not about the land or even the farmer necessarily. We’re a long way from home now.

    • weka 6.3

      “So reducing my theoretical nitrate leaching 35 percent by 2025 is not doing anything?
      I get the impression with this hit job on farming that nothing we do to improve the environment will get any recognition.”

      See this is a really good example of what the problem is. Reducing nitrate leachate needs to be done first in relation to existing rates and the catchment’s ability to manage that, not some random %, but ultimately looking at nitrates in isolation just keeps us in the ‘what can we get away with’ band, and that’s not going to be enough.

      So yeah, if that’s the position you are taking then you won’t get the recognition you want. Farmers let this situation get out of control as much as everyone else. If you manage the land then there is an additional onus on you as caretaker.

    • McFlock 6.4

      Didn’t you claim yesterday that you were a farmer who left the waterways around you “pristine”?

      35% of 0 is zero.

      • Ian 6.4.1

        The river on my boundary has trace levels of nitrate. I don’t know why I am required to lower nitrate leaching by 35 percent. Some pinhead bureaucrats have drawn a line on a map. One size fits all.

        • weka 6.4.1.1

          Are you a member of Federated Farmers?

          • Ian 6.4.1.1.1

            I am a member in the sense that I pay them an annual subscription. I don’t interact with them in any other way unless I need a hand to negotiate with those that are out to get me
            I have found over time that I am my best advocate

            • weka 6.4.1.1.1.1

              My suggestion then is that if you are unhappy with stupid regs from the Regional Council is that Federated Farmers are the ones to hold accountable.

              • Ian

                The feds are just another cog in the wheel.they had minimal input into the regulations .the ecan agenda was allways the only show in town. If you want to come and visit my wetland and share my passion for the natural environment I would be honoured to show you around

                • weka

                  What sort of farm is it?

                  Federated Farmers are hugely influential on what happens with regulations in NZ, including at the council level. I’m more familiar with the ORC, but what it looks like to me is that we would have had far better protections, regulatory and enforcement, if it weren’t for lobbying against that from the farming communities. So if the regs have ended up weird, that’s a big factor IMO.

                  Harder to tell with Ecan I guess given the govt fired the people that were elected to protect the water.

                  I am curious about why you have a problem with the push for better regulations if you are already on board with the need for things like wetlands.

                  • Ian

                    I don’t have any issue with better regulations. I do have an issue with so called experts that did a land based degree and worked a few weeks on a farm and think they know it all.Even though it was 30 years ago
                    Is my old mate Peter Bodecker still working at Otago Regional Council ?

                    • weka

                      “I do have an issue with so called experts that did a land based degree and worked a few weeks on a farm and think they know it all.”

                      Who is that?

                    • lprent []

                      Me. It was a bit more than a few weeks.

                      My parents had a 88 acre hill farm at Puhio that I worked on for most weekends and holidays from 1975-1978. I then spent 6 months working on a town supply at Alfriston, followed by a 5 months at Kinloch station before going to university. I continued to spend a lot of time working on farms and various other types of out door recreation. At least up until the net became interesting.

                      Like the factory work from 1974, the army from 1977 and the bar work from 1979 – the idea was to figure out what I was good at and what I wanted to do (or not do). Like everything that I do, I tend to go into it at depth – a lot of depth.

                    • weka

                      I reckon having teens and young adults work on the land would be one of the better moves we could make at this point. With jobs assigned based on suitability, and not with the aim of making them all farmers, but just to give them a good grounding in what that part of NZ is all about.

                    • Ian []

                      This current anti farmer Pol gram by labour and their green party partners against the farming community is an absolute disgrace. It is becoming very clear and understandable why Donald Trump got elected as the potus.

                    • lprent []

                      Why? All they are saying is that farmers should not need to not pollute to produce. Especially not polluting all our fresh water.

                      Hell – even Federated Farmers says that. http://www.fedfarm.org.nz/FFPublic/Policy/National/Water.aspx

                      Federated Farmers acknowledge that farming has an impact on the environment but it is also part of the solution. It is working closely with primary sector organisations to support the development and uptake of initiatives to improve the efficiency of resource use and to minimise run-off and leaching from farmland. Over the last decade, significant progress has been made across all farming sectors: in addition to major investments in research and extension activities, a number of sectors have implemented audited self-management systems.

                      Federated Farmers emphasises that industry leadership, rather than regulation by arbitrary numbers, will deliver water-efficient and nutrient-efficient farming systems that enhance ecological and recreational values.

                      The only real problem is that the water quality levels in most farming areas over the last decade are still getting worse not better. That is a direct result of deliberate intensification that is obviating anything that farmers are managing to achieve. If farming cannot regulate itself to produce better results when it comes to water, then they will be regulated.

                      This regulation is no different to any other sectors of the economy. It happens to factories, sewerage systems, runoff systems for houses and other buildings, and everything else to do with water. Why should farmers be the exempt polluters?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      anti farmer

                      Liar.

                      I have been quoting Federated Farmers at you for a reason. In acknowledging the problems we face, are they "anti farmer"?

                      Stop whinging. Valid criticism is not an attack.

        • McFlock 6.4.1.2

          So what leeway do you have? Surely if your levels are that low then 35% would be well within the margin for error of the sampling method?

          • Ian 6.4.1.2.1

            You tell me. I had no input into this thing. I have just been told I have to reduce my nitrate leaching by 35 percent by 2025. I am just collecting facts and not getting too concerned about the rabid lefty bureaucrats that hate me and my family and and are trying to destroy my business. Just look at the vitriol directed at me and my family on this blog.you guys need to get out of your echoes chamber and come and visit the wetland on our Dairy farm. A cover charge will apply at my discretion

            • McFlock 6.4.1.2.1.1

              Meh. No matter. If your current leaching is tiny, even a tiny change to your land management will make the required change, it would hardly destroy your business.

              Meanwhile, the bad farmers who aren’t taking the same care that you currently are will have a more difficult job of it. But they shouldn’t be in the business if the only way they can do it is to have the rest of us put up with their pollution.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 6.4.1.2.1.2

              Ian @ 9:14am: reducing my theoretical nitrate leaching 35 percent by 2025 is not doing anything?

              Ian @ 11:38 pm: I have to reduce my nitrate leaching by 35 percent by 2025

              The first statement makes it sound as though Ian is doing it voluntarily. Over twelve hours later, the truth comes out: the requirement that he obey the law is a hate campaign.

              If you want to be trusted, my advice, Ian, is that you stop lying.

  7. Saarbo 7

    2 things
    1) This type of thing is happening throughout NZ, this will place a cap on Dairying.
    https://www.waikatoregion.govt.nz/council/policy-and-plans/plans-under-development/healthy-rivers-plan-for-change

    2) Whole provinces and most small towns in NZ rely on Dairy Farming for their existence.

    • Jenny Kirk 7.1

      Thanks for the link, Saarbo. Looks like Waikato regional council are a bit more on the ball than Northland RC.
      I’ll have a good read of this, and see if there’s anything there we can use up north when making our submissions on freshwater to the NRC. Waikato might be setting an example which the NRC could be persuaded to follow !

      • Saarbo 7.1.1

        Thanks Jenny, it was set up by a collaborative group of 24, pretty well balanced I think.

        We are in the process of setting up an Environmental Plan for our farm so that we are ready when it is implemented…it will definitely reduce contaminants into waterways quite significantly.

    • Jenny Kirk 8.1

      Yes, halfcrown, that is the sort of thing people up here are starting to realise – we don’t need this intensification of dairying if it means a dirty environment.
      Dairying could be cut back a fair bit, and our rivers separated out and cleaned up and re-vegetated – and we’d be back to a winning formula for all. But the government has to realise that too, and act on it – not put up sham ineffective so-called policies just to look good.

  8. “The Māori Party want to “ensure that Te Mana o Te Wai remains as the overarching objective for freshwater management”.”

    I like the framing here and I agree that the mana of the water is paramount – without that the mana of the people perish and the people perish too.

    for example

    Ngati Tama ki Te Waipounamu has applied directly to the Environment Minister Nick Smith for an unprecedented water conservation order for the aquifer that feeds Te Waikoropupu Springs in Golden Bay.

    Ngati Tama ki Te Waipounamu, and a Golden Bay resident Andrew Yiull, are using ‘Water Conservation Order’ provisions under the Resource Management Act to seek central Government protection of the aquifer.

    “Te Waikoropupu is known internationally, but the aquifer that supplies it, in contrast, is almost unknown,” Yiull said.

    They have applied to the Environment Minister Nick Smith. Seeking to protect the aquifer is a legal first and if successful, will create a precedent, they say.

    Yiull said they were forced to take the action due to the threat that Tasman District Council might approve more commercial and farming water allocations in Golden Bay that could affect the water clarity of the springs.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/89717655/golden-bay-iwi-apply-for-countrys-first-water-conservation-order-for-an-aquifer

    Kaitiakitanga – what does it actually mean?

    I’ve gone through this before and imo

    kaitiakitanga is a reflection of mana. If the waterway is clean and provides abundance then visitors can be fed which increases the mana of the people and this increases the mana of the waterway – this is upwardly spiraling – more mana, more protection, more abundance, more mana etc

    If we saw waterways and water itself in this way we (and many of us already do think this) would feel shame that our waterways are so non-abundant, sick and dying – thus reflecting something about us and our mana. The exploiters don’t think this way – they see a commodity that can be exploited.

    I don’t think we will change people to see water like this until the barriers to understanding tangata whenua and the Māori worldview are listened to and understood a little. And frankly I can’t see that day being tomorrow.

    • weka 9.1

      Ae, I saw how you put it the other day, that race relations keep getting reset to zero 🙁

      When I was putting up the post last night I realised that Pākehā do have better values around water and the environment than I was giving them credit for. I might do a post on that, need to think on it some more. But I’m wondering now if those better values get subsumed (by economics) rather than them being non-existent.

      Thanks for the explanation of the relationship between kaitiakitanga and mana.

      “I don’t think we will change people to see water like this until the barriers to understanding tangata whenua and the Māori worldview are listened to and understood a little.”

      What do you think the main barriers are?

      • marty mars 9.1.1

        fear probably

        I also think many many people from every ethnicity care about the environment and water and our children and the flora and fauna – somehow we have to pull those threads out because they are imo stronger than the imposed economic and commodification matrix currently being force-fed to us. Not sure how to do it though 🙁

        • weka 9.1.1.1

          I reckon (re the threads). I’ll think on this some more. So many Pākehā have a connection with the land but the culture doesn’t enable ways to discuss that that don’t end up either being new agey or reductionist/commodified. I’m sure there is a language there somewhere, might be good to find it.

          • weka 9.1.1.1.1

            Do you know of anyone doing cross cultural work on this? I was hugely influenced in the 80s and 90s by Irihapeti Ramsden’s work on biculturalism. I did one of her workshops and it was very inclusive and encouraged Pākehā to see the positives of their own cultures as well as look at the difficult history in NZ. It was also helpful for me to see how she worked with Māori in a group that had more Pākehā in it. It was all about the relationship and feeding people’s sense of self, place, culture.

            Some of the decolonisation/anti-racism work from that time too, really helped me start to see that certain ways of thinking could be undone and put back together in a different way. A long ongoing process.

            I wonder if a similar process can be applied to the issue of land/water. Mostly I see Pākehā needing to decolonise, but that’s a pretty radical process and something like what Ramsden was going is probably more likely to succeed. Her work was radical too, but presented in ways that people could relate to.

            Robert, are you seeing this?

  9. I cannot see how water quality will get better unless we address the dairy issue. And the dairy issue is directly related to promises of continued growth, jobs, development. What is Labour saying about this? What are their plans for this? If someone says they will make the water better and they are not considering these economic/progress arguments then they are kidding themselves and us. Also how does the impact of climate change affect this? Once again if someone says we will fix this without considering what effects climate change could have on the progress of the fix then, really, it is just noise.

    • weka 10.1

      Yes, Labour’s position looks to be an improvement on National’s, but it’s not nearly enough. I will be interested to see what they do when they present their new water policy.

      I think there are two broad issues here. One is what really needs to be done (te mana o te wai). The other is what can a left wing govt do, given how much dairying there is, how reliant the economy is on it, and how easy/difficult it would be to transition local economies off industrial dairying. This is why I will argue for the most Green MPs we can get. They won’t be able to work miracles, but they can change the nature of the debate.

      • marty mars 10.1.1

        Yes the tension between what really needs to be done and what can and will be done is major. Perhaps the question of our times because it relates to CC, to everything. At some point before we are all dead maybe the two will merge – probably being a bit optimistic there – if we cannot front up to reality then we will be drinking and swimming in shit until the rivers dry up in a few years.

  10. Poission 11

    Wade-able, swimmable, drinkable: these are all standards lower than what most fish can survive at. Just because an adult human can drink it, does not mean an ecosystem can survive in it. We need higher standards than any party is promoting.

    which allows for rigorous legitimate debate of products entering the ecosystems and water supply significantly more dangerous then natural bacteria.

    It’s past time to be bold about water

  11. aerobubble 12

    New Zealand clean Green closed till 2040, when we’ll have similar standars as highly over oopulated Europe. So tourists go there for now, and when we get round to it we still wont have any point of difference on river quality.

  12. AB 13

    One more suggestion.
    End the National party-generated fiction that “nobody owns water”.
    Instead say that “everybody owns water equally”. And that’s because it is part of the Commons. And that it cannot be used commercially or degraded in any way without the permission of the public and without some form of payment to the public.

  13. Anthony Rimell 14

    Excellent article Weka.

    I fully agree that robust fora like this are the places to push forward the agenda on essential discussions such as this one on water quality. Well written, passionately argued, and gushing (excuse the pun) with essential facts.

    More and more, as the right uses nonsense jargon like ‘alternative facts’ and ‘junk science’ to dismiss real concerns we need to speak up. Louder, stronger, and in multiple places.

    which leads me to my point: I encourage us all to share this article on other sites, so it doesn’t become an echo chamber of agreement among we who are already aware. Weka has written an excellent article. Now it’s our job to get the word out wider!

  14. * thinks – If the waterways of our various south-south Pacific islands were viewed as our venous system; not the veins of the land but our personal veins, carrying our personal life blood, we could effect enormous change to how we behave…
    *realises – most people don’t respect their own body’s “waterways”/venous system, dumping toxic, low-quality stuff into them without much concern…
    *concludes – there’s far to go

  15. millsy 16

    Really. How hard is it for farmers to stop trashing our waterways. Sure they may have to pass on buying the latest Hilux this year to pay for it, but there are going to have to be sacrifices made.

  16. “It’s blatantly obvious that not only will National never do the right thing, but they are in fact taking the piss.”

    Can you back up your claim of fact?

    Smith has communicated his water policy poorly, and perhaps whatever National do on water will never be enough or ‘the right thing’ for some, but there is at least partial support of what Smith has proposed. For example:

    The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment has labelled the government’s new water quality targets as worthy but confusing.

    Commissioner Jan Wright said there were “some good things” in the policy, including around stock exclusion.

    “The document is largely a reaction to the public outcry about wadeability being a standard for freshwater, if you recall … They have moved to a focus on swimmability. The government has taken on the message that people want to go down to a river on a hot day and jump in.

    “Another thing they’ve done in it – they’ve got a map, with a colour scheme, that grades rivers in swimmability from blue to red, where blue is excellent and red is very bad. They’ve published all of those, and that’s very transparent, and that’s going to upset some of the councils.”

    On the bad side, Dr Wright said, the changes in water quality measurement were “very confusing”.

    The 90 percent target also included many waterways that no-one would swim in anyway, including rivers in very remote or very cold places, she said.

    She said the focus should instead be on the most vulnerable, or already-polluted, areas, which tended to be closer to sea level and near where people lived.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/201834550/govt-environment-watchdog-concerned-about-water-changes

    A better targeted approach sounds sensible – but water can be a moving target.

    A big question is whether ‘the right thing’ can be done with current levels of agricultural intensification or not. If not there could be bigger costs than the direct costs of cleaning up and fencing waterways.

    • “A big question is whether ‘the right thing’ can be done with current levels of agricultural intensification or not.”

      Question? You are still asking that question?

      Lordy!

      • Pete George 17.1.1

        So what is your answer? And have you costed it?

        • millsy 17.1.1.1

          A lot cheaper than having people coming down with gastro, but you arent bothered with that as long as farmers can afford a new tractor next season.

          • Pete George 17.1.1.1.1

            You’re making things up about what I’m bothered about.

            • millsy 17.1.1.1.1.1

              Well, you seem to be OK with farmers polluting our water as long as they make money.

              • You’ve made things up again with nothing to substantiate it. Some people don’t get away with that sort of behaviour here.

                • millsy

                  Do you want famers to stop polluting our water ways? Yes or no.

                  • Yes, and not just farmers. I’ve thought this for a long time.

                    I’ve supported a lot of Green environmental policy for a long time, except that some of their solutions are impractical and unrealistic.

                    Pollution from over intensification of farming – which stared long before the current Government got into office – is a major issue but without simple and quick solutions. Resolving things is complex and will take a lot of effort and time.

                    • millsy

                      But you seem to just want to let them do it beause they want to make money. Restrictions on how much crap you want put into our rivers lead to cleaner waterways. If we didnt have those restrictions, then our waterways would be dirty, simple.

                    • “But you seem to just want to let them do it beause they want to make money.”

                      Where did you get that idea from? I don’t think I’ve said or implied anything like that, so this is just another ignorant/false accusation.

                    • Macro

                      I’ve supported a lot of Green environmental policy for a long time, except that some of their solutions are impractical and unrealistic.
                      Name one you support.
                      Name one you think is impractical.

                    • I support many environmental policies, like reducing pollution, reducing fossil fuel use and reliance, reducing agricultural intensity, using private vehicle reliance, but I don’t think the speed and degree Greens want to achieve some of these things is realistic.

                      I supported the Green initiatives on home insulation. I also supported their Solar Homes policy announced in 2014 but I thought their priority was wrong, I asked about including energy saving through double glazing but Russel Norman responded “Can’t do everything at once. We did solar hot water, then insulation, now solar electricity. One step at a time.”

                      I think it makes more sense to save energy as much as possible, hence I think double glazing makes more sense as a priority over solar energy – especially in the south of the country where solar is less available when energy is most needed.

                    • Macro

                      So all those are practical solutions to environmental issues.
                      By the way you are incorrect wrt to solar in the south.
                      Germany in 2015 was the second highest installer of Solar after China installing 39,600 MW of capacity.
                      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Growth_of_photovoltaics
                      The Germans are no fools when it comes to energy and efficiency.
                      https://www.ise.fraunhofer.de/content/dam/ise/en/documents/publications/studies/recent-facts-about-photovoltaics-in-germany.pdf
                      The Latitude of Germany is around 51 degrees North. That is closer to the North Pole than Invercargill is to the South Pole (46 degrees South).
                      You mention the fact that double glazing would be a good policy. I totally agree. However the problem – as explained by Russell – is what is achievable politically. Remember that these initiatives were brought into being through MOU’s with Labour and National – not through the process of implementing policy through being in Government. There is only so much that can be achieved through that.

                      Disclaimer:
                      I worked for a time for an importer of solar hot water heating systems. There are very good systems available that will work equally as well in the south of the South Island as in the North.

                  • Do you want famers to stop polluting our water ways? Yes or no.

                    What a ridiculous question. In millsy commenting, that would invite the statement “Well, you seem to be OK with people who aren’t farmers polluting our waterways as long as they make money.”

              • AB

                “our water”
                Absolutely. If they want to pollute our water to make more money, they need to:
                1.) get our permission
                2.) give us the extra money they make (or a fair proportion of it)
                i.e. they cannot wreck OUR water for THEIR profit.
                It’s our water FFS – get your greedy damn hands off it.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 17.1.1.2

          If not there could be bigger costs than the direct costs of cleaning up and fencing waterways.

          You made this unsubstantiated assertion. How do you know there “could” be? Have you paid the slightest bit of attention to any facts while forming your opinion? What is your estimation of the benefits, for example.

          Hop to it. There’s lots of information available out there, as a simple Google search would have shown you if you’d ever done one, instead of pulling your opinion out of yawnz.

          • Pete George 17.1.1.2.1

            Don’t be pathetic.

            If dairy herd reductions were forced on farmers cutting cow numbers, say, in half, it would have major implications for rural communities and service centres, employment in the regions, there would be major flow on effects to supporting industries and regional cities, to ports, to export earnings and more.

            It doesn’t require Google to see the obvious, except perhaps for you.

            • KJT 17.1.1.2.1.1

              And maybe a few inefficient farms that are over borrowed, and too intensively reliant on high inputs, will go, making life better for those who farm for a living, not capital gains.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                That’s what the big players call “acquisition opportunities”. Petty players, not so much 😉

            • One Anonymous Bloke 17.1.1.2.1.2

              “In half”.

              They might have to convert to a different form of agriculture. Grow something other than grass! How terrible!

              It doesn’t take much to see the obvious, unless you’re a bland tiresome lazy unimaginative bore.

              • If you weren’t a bland tiresome lazy unimaginative bore you would have been able to say what could be grown in New Zealand other than grass that would mitigate the many problems a significant reduction of dairy herd numbers would cause.

                But you tend not to have any solutions so fall back on lazy attack.

            • Sacha 17.1.1.2.1.3

              Fewer cows can produce more profit. Studies have showed similar profits with smaller herds that did not require buying supplementary feed. Here’s one story: http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/farming/dairy/68144618/Rising-feed-costs-eroding-NZ-dairyings-competitive-advantage

              More importantly, the whole dairy industry needs to transition fast to exporting higher-value finished products like cheese, yoghurt, and nutraceuticals rather than cheap bulk milk powder that lets overseas companies capture most of the value chain. Govt and industry have been paying lip service but not doing enough of the actual work needed. Someone needs to crack the whip.

              • I’m aware of the studies on fewer cows being more profitable, but I don’t think that will lead to major reductions in herd sizes.

                I think that with the downturn in dairy prices some herd reductions and seeking a more profitable balance will already be happening to an extent. I’m sure that many dairy farmers will be at least looking at this. That article is from nearly two years ago.

                I don’t think transitioning to higher value products is as quick or as easy as it sounds. If it was possible and practical then it would be happening more already. But pushing for more of it makes sense.

                • Sacha

                  “If it was possible and practical then it would be happening more already.”

                  Only if you believe in the tenets of neoliberalism. Markets on their own are notorious for not acting towards overall longer-term benefit.

              • The total herd size peaked at 5,018,333 on 2014/15 and eased back to 4,997,811 in 2015/16.

                Average cows per hectare eased from a peak of 2.87 to 2.85.

                http://www.dairyatwork.co.nz/media/65690/nz-dairy-statistics-2015-16.pdf

                • Gristle

                  The white gold bonanza is over. Milk prices have hit a sort out equilibrium for the international export market. If the prices do go up then production from non-NZ sources can expand at least as easily as NZ production.

                  Fonterra has specialised in a race to the bottom as the company is structured to make more profit as the farm gate price drops.

                  Selling water overseas, instead of putting it through a cow and turning it into milk will, in time, exceed the revenue that can be generated from milk. (Don’t focus on getting barriers removed for milk, make sure you can export water.)

                  Most people don’t realise how much water a dairy farm uses.
                  A. 40,000 – 70,000 litres per milk – this happens twice a day.
                  B. 50 to 100 litres of water per day per cow – that’s another 30,000 to 100,000 litres per day.
                  C. Irrigation – say 1,200m3 per hectare per month. So on a 150h of irrigated farm that would be 6 million litres per day.

                  So far, this is the water consumption of a town of about 10,000 people.

                  Even if you charged farmers 1/100 of a cent per litre of water they use, then the majority of dairy farms would go broke. This indicates how dependent dairy is on exploiting the commons for free. And as is often the case if it’s free then it’s not valued and not looked after.

                  Change is coming.

                • Sacha

                  ‘Eased’ is a great choice of wording – much like media financial market reports where fortunes surge, soar, or soften – but never fall.

    • KJT 17.2

      And yet more totally useless obfuscation from Mr “have a bob each way” George.

    • weka 17.3

      “A big question is whether ‘the right thing’ can be done with current levels of agricultural intensification or not. If not there could be bigger costs than the direct costs of cleaning up and fencing waterways.”

      I’m with RG on this, Lordy to that question. If it’s genuine, then no, we can’t keep on with intensification if we want clean waterways (and by clean I mean ecologically sound). Cleaning up and fencing are mitigations. Necessary ones, but throwing down sawdust each time you spill oil eventually leads to a disaster no matter how good it looks at the time.

      In other words, there is nothing remotely sustainable about what we are doing and we will have to destock. And yes, there are bigger costs. However I don’t think anyone is saying get rid of dairy farms and let the farm workers and local economies rot. I think you will find that most people, including parties with actual environmental policies, believe that people should be taken care of too.

      • Sacha 17.3.1

        Nitrate cycles take so many decades that whatever we do has to be a long-term response. I similarly have confidence that people who are concerned about environments are also concerned about people. Always been my experience.

      • Robert Guyton 17.3.2

        That’s right, weka.

  17. millsy 18

    If farmers found keeping our waterways clean too expensive, perhaps they should you know, spend less money on smokes and alcohol 🙂

  18. It is an important point to note that this destruction of our waterways, the polluting by the dairy shit, the cutting down of anything around the waterway, the draining of wetlands – has all happened within our lifetime. Think about that. This has all happened within our lifetime. WE used to swim in the rivers and drink the water. WE used to fish and camp by the streams.

    WE are the ones to change this. WE can stop it. WE can and it starts with each of us remembering what it used to be like – not that bloody long ago.

    WE must DEMAND our rivers and waterways to be clean. This is a life or death situation. There is no second chances – it is time for action NOW!!!

    • That’s true, Marty – it’s within recall – if we let this slip, we are all screwed.

    • Sacha 19.2

      Yes, despite our PM’s obfuscation about it being a century in the making this problem has only taken a few decades at most to become obvious enough to demand action.

      • weka 19.2.1

        I’m starting to think that the people who don’t actually swim in the rivers shouldn’t get to have a say. I’m sure BE’s one of those that don’t. I wonder if the upper Oreti near BE’s home turf is still relatively clear of dairy.

  19. Jenny Kirk 20

    ActionStation and Choose Clean Water are two organisations now gearing up to make a public noise about this matter. Anyone can help them by emailing Laura at team@actionstation.org.nz>

  20. Andrea 21

    The Green statements look absolutely Fabulous!!! – on paper, as usual.

    And, as usual – they glide by the basics about WHO will be out there, literally risking life and limb, to monitor, advise, guide, resource and a whole bunch of other ‘boots on the ground’ stuff year after weary year.

    Not just the technicians and scientists – the field people who will need training in more than simply monitoring and measuring. The suppliers of plant material for riparian plantings. The abbatoirs for turning innocent creatures into dog tucker.

    And while everyone is screeching about Evil Dairy – please also call by at the processing plants for pulp, chickens, piggeries, intensive feedlots, recyclers, urban enterprises and other known polluters for a very long time indeed.

    Not to mention the filthy methods of human waste disposal – including dumps, toxic wastes, and the end results of eating – fat bergs, disposable wipes, plastic anythings, and poop. Plus those foaming cleansers that leave your house sparkling clean and your coastlines foaming in response.

    And the banks at the core of the problem. Any takers for dealing with the banks and their lending policies?

    Plus the purveyors of The Dream – you can have it ALL – and pass the costs to the speechless but definitely not helpless environment.

    Instead of ‘be bold’ – how about ‘boldly go where no one has gone before’? And widen the picture before the blind men insist they KNOW what the elephant looks like.

    Remember – we are ALL abusers of the water cycle and ALL very fond of our modern conveniences. (Double entendre intended.)

    • weka 21.1

      “And, as usual – they glide by the basics about WHO will be out there, literally risking life and limb, to monitor, advise, guide, resource and a whole bunch of other ‘boots on the ground’ stuff year after weary year.”

      It was a press release, you’re not going to get that kind of detail. How about you put up some evidence that the Greens glide past the realities. Because my own view is that they have some of the best developed policies in parliament and part of that is attention to detail. Plus they’re experts in understanding the interrelatedness of systems, which is why their policies are better read in conjunction with each other.

      Not sure what your point is tbh and I suspect you didn’t bother reading the post properly (or GP policy). Delahunty did refer to household pollutants.

      You don’t like the bold messaging, but I don’t see you offering an alternative. Lots of gliding criticism, but not a lot of substance. Those in the various environmental movements, including the Greens politically, are largely aware of all the issues you raise. So what’s your point exactly?

      “Remember – we are ALL abusers of the water cycle and ALL very fond of our modern conveniences. (Double entendre intended.)”

      Right, but the point here is that some of us want to do the right thing and some don’t. Where do you fit in that?

  21. Dragonz 22

    I do not think the dairy debate will trouble us much longer re water. As a consumer we will probably soon be able to vote with our wallets and end their exploitive times by buying a valid alternative.
    https://www.thinkwalden.com/in-the-wild/perfect-day-foods-milk-dairy
    Living and working in a dairy ‘rich’ area my concern is what will happen to the workers – the owners still have the resource to exploit in other ways – sharemilkers for example do not.

    Concerning the bigger picture on water, what is so wrong with user pays? If done correctly it prevents the tragedy of the commons occurring by pricing out the commonweal resource as it is exploited.

    • weka 22.1

      My problem with user pays is it treats freshwater as a commodity and basically says that if you have enough money you can mine it.

      “Living and working in a dairy ‘rich’ area my concern is what will happen to the workers – the owners still have the resource to exploit in other ways – sharemilkers for example do not.”

      Another good reason to start transitioning off industrial dairy while we still have time.

      I can tell you this, I will never eat synthetic dairy, and I’m sure I won’t be alone, so there will still be a need for dairy farmers in NZ growing for locals. Even better if they do so regeneratively.

  22. Michael 23

    The Greens have got some good ideas about water but does anyone really believe Labour will ever let them implement them (putting aside the small matter of the two actually getting enough Party Votes to form a government)? Surely, Labour’s friends in the business community will never let such fanciful ideas as having clean water for New Zealanders to swim in, drink from and otherwise enjoy, impinge their managerial preogatives to make as much money as possible, as quickly as possible, in complete disregard of externalities like polluted rivers and lakes?

    • Jenny Kirk 23.1

      Its not just the Greens who have good ideas about water, Michael – but Labour does too.
      It has no intention of not doing something proactive and immediate soon as it becomes govt – to start getting our waterways a lot cleaner – so don’t make up such ridiculous bullshit about Labour’s intentions re fresh waterways.

      ps Your comment is very typical of the lies and speculations I was told about Helen Clark by National Party supporters when she was PM – people trying out on me the potential for incorrect rumours they might float about HC. Looks like the Nats are going to try doing the same with Labour this election campaign.

      • weka 23.1.1

        Whatever Labour’s new water policy ends up being, I don’t think there is any doubt that it will be more conservative than the GP’s, and in that sense constrained by the need to look after business and jobs. Their already stated position is more conservative than the Greens’.

  23. WC1 24

    Once again Nick trys to turns fiction into fact and expects us to believe him.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Spread the Word
    If you like any article please help promote it (and the blog). Link to it on facebook and other social media, write about it anywhere or re-blog it. We’re very happy to have other people re-blog our material, all we ask is that you mention the original source and put ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    18 hours ago
  • Pronouns etc
    by The Council of Disobedient Women   John Fenaughty is a senior lecturer in the Faculty of Education and Social Work at the University of Auckland. In a recent column Fenaughty suggested that school teachers should use students’ “correct names and pronouns (e.g., he, him, they, them, she, her, etc.)” ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    18 hours ago
  • “People’s Faces” by Kate Tempest
    Heard this on Radio NZ this afternoon. Perfectly captures how I'm feeling just now.It's always good to find new music, though it would be nice to be hearing something celebratory. Even "Things Can Only Get Better" would be welcome, if it was accompanied by a thumping Labour victory. ...
    22 hours ago
  • A reflection on the British general election
    by Don Franks Like New Zealand, Britain is officially a country of equal opportunity under the rule of law, with increasing hardship for those at the bottom. When there’s an election, and the party most obviously callous towards poor people wins, decent folks are dismayed and bewildered. “What the hell ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 day ago
  • Well, crap
    UKanians went to the polls yesterday in early elections aimed at resolving the Brexit impasse. And they certainly have, delivering a huge majority to the Tories, and (barring internal rebellions of the sort which delayed Brexit) giving them the power to do whatever they want. And thanks to the UK's ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Austerity meets fresh resistance in Iran
      by Karim Pourhamzavi Mass protests are occurring across Iran, taking place in over 100 cities.  The protests have been sparked by the government’s cutting of fuel subsidies, a measure which caused fuel prices to double overnight. Mass protests are hardly new in Iran, but there is an important difference ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • Oh No! It’s a …..
    What other song could we play as the UK's political rule book gets torn up and thrown away?Video courtesy of YouTubeThis post is exclusive to Bowalley Road. ...
    2 days ago
  • Election 2019 – The Legendary Liveblog
    Legendary in my own mind, I mean.  All times are NZ, which is an hour10.00am (NZ) There's about an hour to go until the exit poll is released.  At that point, half of the British voting public will devastated, and the other half celebrating wildly.  Unless everyone is simply confused.Turnout seems ...
    2 days ago
  • Some Thoughts On Socialism As Jeremy Corbyn Loses The UK General Election.
    Forlorn Hope: When the call came down to make Corbyn unelectable, the Establishment's journalists and columnists rose to the challenge. Antisemitism was only the most imaginative of the charges levelled against the old democratic-socialist. There were many more and, sadly, they appear to have worked. Boris Johnson may not be much ...
    2 days ago
  • Cartoonist David Low’s Radical Sympathy.
    "Rendezvous" by David Low, September 1939.DUNEDIN IS THE BIRTHPLACE of, for my money, the world’s greatest cartoonist, David Low. At the height of his powers, in 1930s London, Low’s cartoons represented the visual conscience of the civilised world. His most famous cartoon, “Rendezvous”, penned a few weeks into the Second ...
    2 days ago
  • The UK has a choice as to whether it chooses to be manipulated… or not.
    If you want to study propagandist techniques, you are typically told to study Dictatorships. Not unfair, but what’s always been more interesting to me is so-called “democratic” countries and their broader information systems. Why? Because people opt for it, even as they decry “totalitarian regimes!”.. It’s quite an eye ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    3 days ago
  • Today’s secrecy legislation
    Introducing legislation which shits on the public's right to know seems to have become a daily occurrence for this government. Today's example is the Infrastructure Funding and Financing Bill. The bill establishes a framework for the establishment of "special purpose vehicles" (SPVs) to hide debt from local government balance sheets ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the Year 2019: Time to vote!
    Below is the longlist of words and phrases generated in the korero phase of Public Address Word of the Year 2019, with some editorial moderation. Now it's time to vote. As you'll doubtless be able to see, you get three ranked choices. Use your power wisely. Or frivolously, whatever.As usual, ...
    3 days ago
  • Encryption, passwords, and self-incrimination
    The University of Waikato and New Zealand Law Foundation have released a report today on the law around encryption in New Zealand. There's stuff in there about principles and values, and how proposed government policies to provide for "lawful access" by creating backdoors would destroy the trust which makes encryption ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Drawn
    A ballot for two Member's Bills was held today, and the following bills were drawn: Insurance (Prompt Settlement of Claims for Uninhabitable Residential Property) Bill (Stuart Smith) Social Security (Exemption for Ex Gratia and Compensation Payments) Amendment Bill (Willow-Jean Prime) Neither bill seems likely to be particularly controversial. This is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Bougainville votes for independence
    Earlier in the month, Bougainvilleans went to the polls in a landmark referendum to decide on whether they would remain part of Papua New Guinea or become independent. Yesterday, the results came in, with over 97% support for independence. The referendum wasn't binding - instead it means negotiations with the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Bus strikes, suspensions and solidarity
    by Daphna Whitmore This week 800 unionised bus drivers in Auckland were suspended from work after they refused to collect fares as part of a campaign of industrial action. Drivers working for Auckland’s largest bus company NZ Bus are asking for more pay and better working conditions after being offered ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • How to support after the Whakaari/White Island volcanic eruption
    As details emerge about what unfolded on Whakaari / White Island two days ago, my thoughts go out to all the families affected by this terrible event. My thoughts are also with the first responders who worked in perilous circumstances to assist and protect those affected. Both local and ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarb Johal
    3 days ago
  • Final BMG poll – nothing to see here
    BMG research have unleashed their final poll of the 2019 campaign:Westminster voting intention: CON: 41% (-)LAB: 32% (-)LDEM: 14% (-)GRN: 4% (-)BREX: 3% (-1)via @BMGResearch , 06 - 11 Dec Chgs. w/ 06 Dec That's a bit of a "Dunno why we bothered" sort of poll. "Phillip, I'm afraid I've been a ...
    3 days ago
  • Grant Robertson Spends Up Large – On The Establishment!
    Grant Keeps On Trucking: Out of the $12 billion Robertson has announced for infrastructure investment, $8 billion will be allocated to specific projects, with the balance of $4 billion held in reserve. What does it say about this Government's "transformational" ambitions that 85 percent of that $8 billion is to ...
    3 days ago
  • Boris Johnson … Hides … In a Fridge
    I am not making this up.First few lines of the Dail Mail write up:Boris Johnson's exasperated media minder swore on live TV today as the PM refused to speak to Good Morning Britain before trotting into a fridge as he started an early milkround in Yorkshire. Piers Morgan was visibly ...
    4 days ago
  • Shy Labour Voters?
    In previous elections pollsters have bemoaned the 'shy Tory' - the respondent who is so fearful of being judged as a cruel and heartless bastard by an anonymous pollster, or their spouses, workmates and friends, that they lie about their intention of voting Conservative, skewing the poll figures in Labour's ...
    4 days ago
  • Seven reasons to be wary of waste-to-energy proposals
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz I was in Switzerland recently and discovered that they haven’t ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    4 days ago
  • Reviewing the whitewash
    Back in 2015, then Ombudsman Beverley Wakem conducted a review of the OIA, Not a game of hide and seek. The "review" was a whitewash, which found no need for legislative change, and instead criticised the media and requesters - which destroyed Wakem's reputation, and undermined that of the Office ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • You Gov MRP Poll Out
    So, You Gov's MRP poll - the weird one that tries to reflect what will happen at a constituency level and which pretty much nailed the hung parliament in 2017 - is not looking too good for Labour:
    UK #GE2019 MRP seat projection:CON: 339 (-20)LAB: 231 (+20)SNP: 41 (-2)LDEM: 15 ...
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: Accountability?
    We've known about climate change for over forty years now,and it has been a major political issue for twenty. And yet fossil fuel companies have kept polluting with impunity, while government have looked the other way and twiddled their thumbs and refused to do anything because "the economy", or just ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Delusional And Irrational: The Rise Of Paranoid Politics In New Zealand.
    Sheer Loopiness: Many of those expressing bemusement at the antics of these #turnardern effacers, were convinced that they were yet another expression of the National Party’s increasingly spiteful anti-government propaganda campaign. They marvelled at the oddness of the perpetrators’ mindset and questioned the common-sense of allowing the rest of New Zealand ...
    4 days ago
  • Things to know about Whakaari/White Island
    Brad Scott, GNS Science VolcanologistThis post was originally published by GeoNet. Following the 9 December devastating eruption at Whakaari/White Island we have put together some information about the island. New Zealand’s most active volcano Whakaari/White Island is currently New Zealand’s most active volcano, it has been since an eruptive episode ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    5 days ago
  • Status quo supports status quo
    The Justice Committee has reported back on its Inquiry into the 2017 General Election and 2016 Local Elections, with a host of recommendations about how to improve our electoral systems. Some of their recommendations are already incorporate din the Electoral Amendment Bill currently before Parliament, but there's also a recommendation ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The Greens abandon NeoLiberalism
    Back in 2017, in order to make themselves "electable" in the eyes of rich people who oppose everything they stand for, the Greens signed up for NeoLiberalism, adopting a restrictive set of "Budget Responsibility Rules" which basicly prevented them from using government to make things better. Now, they're finally abandoning ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Lying about a failed war
    Since invading in 2001, the US has consistently claimed that their war in Afghanistan has been going well, even when it continued year after year after year. Of course, they were lying, and thanks to the Washington Post and the US Freedom of Information Act, we get to see just ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Artificial Intelligence and You
    How should we think about artificial intelligence and the implications that it has for our work and leisure? There are many articles on artificial intelligence and its potential impacts on jobs, and the ethics of applications. These are important topics, but I want to focus on some less discussed aspects, ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    5 days ago
  • Statistical manipulation to get publishable results
    I love data. It’s amazing the sort of “discoveries” I can make given a data set and computer statistical package. It’s just so easy to search for relationships and test their statistical significance. Maybe relationships which ...
    5 days ago
  • More lies on the Twitter (Dan Hodges edition)
    The other big story concerning Leeds Hospital is Boris Johnson's bizzare behaviour at Leeds Hospital, where he was confronted by a journalist and challenged about a four year old boy with suspected pneumonia who was left sleeping on the floor, rather than getting  abed like a sick kid would in ...
    5 days ago
  • LabourActivistPunchedMattHancock’sSPADGate
    So, for a brief period of history, it was alleged that a protester had punched Matt Hancock's SPAD (not a euphemism; special adviser) when Hancock visited Leeds Hospital.This was reported by the likes of Robert Peston and Laura Keunssberg, as well as the less credible Guido Fawkes.  It also quickly ...
    5 days ago
  • France’s anti-Zionism is anti-liberté
    by Daphna Whitmore Last week France passed a law that equates anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism. It is based on a definition of anti-Semitism that includes criticism of Israel such as: “Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Another bus lockout
    Over the past year we've seen major bus problems in Hamilton and Wellington, as drivers have sought better wages and an end to the bullshit of split shifts, which basicly see them "married to the job". And now its Auckland's turn. When NZBus's drivers planned low-level strike action of not ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: Showing us how its done
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. But those targets are insufficient. Meanwhile, Denmark is showing us how its done:Denmark’s parliament adopted a new climate law on Friday, committing to reach 70% below its 1990 emissions in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Public sector dysfunction should not be allowed to undermine freedom of information
    Another day, another piece of legislation with a secrecy clause. This time its the innocuous-seeming Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill, which (after establishing a new body and making it subject to the OIA in three different ways) includes the rapidly-becoming-standard clauses enabling it to request information from other public ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • “This is England, this knife of Sheffield steel…”
    The state of the United Kingdom is fractured, torn up, shredded. The Empire is gone, it died a long time ago. And yet, the country is still tracking with a lead in favour of the ones who play to the ingrained, class-bound division for political gain. It is a disgrace ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • CORSIA, coming soon to an airport near you
    On 27 September, Greta Thunberg addressed a crowd of 500,000 at the School Strike for Climate in Montreal, saying: “You are a nation that is allegedly a climate leader. And Sweden is also a nation that is allegedly a climate leader. And in both cases, it means absolutely nothing. Because ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • Cloaking hate speech and fake news in the right to free expression.
    It should be obvious by now but let’s be clear: The same folk who regularly traffic in disinformation, misinformation and “fake news” are also those who most strongly claim that their freedom of expression rights are being violated when moves are made to curb hate speech (as opposed to protected ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • The Physics (and Economics, and Politics) of Wheelchairs on Planes
