web analytics

World Water Week

Written By: - Date published: 11:18 am, September 1st, 2016 - 11 comments
Categories: disaster, Environment, farming, health and safety, International, water - Tags: , , ,

So bang on cue, just when NZ has been hitting the front pages of international newspapers because of the water contamination in Havelock North; and just when the possibility of a national discussion around our abysmal levels of negligence and stupidity might be about to gather steam – along comes “World Water Week

The Guardian is running a few features off the back of it, and when I read the following passages from micro-biologist Joan Rose, my thoughts immediately went to Havelock North. The bit that really struck me was that health issues persisted long after the particular strain of E. coli had been removed from the water supply. Oh yeah – and people went to jail over that one after the government launched the Walkerton Commission inquiry.

Anyway, putting aside the links I’ve provided that might allow for uncomfortable comparisons to be drawn between Havelock North, Walkerton and respective government responses, here’s the excerpt from The Guardian piece that made me sit up and take notice.

In May 2000, around half of Walkerton’s 5,000 residents fell severely ill and seven people died when cow manure washed into a well. The extent of the water pollution in the small Canadian town was concealed from the public, people drank from their taps and the result was ruined lives.

For academic microbiologist Joan Rose, who has observed water pollution outbreaks around the world, it was the worst that she had ever experienced.

“It affected me the most. Walkerton is a small small farming community. The people there were very gracious. Two pathogens came in to their water supply. They did not know children would die, or would suffer kidney failure and be on on dialysis for the rest of their lives. I saw what it did to people. I saw the pain.”

Ring any bells?

11 comments on “World Water Week ”

  1. Ad 1

    Raybon does it better in the NZ Herald this morning.

    M. Smith on Clutha v Thames river is comedy gold.

    • Philj 1.1

      Just read Raybon’s opinion piece in the Herald. It’s oh so true and laugh out loud tragedy. John Oliver would be satisfied. Brilliant Raybon. I suggest you start looking for a new job now….

  2. “Smith says – and this is our Environment Minister being proud – that one of our biggest rivers, the Clutha, is cleaner than the Thames.

    These are the standards of this Government. Ah yes, the alluring Thames, that Eden-like, matte-finish, cess-tuary which chugs like diesel through the beachside resort of Dickensian London.

    Even child-slave chimney sweeps didn’t wash in the Thames. But it’s great that our ENVIRONMENT MINISTER sets his sights high.”

    Mockery, right there.

  3. Thanks Bill good post. Just the start of these water woes, and that comparison with Walkerton is chilling.

  4. Philj 4

    Cheers Bill,
    Thanks and I’ll drink to that!

  5. gsays 5

    Am I being unreasonable thinking the CEO should do some jail time?
    The ultimate responsibility rests on their shoulders.

  6. whispering kate 6

    I have just commented on the Daily Review tonight that Pahiatua in the Wairarapa has had e-coli discovered in their town water supply and the citizens have been advised to boil all their water. Apparently it has happened off in the past and some of the citizens now boil their water all the time. I wonder how the Government is going to explain this, will it be the same old blame it on the bird poop, anything but the f word and I mean farming livestock there.

    Just imagine that a cluster of towns all of a sudden come down with sickness from contaminated bores – especially smaller provincial towns which reside alongside farming stock units. A bird cull I can see in the making just like the pest cull Maggie the gardener has just announced.

  7. Pahi (resting place) atua (gods) – the resting place of the gods

    Hope they’re not planning to drink water while they are there.

    We have fallen a long way in a short time.

  8. reason 8

    Nationals response to Dirty shit filled New Zealand rivers was to launch one of their Dirty Politics shit filled attacks on scientist or people who spoke out about the degrading of our waterways …….

    Mike Joy : ” “I’m pretty disgusted . . . I have been quoted in this article commenting on the state of the environment and people have called me a traitor to this country. I’m just the one doing the research.”

    The pro National party Herald slandered Mike Joy as well …”the Herald. The editorial itself is essentially defamatory……http://publicaddress.net/hardnews/fact-and-fantasy/

    Although the national party is very very good at lies and spin …. e-coli and other pathogens do not care if John Key has a scientist who will say the things John wants ….. Our dirty water will make you sick regardless.

    It could get far far worse as John Key has been quoted as saying he wants NZ ‘ to become a Jersey’ …….

    Somehow he was planning to turn us into one huge cow …………

    With a huge shit problem no doubt …..

    “18,000-30,000 people contract waterborne diseases every year, from microbial contamination. Of the 70 “best” Waikato waterways, e-coli in more than 50 of them exceeds contact recreation levels…..”https://fmacskasy.wordpress.com/tag/mark-unsworth/

  9. A clean Waikato River!

    80 years is nothing!

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Government and horticulture sector target $12b in exports by 2035
    A new Government and industry strategy launched today has its sights on growing the value of New Zealand’s horticultural production to $12 billion by 2035, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor said. “Our food and fibre exports are vital to New Zealand’s economic security. We’re focussed on long-term strategies that build on ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    39 mins ago
  • Cost of living support extended for families and businesses
    25 cents per litre petrol excise duty cut extended to 30 June 2023 – reducing an average 60 litre tank of petrol by $17.25 Road User Charge discount will be re-introduced and continue through until 30 June Half price public transport fares extended to the end of June 2023 saving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • More Kiwis in work as rising wages match inflation
    The strong economy has attracted more people into the workforce, with a record number of New Zealanders in paid work and wages rising to help with cost of living pressures. “The Government’s economic plan is delivering on more better-paid jobs, growing wages and creating more opportunities for more New Zealanders,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Government boosts fund for Auckland flooding
    The Government is providing a further $1 million to the Mayoral Relief Fund to help communities in Auckland following flooding, Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty announced today. “Cabinet today agreed that, given the severity of the event, a further $1 million contribution be made. Cabinet wishes to be proactive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • New Cabinet focused on bread and butter issues
    The new Cabinet will be focused on core bread and butter issues like the cost of living, education, health, housing and keeping communities and businesses safe, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins has announced. “We need a greater focus on what’s in front of New Zealanders right now. The new Cabinet line ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Prime Minister to meet with PM Albanese
    Prime Minister Chris Hipkins will travel to Canberra next week for an in person meeting with Australian Prime Minister, Anthony Albanese. “The trans-Tasman relationship is New Zealand’s closest and most important, and it was crucial to me that my first overseas trip as Prime Minister was to Australia,” Chris Hipkins ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government makes first payment to Auckland Flooding fund
    The Government is providing establishment funding of $100,000 to the Mayoral Relief Fund to help communities in Auckland following flooding, Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty announced. “We moved quickly to make available this funding to support Aucklanders while the full extent of the damage is being assessed,” Kieran McAnulty ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government steps up to assist Auckland during flooding
    As the Mayor of Auckland has announced a state of emergency, the Government, through NEMA, is able to step up support for those affected by flooding in Auckland. “I’d urge people to follow the advice of authorities and check Auckland Emergency Management for the latest information. As always, the Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Poroporoaki: Titewhai Te Huia Hinewhare Harawira
    Ka papā te whatitiri, Hikohiko ana te uira, wāhi rua mai ana rā runga mai o Huruiki maunga Kua hinga te māreikura o te Nota, a Titewhai Harawira Nā reira, e te kahurangi, takoto, e moe Ka mōwai koa a Whakapara, kua uhia te Tai Tokerau e te kapua pōuri ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Enhanced Task Force Green Approved following Cyclone Hale
    Carmel Sepuloni, Minister for Social Development and Employment, has activated Enhanced Taskforce Green (ETFG) in response to flooding and damaged caused by Cyclone Hale in the Tairāwhiti region. Up to $500,000 will be made available to employ job seekers to support the clean-up. We are still investigating whether other parts ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • General Election to be held on 14 October 2023
    The 2023 General Election will be held on Saturday 14 October 2023, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. “Announcing the election date early in the year provides New Zealanders with certainty and has become the practice of this Government and the previous one, and I believe is best practice,” Jacinda ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announces resignation
    Jacinda Ardern has announced she will step down as Prime Minister and Leader of the Labour Party. Her resignation will take effect on the appointment of a new Prime Minister. A caucus vote to elect a new Party Leader will occur in 3 days’ time on Sunday the 22nd of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Trade and Agriculture Minister to attend World Economic Forum and Global Forum for Food and Agricult...
    The Government is maintaining its strong trade focus in 2023 with Trade and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor visiting Europe this week to discuss the role of agricultural trade in climate change and food security, WTO reform and New Zealand agricultural innovation. Damien O’Connor will travel tomorrow to Switzerland to attend the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government funding relief for flood-affected Wairarapa farmers and growers
    The Government has extended its medium-scale classification of Cyclone Hale to the Wairarapa after assessing storm damage to the eastern coastline of the region. “We’re making up to $80,000 available to the East Coast Rural Support Trust to help farmers and growers recover from the significant damage in the region,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government provides support to flooded Tairāwhiti communities
    The Government is making an initial contribution of $150,000 to the Mayoral Relief Fund to help communities in Tairāwhiti following ex-Tropical Cyclone Hale, Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty announced. “While Cyclone Hale has caused widespread heavy rain, flooding and high winds across many parts of the North Island, Tairāwhiti ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Government support for flood-affected Gisborne Tairāwhiti farmers and growers
    Rural Communities Minister Damien O’Connor has classified this week’s Cyclone Hale that caused significant flood damage across the Tairāwhiti/Gisborne District as a medium-scale adverse event, unlocking Government support for farmers and growers. “We’re making up to $100,000 available to help coordinate efforts as farmers and growers recover from the heavy ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago