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ARC says “We couldn’t have done it without you”

ARC says “We couldn’t have done it without you”

10 June 2005

The ARC is singing the praises of volunteers who helped the ARC pollution control team and the Muriwai park rangers clean up the debris from shipping containers full of milk products at Muriwai beach.

On Tuesday 31 May ten containers fell overboard from the ‘Tasman Endeavour’ near Manukau Heads. Three containers washed up near Muriwai spilling bags of milk products.

Chair of the ARC’s Parks and Heritage Committee, Sandra Coney, says the positive response to the incident showed how much the local community of Muriwai cares about their environment.

“I would like to acknowledge the local community groups, local farmers and residents, the Muriwai Progressive Association, the Muriwai Residents and Ratepayers Association, the Auckland 4WD and Landrover Owners Clubs, and friends who volunteered their time to do the necessary clean-up, not to mention ARC staff who went the extra mile,” says Cr Coney.

“While the high energy of the Muriwai coastline meant that the milk products did not pose a long lasting environmental threat, the plastic packaging and polystyrene from the shipping containers themselves posed a long-term risk to wildlife.”
“It was encouraging to see how quickly everyone responded to cleaning up Muriwai to prevent environmental damage to the wildlife in the area,” she says.

ARC Manager Land and Water Quality, Eddie Grogan also praised the response from the shipping company.

“It was refreshing to deal with a company that did not dispute the level of clean-up required. Tasman Orient Line Ltd did not baulk at taking responsibility for cleaning up, and underwriting all the costs incurred,” says Mr. Grogan.

“Tasman Orient Line Ltd have also gone one step further and have offered to help the ARC with the development of a protocol for the shipping industry to deal with similar incidents in future,” he says.

The ARC and Tasman Orient Line Ltd are working together to search for the remaining containers. A programme of coastline monitoring is in place and a clean-up response team on standby if further containers wash ashore.


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