    Michael Schulson When Shane Burcaw flies on an airplane, he brings along a customized gel cushion, a car seat, and about 10 pieces of memory foam. The whole arsenal costs around $1,000, but for Burcaw it’s a necessity. The 27-year-old author and speaker — who, alongside his fiancée, Hannah ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • To Advance Civil Rights, Oppose Transgender Extremism
    We are very pleased to publish this submission is from Lucinda Stoan. She is a social justice activist, mother, and educator, based in Washington State in the  US.   This detailed and comprehensive source-linked overview of trans issues and what is at stake will be useful for many people, especially in ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Faafoi should be fired
    Newshub last night reported that Broadcasting Minister Kris Faafoi had apparently promised to help out a mate with an immigration issue. While its normal for people to approach MPs for assistance in this area, when you're a Minister, the rules are different: as the Cabinet Manual says, Ministers must "at ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Adrian Orr – The Reserve Bank’s Revolutionary Governor?
    New Zealand's Underarm Banker: It bears recalling that the “independence” of the Reserve Bank Governor was for decades held up by neoliberal capitalists as the most compelling justification for passing the Reserve Bank Act. Interesting, is it not, how the ruling class’s support for the Bank’s independence lasted no longer than ...
    1 week ago
  • Driving Us Up The Poll.
    Rubbish In, Rubbish Out: Put all this together, and it’s difficult to avoid the conclusion that anyone who responds positively to a pollster’s request to “answer a few questions” is just ever-so-slightly weird. Desperately lonely? Some sort of psephological train-spotter? Political party member primed to skew the poll for or against ...
    1 week ago
  • Jordan Williams, Colin Craig podcast series announced
    “Free at last, Free at last, Thank God almighty we are free at last.” ― Martin Luther King Jr. A long and bitter court feud between former Conservative Party leader Colin Craig and Jordan Williams has been settled, with an apology and compensation from Williams. On Tuesday, Craig sent out ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    1 week ago
  • How plant-based meat is stretching New Zealand’s cultural and legal boundaries
    Samuel Becher, Victoria University of Wellington and Jessica C Lai, Victoria University of Wellington Earlier this year, the New Zealand-based pizza chain Hell Pizza offered a limited-edition “Burger Pizza”. Its customers weren’t told that the “meat” was plant-based. Some customers complained to the Commerce Commission, which enforces consumer law in ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Scientific integrity requires critical investigation – not blind acceptance
    Some people seem to want to close down any critical discussion of the current research into the relationship between water fluoride and child IQ. They appear to argue that claims made by researchers should not be open to critical review and that the claims be accepted without proper consideration ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The shameful reality
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. Meanwhile, Climate Action Tracker has the shameful reality: those targets are insufficient:While New Zealand is showing leadership by having passed the world’s second-ever Zero Carbon Act in November 2019, under ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • More secrecy
    The government introduced a Racing Industry Bill today. As an urban who horse racing as pointless-to-cruel, and gambling as a tax on stupidity and/or hope, this isn't normally a bill which would interest me in the slightest, beyond grumpiness at more government money for a dying industry. But there is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Unlikely online bully, Liam Hehir
    Check. Check. One, two, three, four. Is this thing ON? Hello readers, I logged in last night (yeah, it’s been a while) to mark THE END of the landmark legal case, Jordan Williams v Colin Craig, which (gulp) reached The Supreme Court, in which New Zealand’s most-defamed man was suing the politician he ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    1 week ago
  • The Birth Of Israel: Wrong At The Right Time.
    Before The Birth: Israel’s most fervent supporters set their clocks ticking in Biblical times. They cite the kingdoms of David and Solomon as proof that, in the words of the Exodus movie’s theme-song: “This land is mine.” The majority of Israel’s backers, however, start their clocks in 1933 – the year Adolf ...
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the Year 2019: Korero phase
    In an unreliable, strange and confusing world, Public Address is proud to present a measure of comfort and stability by annually asking everyone what words or phrases sum up the year that's been – and then giving some of them consumer goods as prizes for being clever or simply lucky.Well, ...
    1 week ago
  • Generalist to specialist
    Both my parents are pretty handy – and they seem to have the right tools for most jobs in the garage and they know how to fix practically anything. A similar story could be told about their generation’s experience in the workforce – being a generalist was not unusual and ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • A “coincidence”
    When it was revealed that NZ First had tried to enrich itself from public office via the Provoncial Growth Fund, the Prime Minister assured us that everything was OK as Shane Jones, the Minister responsible for the fund, had recused himself. Except it seems that that recusal came very late ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day, and probably the last one of the year. After the marathon of the End of Life Choice Act, most of the bills up for debate today are uncontentious. First up is the second reading of Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill. This will be followed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Worse than I thought
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has reported back on the government's odious and tyrannical control orders bill. As expected, the fraudulent select committee process has made no significant changes (partly because they couldn't agree, but mostly because it was a stitch-up from the start, with no intention of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The cannabis bill and the referendum
    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • More bad faith
    Last year, the government announced it was ending offshore oil exploration by no longer issuing new permits. The idea was that the industry would then die off as permits expired. Except almost immediately the government revealed its bad faith, by saying they would extend permits and alter conditions to keep ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
    The government has said it will ban foreign donations to political parties and candidates, and will be introducing legislation to be passed under all-stages urgency this afternoon. While I agree with the goal, I don't see a particular case for urgency, unless the government is concerned about a flood of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
    The government introduced the Education and Training Bill to Parliament yesterday. Its a massive bill, which replaces both existing Education Acts, as well as various other bits of legislation (including some which are still proceeding through the House). I'll leave the serious analysis to teachers and people who actually know ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Bite-sized learning
    Amelia SharmanThere’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to micro-credentials, those bits of bite-sized learning that can help workers stay on top of technological change.  What’s a micro-credential? While definitions vary, micro-credentials can be understood as short courses that allow people to learn new skills or have an existing competency recognised. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • anti-vaxxers in a measles epidemic: so many ways to be untruthful
    “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa over the past twenty-four hours. “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
    Professors Janet Hoek and Richard Edwards, Emeritus Professor Phil Gendall, Jude Ball, Dr Judith McCool, Anaru Waa, Dr Becky Freeman Recent media reports have presented conflicting evidence on youth vaping in NZ. While some NZ school principals report concerns about increasing vaping on school grounds and confiscating vapes, ASH Year ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago

  • Record export highs picked for primary sector
    Sustained high growth in primary industry exports looks set to continue over the next two years with strong prices predicted for farmers, fishers, growers and rural communities. Minister of Agriculture and Minister of State for Trade and Export Growth Damien O’Connor today released the latest Situation and Outlook report for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • New partnership to boost screen sector job opportunities
    Auckland’s growing screen sector is the catalyst for a new partnership between the Ministry of Social Development and Auckland’s economic development agency Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED). The launch today at FilmFX in Henderson, is to celebrate the partnership which looks to capitalise on the social and economic development opportunities ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • A minute’s silence for Whakaari White Island victims
    A minute’s silence will be observed at 2.11pm on Monday 16 December in honour of the victims of the Whakaari White Island eruption, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has confirmed. “Wherever you are in New Zealand, or around the world, this is a moment we can stand alongside those who have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • NZ to help fund fight against measles in the Pacific region
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced New Zealand will contribute NZ$1 million of funding towards the joint United Nations Fund for Children (UNICEF) and World Health Organisation (WHO) Pacific Regional Action Plan for Measles.   “Prevention through vaccination is the most effective way of avoiding illness and a costly health emergency. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand remembers Sir Peter Snell
    New Zealand is today remembering one of our true sporting heroes, triple Olympic gold medal winner Sir Peter Snell. “He was a legend, here and around the world,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “Our thoughts are with Sir Peter’s wife Miki and their family.” “Sir Peter is recognised as New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • PM congratulates Boris Johnson on election victory
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson on his election victory.  “New Zealand and the United Kingdom are close friends and despite our distance we are strongly connected by our history and people,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “I look forward to continuing to work with Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Building a platform for the future of rail
    The Government has released its long term vision for a sustainable 21st Century rail network that gets our cities moving, connects our regions and gets more freight off the roads.   Deputy Prime Minister and State Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters said the Government is committed to rebuilding New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Prime Minister statement Whakaari White Island recovery operation
    I want to start by acknowledging the families who have experienced such grief and such loss since the extraordinary tragedy on Monday. Today was all about reuniting them with their loved ones. We've just come from the airport where many of them were gathered and in amongst what you can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand medical specialists to provide further support to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today announced further support for Samoa’s longer term needs as it continues to respond to a devastating measles epidemic. “Samoa’s health system has experienced massive strain in the wake of the measles epidemic. The volume of patients needing care during this outbreak, and the number of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Discounted electric-bikes offered to public sector workers
    Discounted electric bikes will be offered up to public sector staff across the country as part of the Government’s work to reduce transport emissions and support healthier transport options.  Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter officially launched the new initiative at Wellington Hospital today.  “The Government has negotiated bulk-purchase ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Australia and New Zealand confirm joint bid for FIFA Women’s World Cup
    The Australian and New Zealand Governments today launch an historic joint bid to bring the FIFA Women’s World Cup to the Southern Hemisphere for the first time. Australian Minister for Youth and Sport, Richard Colbeck and New Zealand Minister for Sport and Recreation Grant Robertson will announce the bold campaign, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Blackwater gold mine gets PGF boost
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) has approved a $15 million loan to help re-establish a gold mining operation at Blackwater Gold Mine, near Reefton, Rural Communities Minister and local MP Damien O’Connor announced at an event on the West Coast today. “This is great news for the Coast that could ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Papakāinga model inspires whānau well-being
    Papakāinga model inspires whānau well-being A housing project by Kohupātiki whānau in Hastings is an outstanding example of a Māori-led housing initiative that can reduce financial pressure and reconnect whānau to their whakapapa says the Minister for Māori Development Hon Nanaia Mahuta.  Minister Mahuta officially opened the Aroha Te Rangi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government provides more funding for major community wetland restoration project
    Restoration efforts for a significant wetland in the Hawke’s Bay are getting more support announced Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage. “Wetlands are vital to healthy landscapes and ecosystems. They function as nature’s ‘kidneys’, filtering and protecting water quality, acting as nature’s sponges after rain and are home to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Housing First to help Nelson Tasman homeless
    Nelson has today seen the launch of Housing First Nelson Tasman. Today’s launch marks the expansion of the Government’s homelessness programme, Housing First, to the top of the South Island. “Housing First is a proven programme that puts people who are experiencing homelessness and multiple, high and complex needs into ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New funding to support Environment Centres working for sustainable local solutions
    New Government funding announced today will help communities make a difference in tackling environmental issues Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage announced in Hawkes Bay today. The Ministry for the Environment’s Community Environment Fund is dedicating $243,101 to growing the capacity and capability of the Environment Hubs Aotearoa’s (EHA) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government takes bite out of loan sharks
    The days of vulnerable consumers falling victim to loan sharks, truck shops and other predatory lenders are numbered, following the Credit Contracts Legislation Amendment Bill passing its third reading tonight. “Too many Kiwis are being given loans that are unaffordable and unsuitable, trapping them in debt and leaving their families ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand safer as Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders Bill) becomes law
    A Bill that prevents terrorism and supports the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas has passed its third reading, Justice Minister Andrew Little says. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill is a carefully targeted response to manage the risk posed by a small number of New Zealanders who have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Foreign Minister and Pacific Peoples Minister to visit Samoa
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio will travel to Samoa on Friday, where New Zealand medical teams are helping Samoa respond to an outbreak of measles. “New Zealand has been working closely with the Government of Samoa and offering our assistance from the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Pastoral Care Code will support tertiary students in 2020
    The Government has changed the law to improve student safety and welfare in university halls of residence and other student accommodation. The Education (Pastoral Care) Amendment Bill passed its third reading this afternoon and details of an interim Code of Practice setting out the Government’s expectations of tertiary providers have also been released. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New infrastructure funding tool to build housing developments faster
    A new tool to help councils fund and finance infrastructure could mean some housing developments happen a decade earlier than currently planned, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said today. “This new tool, developed by the Government in partnership with industry and high-growth councils, will allow councils to access private debt ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Vision to unite the primary sector launched today
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has welcomed the release of a bold new vision for the country’s vital food and fibre sector. “I’m delighted that New Zealand’s major farmer and grower organisations are today supporting the Primary Sector Council’s vision – Fit for a Better World,” he said. “The international consumers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ congratulates PNG and Autonomous Bougainville Government on referendum
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has congratulated the Government of Papua New Guinea and the Autonomous Bougainville Government for completing a well-conducted referendum on the future political status of Bougainville. “New Zealand supported the referendum process by providing technical advice through the New Zealand Electoral Commission and leading a Regional Police ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Next steps for Upper North Island logistics
    In light of Cabinet’s position that freight operations on prime land in downtown Auckland are no longer viable, the Government will now embark on a short work programme to enable decision-making in the first half of next year, Associate Transport Minister Shane Jones says. Minister Jones is today releasing the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Surgical mesh restorative justice report received
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter has received the report back from a surgical mesh restorative justice process undertaken by Victoria University. The process heard stories, either in person or online submission, from more than 600 people affected by surgical mesh. “The report made for heart-breaking and confronting reading,” says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai a milestone for drinking water safety
    The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai , introduced to Parliament today, is a milestone for drinking water safety in New Zealand and will help improve environmental outcomes for urban waterways, rivers and lakes.  “This is a breakthrough for New Zealanders in terms of providing safe drinking water throughout ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech to new direction for criminal justice reform announcement
    Kia ora koutouE ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā matā wakaTēnā koutou katoaHaere ngā, moe maiKoutou ma ngā Rangatira Ko Anaru ahauKo au te Minita mo ngā TureHe Honore tino nui kei roto I ahau No reira tena koutou katoa Today, we are releasing two reports that are the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New direction for criminal justice reform
    The Government is looking to turn around the long-term challenges of criminal justice by taking a new approach to break the cycle of offending to ensure there are fewer victims of crime. Justice Minister Andrew Little released two reports today, Turuki! Turuki! from Te Uepū Hāpai I te Ora, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New law sets up $300m Venture Capital Fund
    New Zealand firms expanding beyond the start-up phase are set for more support after today’s passage of the Venture Capital Fund Bill, Associate Finance Minister David Parker said. The Bill, which establishes a $300 million Venture Capital Fund, puts in place a key initiative of the Wellbeing Budget’s economic package. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand’s National Statement to COP25
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira mā. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Señora Presidenta, Excellencies, Delegates. International action A common thread that runs through the Paris Agreement is the commitment we have made to each other to do what we can to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • $12 billion in extra infrastructure investment
    The Government is lifting capital investment to the highest level in more than 20 years as it takes the next step to future-proof New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced $12 billion of new investment, with $8 billion for specific capital projects and $4 billion to be added to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Strong economy, careful spending gives $12bn of surpluses
    The Government is forecast to run $12 billion worth of surpluses across the four years to 2023/24 as the economy continues to grow. The surpluses will help fund day-to-day capital requirements each year. These include fixing leaky hospitals, building new classrooms to cover population growth and take pressure off class ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Priorities for 2020 Wellbeing Budget outlined
    Budget 2020 will continue the Coalition Government’s focus on tackling the long-term challenges facing New Zealand while also investing to future-proof the economy. When the Government took office in 2017 it was left with crumbling infrastructure, severe underinvestment in public services, degraded rivers and lakes, a housing crisis and rising ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Minister welcomes data-rich coastline mapping tool
    The Minister responsible for the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 (te Takutai Moana Act 2011), Andrew Little has welcomed the launch of an online geospatial tool that provides data-rich, dynamic coastline maps that will significantly boost research and evidence-gathering under the Act. Te Kete Kōrero a Te ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Chief Victims Advisor reappointed for a further two years
    The Chief Victims Advisor to Government Dr Kim McGregor, QSO, has been reappointed in her role for a further two years. Dr McGregor has held the role since it was established in November 2015. She provides independent advice to government on how to improve the criminal justice system for victims. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand tsunami monitoring and detection system to be established
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Civil Defence Minister Peeni Henare have today announced the deployment of a network of DART (Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami) buoys. “New Zealand and the Pacific region are particularly vulnerable to natural disasters. It is vital we have adequate warning systems in place,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • DART Buoys Announcement
    DART Buoys Announcement Aotea Wharf, 9.30am 11 December 2019   Acknowledgements Acknowledgements to Minister for Civil Defence Hon Peeni Henare also here today. White Island It is with regret that this event shadows the tragic natural disaster two days ago. The volcanic eruptions on White Island have claimed 5 lives, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Final steps for racing industry reform
    Racing Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Racing Industry Bill in parliament today. This is the second of two Bills that have been introduced this year to revitalise New Zealand’s racing industry. “Our domestic racing industry has been in serious decline.  The Government is committed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Funding to promote New Zealand Sign Language initiatives
    Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, is pleased to announce that $291,321 is to be awarded to national and local community initiatives to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). “New Zealand is one of the few countries  in the world where Sign Language is an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • How New Zealand defines and recognises veterans
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced today the Coalition Government’s initial response to work completed by the independent statutory body, the Veterans’ Advisory Board. “When Professor Ron Paterson completed his review of the Veterans’ Support Act in 2018, he made a number of recommendations, including one which I referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago