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

  • New Public Housing Plan announced
    The Government has released its Public Housing Plan 2021-2024 which outlines the intention of where 8,000 additional public and transitional housing places announced in Budget 2020, will go. “The Government is committed to continuing its public house build programme at pace and scale. The extra 8,000 homes – 6000 public ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates President Joe Biden on his inauguration
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated President Joe Biden on his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States of America. “I look forward to building a close relationship with President Biden and working with him on issues that matter to both our countries,” Jacinda Ardern said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Jobs for Nature funding will create training and employment opportunities
    A major investment to tackle wilding pines in Mt Richmond will create jobs and help protect the area’s unique ecosystems, Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor says. The Mt Richmond Forest Park has unique ecosystems developed on mineral-rich geology, including taonga plant species found nowhere else in the country. “These special plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Pre-departure testing extended to all passengers to New Zealand
    To further protect New Zealand from COVID-19, the Government is extending pre-departure testing to all passengers to New Zealand except from Australia, Antarctica and most Pacific Islands, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The change will come into force for all flights arriving in New Zealand after 11:59pm (NZT) on Monday ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Bay Cadets learn skills to protect environment
    Bay Conservation Cadets launched with first intake Supported with $3.5 million grant Part of $1.245b Jobs for Nature programme to accelerate recover from Covid Cadets will learn skills to protect and enhance environment Environment Minister David Parker today welcomed the first intake of cadets at the launch of the Bay ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Cook Islanders to resume travel to New Zealand
    The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Mark Brown have announced passengers from the Cook Islands can resume quarantine-free travel into New Zealand from 21 January, enabling access to essential services such as health. “Following confirmation of the Cook Islands’ COVID ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Supporting communities and landowners to grow employment opportunities
    Jobs for Nature funding is being made available to conservation groups and landowners to employ staff and contractors in a move aimed at boosting local biodiversity-focused projects, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan has announced. It is estimated some 400-plus jobs will be created with employment opportunities in ecology, restoration, trapping, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Border exception for some returning international tertiary students
    The Government has approved an exception class for 1000 international tertiary students, degree level and above, who began their study in New Zealand but were caught offshore when border restrictions began. The exception will allow students to return to New Zealand in stages from April 2021. “Our top priority continues ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tiwai deal gives time for managed transition
    Today’s deal between Meridian and Rio Tinto for the Tiwai smelter to remain open another four years provides time for a managed transition for Southland. “The deal provides welcome certainty to the Southland community by protecting jobs and incomes as the region plans for the future. The Government is committed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New member for APEC Business Advisory Council
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has appointed Anna Curzon to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC). The leader of each APEC economy appoints three private sector representatives to ABAC. ABAC provides advice to leaders annually on business priorities. “ABAC helps ensure that APEC’s work programme is informed by business community perspectives ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt’s careful economic management recognised
    The Government’s prudent fiscal management and strong policy programme in the face of the COVID-19 global pandemic have been acknowledged by the credit rating agency Fitch. Fitch has today affirmed New Zealand’s local currency rating at AA+ with a stable outlook and foreign currency rating at AA with a positive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Additional actions to keep COVID-19 out of NZ
    The Government is putting in place a suite of additional actions to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, including new emerging variants, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Given the high rates of infection in many countries and evidence of the global spread of more transmissible variants, it’s clear that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • 19 projects will clean up and protect waterways
    $36 million of Government funding alongside councils and others for 19 projects Investment will clean up and protect waterways and create local jobs Boots on the ground expected in Q2 of 2021 Funding part of the Jobs for Nature policy package A package of 19 projects will help clean up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand Government acknowledges 175th anniversary of Battle of Ruapekapeka
    The commemoration of the 175th anniversary of the Battle of Ruapekapeka represents an opportunity for all New Zealanders to reflect on the role these conflicts have had in creating our modern nation, says Associate Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Kiri Allan. “The Battle at Te Ruapekapeka Pā, which took ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Better care for babies with tongue-tie
    Babies born with tongue-tie will be assessed and treated consistently under new guidelines released by the Ministry of Health, Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. Around 5% to 10% of babies are born with a tongue-tie, or ankyloglossia, in New Zealand each year. At least half can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Prisoner disorder event at Waikeria Prison over
    The prisoner disorder event at Waikeria Prison is over, with all remaining prisoners now safely and securely detained, Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis says. The majority of those involved in the event are members of the Mongols and Comancheros. Five of the men are deportees from Australia, with three subject to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Pre-departure COVID-19 test for travellers from the UK and the US from 15 January
    Travellers from the United Kingdom or the United States bound for New Zealand will be required to get a negative test result for COVID-19 before departing, and work is underway to extend the requirement to other long haul flights to New Zealand, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins confirmed today. “The new PCR test requirement, foreshadowed last ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago