Written By: - Date published: 9:05 am, April 13th, 2017 - 55 comments
Categories: business, capitalism, Conservation, Economy, Environment, national, Politics, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: maggie barry
This is really unfortunate timing for National. On top of news that it does not care about homeless families, children living in poverty, water standards or climate change amongst many other things there is breaking news that it does not care about Kiwis. The feathered kind.
I blogged about Alpine Pure’s intent to take huge amounts of water two weeks ago. I was astounded that there was a plan to extract millions of litres of water out of a Unesco world heritage site, send it by pipe to the West Coast and then ship it to foreign markets for bottling. The cost of the water would essentially be nil.
Well sounds like things are even worse than I thought.
A company that’s been given the right to take water that originates in a National Park has also been given the right to lay a pipeline through a sanctuary for New Zealand’s rarest kiwi.
The ‘Alpine Pure’ water will come from the Mount Aspiring National Park and could force the removal of up to 35 rare kiwi, the Haast Tokoeka.
Conservation Minister Maggie Barry put out a press release today trumpeting how the Department of Conservation (DoC) has just released some Haast Tokoeka from a breeding programme, back into the very area that’s affected.
But Ms Barry has no idea about the pipeline. “I’ll need to find out more about the detail of it,” she said when asked about it in Parliament on Wednesday.
“It’s certainly possible to do and DoC and the other experts in this field are capable of doing that. But you wouldn’t want to do it unless there was a really good reason.”
Lets do a cost benefit analysis of the proposal. The benefit is … I’m not sure. Fees paid to local authorities are miniscule. There will be a few jobs constructing the pipeline. There would also be a few jobs constructing a footpath or repairing a DOC track, probably more.
But this Government is happy to grant permission to put a pipeline though a very important reserve which is habitat to one of our rarest national birds.
Sure the disruption may not be great. But there is no community benefit that I can see.
How about a price is put on the extraction of water. One significant enough so that the protection of our national icon can be funded properly and guaranteed.
Update: And if you want to sign a petition against the pipeline there is one at Actionstation.