Why we save rivers

Written By: - Date published: 7:15 am, August 29th, 2019 - 47 comments
Categories: Conservation, sustainability - Tags: , , , , ,

The Minister for the Environment, David Parker, announced yesterday that an application from Westpower to divert the Waitaha River for hydo-electric power generation had been declined. Forest and Bird were delighted with the decision.

It’s a very good decision for a number of reasons.

One is that the conservation estate should be off limits for development unless there are compelling conservation reasons. We’re still struggling to maintain and restore native ecosystems and species, and every new road brings in more problems. 



There are cultural and spiritual values here too. We should keep some places in nature for their own sake, not our uses. The shift in mindset from nature being a resource, to nature having rights is challenging for many New Zealanders, but it’s the one that will avert climate catastrophe.

Mainstream responses to climate change are now pushing us hard towards green tech BAU, but this is still an extractive, exploitation-based paradigm, a lesser evil that makes us feel better and enables us to ignore the deeper changes needed. It’s useful as a transition but it’s not sustainable in the sense of the primary criteria being that the system regenerates itself.

Nature can absorb a certain degree of non-regenerative components in a system, but these shouldn’t be the base of the system nor excessive in use. If the Waitaha were dammed and the West Coast economy grown, which is the next river that would be damned to continue that growth?

This is the essential problem with exponential growth that New Zealand, and the whole world, is grappling with as we hit the limits of nature. We still tend to see the environment as lots of unused or under-utilised resources, and this view leads to extractive, depleting approaches.

When looking at how to meet human needs, instead of ‘how much can we get away with taking?’ we can start with ‘how do the natural systems of this place already work?’ (nature is resilient and regenerative by default). We can then ask ‘how can we fit into those systems so they continue to regenerate?’

Chopping a river in half, and reducing its flow by up to 85%, is a big fail in those terms. It stems from the world view that leads inevitably to mass extinctions and runaway climate change, because ignoring the limits of nature produces bad design.

Photo – LawrieM

Ad pointed out the economic implications for the West Coast communities: that Westpower are big employers, that Coasters need better paid jobs than tourism is offering, that monolithic power generating companies are sucking the lifeblood from us. We’ve been hearing these arguments from the traditional left for a long time, and this is the new greenwashed version of jobs before environment. There is no good reason that we can’t meet human needs and protect nature. 



Coasters being paid low wages is a social justice issue and exploiting nature won’t solve that, it just keeps a game of musical chairs going. Wasn’t tourism supposed to solve this problem? Never mind that moving to near zero carbon is going to require massive change to that industry, a conversation we’ve barely begun. Time we started creating sustainable economies and the beauty here is that if we start with a conservation and regenerative ethic, then the jobs created will be more resilient and less impactful. Inherent in that is a fair wage because social and environmental justice go hand in hand.



Monolithic power companies come from neoliberal, money-grabbing, trickle-down theories. As others have pointed out, there is plenty of scope for wind power on the Coast. Best case scenario is to create generation systems that are quake and climate resilient and that feed into the local economy.

While I think there is probably potential for small scale, local hydro generation in specific places in NZ, I think we are past being able to enslave rivers simply in the pursuit of more growth. The problem is the growth itself coupled with the idea that somehow life will end if humans don’t keep expanding, when the truth is exactly the opposite.

 

Postscript: Speaking of conservation, now that we have a somewhat less neoliberal government perhaps we can take a long hard look at the Department of Conservation and why it is aligned with and actively supports development within the conservation estate.

In return for the concession, Westpower would have paid DoC a market fee set at 6 per cent of gross revenue annually.

Photo – Andrew Buglass

47 comments on “Why we save rivers ”

  1. tc 1

    We have sufficient sustainable generation already. What we don't have is a robust well maintained network thanks to the Bradford 'reforms'.

    Its a distribution and political issue involving an aluminum smelter.

    Auckland cbd got a second feed some 15 years after the 97 blackout…..if that’s market efficiency something is clearly not working.

    • Andre 1.1

      Well, no, looking at how much electricity is coming from Huntly and other fossil-fired power stations, no we don't have sufficient sustainable generation. We have a huge number of sustainable generation schemes (that don't affect the conservation estate) that have been consented, but aren't getting built in this time of flat demand because the economics don't stack up.

      So what we have is a lack of will to make whatever combination of regulatory, structural, taxation, and whatever other changes needed to build the new sustainable generation facilities enabling the closure of fossil generators.

      One of those possible changes is indeed taking a cold clear look at how Tiwai Point really fits into the national interest, and how to help Southland through the transition following its closure. But the coming wave of electric transport will still require new generation beyond freeing up Manapouri's output.

      • weka 1.1.1

        Hence my point about growth.

      • fustercluck 1.1.2

        If you want electric cars AND want to stop burning coal, the only practical solution is nuclear. Pebble bed reactors and thorium salt reactors do not have the same potential for disaster as water-cooled reactors.

        Even lefty icons are beginning to see the light. Michale Moore's new movie "Planet of the Humans" sheds light on the fallacies of wind generation, battery & solar panel production, etc.

        If NZ got rid of the smelter and invested in safer, low residue nuclear technology, we would have the energy economy solved for generations.

        If we continue to defile the environment with wind farms (that consume huge amounts of fossil fuel and mining resources to develop and have very short service lives) and insist on current EV technology similarly burdened with Earth-destroying battery technology, we will contribute far more to environmental degradation worldwide.

        I personally think that continuing to upgrade NZ's vehicle fleet with highly efficient internal combustion vehicles is a far better and more practical step to be taken as opposed to subsidising EV technology dependant upon vast mining of rare earth minerals for batteries with short service lives, etc.

        And I agree that ditching the smelter is the only sane way forward for Manapouri's power resource.

        • Andre 1.1.2.1

          New Zealand has such an abundance of renewable capacity I'd be astonished if we ever got to the point of having nukes feeding electricity into our grid. Even if small modular reactors start getting produced in huge quantities elsewhere in the world. I just can't see them being cost competitive with wind and solar, where costs for new schemes are going under USD0.03/kWhr. But I'm picking if the world ever gets serious about going zer-carbon, then shipping will go to small modular nukes, which are ideal for providing steady power in the range of 10MW to 100MW, exactly what a ship requires.

          As far as rare-earths goes, there's a ton of R&D going into ways to eliminate their use in motors and generators. See here, or here.

          There's also a lot of effort going into eliminating cobalt from batteries. Tesla has been pretty successful, getting theirs down to around 3% cobalt, where competitors are above 10% (as were Tesla's early efforts). There's also others looking at alternative chemistries that are completely free of stuff like cobalt, such as lithium-sulfur batteries, or further down the track, room temp sodium sulfur batteries.

        • JohnP 1.1.2.2

          It's not just the cost of building a nuclear power plant or two, which would easily power the whole country – there's the additional cost of the surrounding industry required to maintain, supply and keep them safe – which given our location would need to be in the country.

          It's cheap, if you look in terms of power produced – but expensive when you consider everything else that's needed to produce the power.

          And that's before we get to where you put a nuclear power station in a country that's geologically active and the most inland point is about 120km away from the sea in Otago.

          • fustercluck 1.1.2.2.1

            Pebble bed reactors do not require the same kind of infrastructure as breeder reactors (used to produce power plus material for bombs).

        • Craig H 1.1.2.3

          Agreed in world terms, although I think NZ could just dump the aluminium smelter and that would go far enough with solar, wind and existing hydroelectric.

    • Dukeofurl 1.2

      "Auckland cbd got a second feed some 15 years after the 97 blackout"

      Thats not true , Auckland always had 3, they put an extra one in from Mt Roskill soon after and the tunnel from Penrose you mention came was finished in 2000 . Not 15 yrs as you claim

  2. vto 2

    If you want to limit the incentives for DOC to turn the conservation estate into a gigantic business resource then the income that activity generates for DOC needs to be wiped.

    I see it is pointed out that DOC would have taken 6% of gross revenue. My own business interests with DOC involve them taking 7% of gross revenue.

    Anyone in business will know that taking a 6-7% slice off the top like that is massive. It is in fact more than most businesses operating in the DOC estate would make in profit… Just let that sink in for a bit.

    DOC may as well own all the businesses in the DOC estate, such is the massive return it gets.

    This needs urgent cancellation. Otherwise the incentives will remain running against what you are trying to achieve.

    • Dukeofurl 2.1

      So you want free acess – no way. Just pay up.

      • weka 2.1.1

        Tying concession fees to profit is clearly about revenue generation for DOC rather than simply about fairness of commercial access. Looks like a clear conflict of interest given DOC are going involved in consent processes for development with National Parks.

        This is why people have been so dismayed at DOC giving the go ahead to industrial projects. It doesn't make sense for an org whose primary objective is conservation. Unless you are neoliberal and believe that conservation should be paid for by conservation generating its own funding (which is daft).

      • vto 2.1.2

        No that is not what I said, try reading better, egg

        • Dukeofurl 2.1.2.1

          "6% of gross revenue. "

          Do you know how franchises work ? You are getting off lightly. If you are paying yourself , thats before profit. Do you know what UBER charges.

          The concession is based on total revenue , as it should be . It baffles me why 6% is such a burden , if its not a great business , it is what it is.

          No reason the taxpayers support smaller less popular business who USE conservation land to make money

          • vto 2.1.2.1.1

            yeah yeah I know all that…. but it wasn't the point. The point was that DOC is incentivised to industrialise the estate by this structure.

            And this structure is about money-making. It is not about cost recovery, or any such thing like that. If it was about cost recovery fees would be a flat rate covering time by staff and some small overhead only.

            It is solely about money-making from the estate. = problem

            • Dukeofurl 2.1.2.1.1.1

              Industrialising it , that would fees of 12-18%

              Its only 5c in every dollar. How much do you pay for places that book your service for tourists ? 15 or 20%?

            • weka 2.1.2.1.1.2

              Vto, are all concessions now charged at a % rather than flat fees? Do you know when that happened?

      • KJT 2.1.3

        Individuals should have free access to the conservation estate and facilities. After all, we pay for it.

        Businesses being allowed to restrict access or having sole rights to any part, is simply, wrong.

  3. vto 3

    weka, a stat on the amount of revenue generated by commercial activity would be useful. Other useful associated stats would also include the number of concessions related to that revenue, by region, and the profit made by those concession holders.

    I would wager that the businesses make less than DOC out of commercial activity in the DOC estate…. and that is the front page headline… the headline that may make the politicians take notice ….

    • weka 3.1

      The DOC revenue should be available somewhere? Or OIA request? Might be worth someone looking on Newsroom, they do good coverage of issues like this. Or Charlie Mitchell.

  4. vto 4

    How much does a chopper cost per hour?

    How many of them are operating right now in the DOC estate? There are about 50 in Franz alone.

    Take that number and multiply it by 7%.

    It will surprise.

    • KJT 4.1

      Once upon a time, choppers were not allowed on most conservation land.

      A clear example of commercial interests being allowed to override conservation values.

      • Dukeofurl 4.1.1

        How many tourists came to NZ back then and now they are all headed to the South Island.

        Once I remember a small turbo prop landing at MT Cook airfield, and no one could imagine what Queenstown has become.

    • Dukeofurl 4.2

      Ahh that your real gripe

      Too much competition , you want numbers reduced so prices rise.

      • weka 4.2.1

        Vto has clearly stated his position and concerns and clarified them. If you start making shit up about people's points you'll be out. Don't start flame wars under my posts.

      • bwaghorn 4.2.2

        It would be a great way to ut the carbon emmisions caused be tourism. Make it so dare on the wealthy come here. Not very socialist if me but fuck it if tourism was cut to 2 million visits a year it would be much better for all except maybe the low paid staff servicing the masses.

        • weka 4.2.2.1

          Cutting mass tourism seems inevitable to me. Even the tourism industry knows this although they don't like to talk about it.

          I'd want NZer access to conservation land to be protected somehow.

  5. Ad 5

    Here's the full Assessment of Effects if anyone's interested, with maps and facts and actual qualified analysis and stuff:

    http://www.westpower.co.nz/news/article/application-concessions-and-assessment-effects

    Support from Conservation Board, support from iwi, support from DoC, support from regulators.

    It's Minister Parker alone who killed this job.

  6. bwaghorn 6

    At only 12000 homes worth of power it's a no brainer to not do it .

    • Matiri 6.1

      There's also Trustpower's Arnold scheme which is already consented, at Dobson which is just 30 minutes drive away. At 46MW more than twice the size of this Waitaha scheme. Trustpower haven't done anything with it because the economics don't stack up at the moment.

      • mac1 6.1.1

        In Parliament today, Minister Wood replied to Maureen Pugh that the Waitaha scheme was rated at 20 Mw, but in NZ there was another 3 Gw which had been consented but not yet built, and Waitaha was therefore not needed.

    • Ad 6.2

      That's Greymouth and surrounding townships covered forever, no more coal fires to stay warm.

  7. Stuart Munro. 7

    Waitaha had some merit, from a generation perspective, being on the wet side of the main divide, unlike the other perennially depleted lakes. It's lovely country though, mildly goated and dotted with ultramafics here and there – I carried rocks for a geologist there back in the day.

    The argument was rather optimistic though – DoC should have got 60% of the earnings, not 6%. And, although I'm sure there are plenty of construction jobs, assuming irresponsible government didn't hand out work permits like sweeties to all and sundry, the long term jobs would be no more than the Waitaki power dams provide – a mere handful.

    • Ad 7.1

      A handful of $100k jobs is all you heed on the West Coast to flow a lot of service jobs beyond.

      • Stuart Munro. 7.1.1

        Not sure I agree with that – but it has all the hallmarks of a modest scheme appropriate to local needs. Near Dunedin we have the similar sized Waipori scheme, which proved a very sensible piece of work for the DCC – until it had to be protected from scavenging privateers. How those thieving motherfuckers escape imprisonment is a mystery to me.

  8. Graeme 8

    The Coast is sitting on what may be a major geothermal resource. In a geological borehole at Whataroa,

    "At 630m deep they discovered water hot enough to boil. Such temperatures would typically be found at depths greater than 3km"

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/the-country/news/article.cfm?c_id=16&objectid=11858291

    GNS is currently doing work to quantify the resource

    https://www.gns.cri.nz/Home/News-and-Events/Media-Releases/geothermal-potential

    There's a bit of geothermal use on the Coast already, Westland Produce have quite large heated glasshouse producing eggplant and chilies year round, bit in the link above, and Gloriavale are evidently looking into geothermal energy (they are right on the fault)

  9. gsays 9

    Great post Weka, thanks for the thought provoking opinion.

    I am intrigued by the tensions that arise around the hydro electric schemes vs conservation.

    I am aware of Derrick Jensen and his endgame thesis. Seeing it as his duty to allow fish to return to their spawning grounds, by destroying dams if need be.

    Contrasting this is our proud boast as a country with a high % of renewable electricity generation.

    Energy conservation has to be part of the answer along with the sea change away from biggering and biggering.

    Making it easier and more equitable for dwellings to generate power and feed to the grid.

    This probably means nationalizing the power companies and undoing Bradfords perverse 'reforms'.

    • weka 9.1

      thanks gsays. I'm with Jensen on this, although I don't have a good sense of our equivalent of the salmon run and its critical role in the ecologies of those watersheds. Eels are affected here, but their roles are more subtle. I'd love to know if anyone is writing about NZ in that way.

      Decentralising seems a no brainer to me when looking at the Coast. I was disappointed to see even Forest and Bird talking about the national grid as if it was resilient and future proofed. The first thing to go when the Alpine Fault shifts will be the SI power supply. If that happens in the middle of winter, then the Coast will be well served by decentralised systems backed up by the grid for when it gets restored. We learned this from Chch. It's even more important when we consider that the Coast will infrastructure damage that we've never had to deal with in NZ before.

      And in that conservation.

      Bradford has a lot to answer for.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Government improves mass arrival management
    The Government has strengthened settings for managing a mass arrival, with the passing of the Immigration (Mass Arrivals) Amendment Bill today.  “While we haven’t experienced a mass arrival event in New Zealand, it is an ongoing possibility which would have a significant impact on our immigration and court systems,” Immigration ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Super Fund to get more investment opportunities
    Finance Minister Nicola Willis has welcomed the passage of legislation giving the New Zealand Superannuation Fund a wider range of investment opportunities. The New Zealand Superannuation and Retirement Income (Controlling Interests) Amendment Bill passed its third reading in Parliament today. “The bill removes a section in the original act that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Crown and iwi settle three decades of negotiations
    Three decades of negotiations between iwi and the Crown have been settled today as the Whakatōhea Claims Settlement Bill passes its third reading in Parliament, Treaty Negotiations Minister Paul Goldsmith says. “While no settlement can fully compensate for the Crown’s past injustices, this settlement will support the aspirations and prosperity ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    24 hours ago
  • New Zealand to support PNG landslide response
    New Zealand will support Papua New Guinea’s response to the devastating landslide in Enga Province, Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Judith Collins have announced.   “Ever since learning of the horrendous landslide on Friday, New Zealand has been determined to play our part in assisting Papua New Guinea’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government to consult on regulation of shooting clubs and ranges
      The Government is consulting New Zealanders on a package of proposals for simple and effective regulation of shooting clubs and ranges, Associate Minister of Justice, Nicole McKee announced today.   “Clubs and ranges are not only important for people learning to operate firearms safely, to practice, and to compete, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Successful New Caledonia repatriation winds up, need for dialogue remains
    Over 300 people have been successfully flown out of New Caledonia in a joint Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) and New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) operation.   As of today, seven New Zealand government aircraft flights to Nouméa have assisted around 225 New Zealanders and 145 foreign nationals ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Minister to Singapore for defence, technology talks
    Defence and Science, Innovation and Technology Minister Judith Collins departs for Singapore tomorrow for defence and technology summits and meetings. First up is the Asia Tech X Singapore Summit, followed by the Five Power Defence Arrangements Defence Ministers Meeting and wrapping up with the Shangri-La Dialogue for Defence Ministers from ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Major investment in teacher supply through Budget 24
    Over the next four years, Budget 24 will support the training and recruitment of 1,500 teachers into the workforce, Education Minister Erica Stanford announced today. “To raise achievement and develop a world leading education system we’re investing nearly $53 million over four years to attract, train and retain our valued ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Joint statement on the New Zealand – Cook Islands Joint Ministerial Forum – 2024
    1.  New Zealand Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Rt Hon Winston Peters; Minister of Health and Minister for Pacific Peoples Hon Dr Shane Reti; and Minister for Climate Change Hon Simon Watts hosted Cook Islands Minister of Foreign Affairs and Immigration Hon Tingika Elikana and Minister of Health Hon Vainetutai Rose Toki-Brown on 24 May ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Middle East, Africa deployments extended
    The Government has approved two-year extensions for four New Zealand Defence Force deployments to the Middle East and Africa, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “These deployments are long-standing New Zealand commitments, which reflect our ongoing interest in promoting peace and stability, and making active ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change Commission Chair to retire
    The Climate Change Commission Chair, Dr Rod Carr, has confirmed his plans to retire at the end of his term later this year, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “Prior to the election, Dr Carr advised me he would be retiring when his term concluded. Dr Rod Carr has led ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Inaugural Board of Integrity Sport & Recreation Commission announced
    Nine highly respected experts have been appointed to the inaugural board of the new Integrity Sport and Recreation Commission, Sport & Recreation Minister Chris Bishop says. “The Integrity Sport and Recreation Commission is a new independent Crown entity which was established under the Integrity Sport and Recreation Act last year, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • A balanced Foreign Affairs budget
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters confirmed today that Vote Foreign Affairs in Budget 2024 will balance two crucial priorities of the Coalition Government.    While Budget 2024 reflects the constrained fiscal environment, the Government also recognises the critical role MFAT plays in keeping New Zealanders safe and prosperous.    “Consistent with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New social housing places to support families into homes
    New social housing funding in Budget 2024 will ensure the Government can continue supporting more families into warm, dry homes from July 2025, Housing Ministers Chris Bishop and Tama Potaka say. “Earlier this week I was proud to announce that Budget 2024 allocates $140 million to fund 1,500 new social ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand’s minerals future
    Introduction Today, we are sharing a red-letter occasion. A Blackball event on hallowed ground. Today  we underscore the importance of our mineral estate. A reminder that our natural resource sector has much to offer.  Such a contribution will not come to pass without investment.  However, more than money is needed. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government sets out vision for minerals future
    Increasing national and regional prosperity, providing the minerals needed for new technology and the clean energy transition, and doubling the value of minerals exports are the bold aims of the Government’s vision for the minerals sector. Resources Minister Shane Jones today launched a draft strategy for the minerals sector in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government progresses Māori wards legislation
    The coalition Government’s legislation to restore the rights of communities to determine whether to introduce Māori wards has passed its first reading in Parliament, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says. “Divisive changes introduced by the previous government denied local communities the ability to determine whether to establish Māori wards.” The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • First RMA amendment Bill introduced to Parliament
    The coalition Government has today introduced legislation to slash the tangle of red and green tape throttling some of New Zealand’s key sectors, including farming, mining and other primary industries. RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop says the Government is committed to  unlocking development and investment while ensuring the environment is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government welcomes EPA decision
    The decision by Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) to approve the continued use of hydrogen cyanamide, known as Hi-Cane, has been welcomed by Environment Minister Penny Simmonds and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay.  “The EPA decision introduces appropriate environmental safeguards which will allow kiwifruit and other growers to use Hi-Cane responsibly,” Ms ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Speech to Employers and Manufacturers Association: Relief for today, hope for tomorrow
    Kia ora, Ngā mihi nui ki a koutou kātoa Tāmaki Herenga Waka, Tāmaki Herenga tangata Ngā mihi ki ngā mana whenua o tēnei rohe Ngāti Whātua ō Ōrākei me nga iwi kātoa kua tae mai. Mauriora. Greetings everyone. Thank you to the EMA for hosting this event. Let me acknowledge ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government invests in 1,500 more social homes
    The coalition Government is investing in social housing for New Zealanders who are most in need of a warm dry home, Housing Minister Chris Bishop says. Budget 2024 will allocate $140 million in new funding for 1,500 new social housing places to be provided by Community Housing Providers (CHPs), not ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $24 million boost for Gumboot Friday
    Thousands more young New Zealanders will have better access to mental health services as the Government delivers on its commitment to fund the Gumboot Friday initiative, says Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey.  “Budget 2024 will provide $24 million over four years to contract the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill passes first reading
    The Coalition Government’s Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill, which will improve tenancy laws and help increase the supply of rental properties, has passed its first reading in Parliament says Housing Minister Chris Bishop. “The Bill proposes much-needed changes to the Residential Tenancies Act 1986 that will remove barriers to increasing private ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Montecassino Commemorative Address, Cassino War Cemetery
    Standing here in Cassino War Cemetery, among the graves looking up at the beautiful Abbey of Montecassino, it is hard to imagine the utter devastation left behind by the battles which ended here in May 1944. Hundreds of thousands of shells and bombs of every description left nothing but piled ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • First Reading – Repeal of Section 7AA of the Oranga Tamariki Act 1989
    I present a legislative statement on the Oranga Tamariki (Repeal of Section 7AA) Amendment Bill Mr. Speaker, I move that the Oranga Tamariki (Repeal of Section 7AA) Amendment Bill be now read a first time. I nominate the Social Services and Community Committee to consider the Bill. Thank you, Mr. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • First reading of 7AA’s repeal: progress for children
    The Bill to repeal Section 7AA of the Oranga Tamariki Act has had its first reading in Parliament today. The Bill reaffirms the Coalition Government’s commitment to the care and safety of children in care, says Minister for Children Karen Chhour.  “When I became the Minister for Children, I made ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • China Business Summit 2024
    Kia ora koutou, good morning, and zao shang hao. Thank you Fran for the opportunity to speak at the 2024 China Business Summit – it’s great to be here today. I’d also like to acknowledge: Simon Bridges - CEO of the Auckland Chamber of Commerce. His Excellency Ambassador - Wang ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Assisted depatures from New Caledonia
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has confirmed a New Zealand Government plane will head to New Caledonia in the next hour in the first in a series of proposed flights to begin bringing New Zealanders home.    “New Zealanders in New Caledonia have faced a challenging few days - and bringing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Assisted departures from New Caledonia
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has confirmed a New Zealand Government plane will head to New Caledonia in the next hour in the first in a series of proposed flights to begin bringing New Zealanders home.  “New Zealanders in New Caledonia have faced a challenging few days - and bringing them ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government to rollout roadside drug testing
    The Coalition Government will introduce legislation this year that will enable roadside drug testing as part of our commitment to improve road safety and restore law and order, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Alcohol and drugs are the number one contributing factor in fatal road crashes in New Zealand. In ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Minister responds to review of Kāinga Ora
    The Government has announced a series of immediate actions in response to the independent review of Kāinga Ora – Homes and Communities, Housing Minister Chris Bishop says. “Kāinga Ora is a large and important Crown entity, with assets of $45 billion and over $2.5 billion of expenditure each year. It ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pseudoephedrine back on shelves
    Associate Health Minister David Seymour is pleased that Pseudoephedrine can now be purchased by the general public to protect them from winter illness, after the coalition government worked swiftly to change the law and oversaw a fast approval process by Medsafe. “Pharmacies are now putting the medicines back on their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand-China Business Summit
    Tēnā koutou katoa. Da jia hao.  Good morning everyone.   Prime Minister Luxon, your excellency, a great friend of New Zealand and my friend Ambassador Wang, Mayor of what he tells me is the best city in New Zealand, Wayne Brown, the highly respected Fran O’Sullivan, Champion of the Auckland business ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New measures to protect powerlines from trees
    Energy Minister Simeon Brown has announced that the Government will make it easier for lines firms to take action to remove vegetation from obstructing local powerlines. The change will ensure greater security of electricity supply in local communities, particularly during severe weather events.  “Trees or parts of trees falling on ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Wairarapa Moana ki Pouakani win top Māori dairy farming award
    Wairarapa Moana ki Pouakani were the top winners at this year’s Ahuwhenua Trophy awards recognising the best in Māori dairy farming. Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka announced the winners and congratulated runners-up, Whakatōhea Māori Trust Board, at an awards celebration also attended by Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Finance Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • DJ Fred Again – Assurance report received
    "On the 27th of March, I sought assurances from the Chief Executive, Department of Internal Affairs, that the Department’s correct processes and policies had been followed in regards to a passport application which received media attention,” says Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden.  “I raised my concerns after being ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • District Court Judges appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins has announced the appointment of three new District Court Judges, to replace Judges who have recently retired. Peter James Davey of Auckland has been appointed a District Court Judge with a jury jurisdiction to be based at Whangarei. Mr Davey initially started work as a law clerk/solicitor with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Unions should put learning ahead of ideology
    Associate Education Minister David Seymour is calling on the Post Primary Teachers’ Association (PPTA) to put ideology to the side and focus on students’ learning, in reaction to the union holding paid teacher meetings across New Zealand about charter schools.     “The PPTA is disrupting schools up and down the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Craig Stobo appointed as chair of FMA
    Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Andrew Bayly today announced the appointment of Craig Stobo as the new chair of the Financial Markets Authority (FMA). Mr Stobo takes over from Mark Todd, whose term expired at the end of April. Mr Stobo’s appointment is for a five-year term. “The FMA plays ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Budget 2024 invests in lifeguards and coastguard
    Surf Life Saving New Zealand and Coastguard New Zealand will continue to be able to keep people safe in, on, and around the water following a funding boost of $63.644 million over four years, Transport Minister Simeon Brown and Associate Transport Minister Matt Doocey say. “Heading to the beach for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago

Page generated in The Standard by Wordpress at 2024-05-29T04:59:51+00:00