Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Nature still reeling from Rena impact


Forest & Bird media release for immediate use

Nature still reeling from Rena impact

One year on from the Rena disaster, independent conservation organisation Forest & Bird is still concerned at the ongoing environmental impacts of the oil spill, unrecovered containers and the shipwreck.

Forest & Bird Central North Island Field Officer Al Fleming says 350 containers from the ship have not been recovered. “These containers are breaking down, possibly releasing debris and toxic chemicals into the marine environment.

“The wreck is still on the reef, and Forest & Bird is concerned at possible pollution of Bay of Plenty waters from this. Before deciding on whether the Rena wreck should remain, we would like to see an assessment of the environmental impacts,” Al Fleming says.

The loss of an estimated 20,000 birds when 350 tonnes of heavy fuel leaked from the grounded ship has had a terrible effect on populations of many species of birds that live in the Bay of Plenty and further afield. “Bay of Plenty beaches, estuaries and harbours are important nesting sites for many of our shorebirds, including oyster catchers and terns,” Al Fleming says.

The impact of the oil spill on the local New Zealand dotterel population has been of most serious concern. “Dotterels are a threatened species with a population between 1500 and 1800,” says Al Fleming. “After the Rena disaster, 60 adults were removed from Bay of Plenty beaches. Five died from a lung infection while in captivity. No eggs or chicks were removed from the beaches so they were lost as well. This is a significant loss when you’re talking about a small population of birds.”

Forest & Bird is working with central government, the Bay of Plenty Regional Council and WWF-NZ on a three-year Bay of Plenty Shorebird Protection Programme to re-establish shorebird populations devastated in the oil spill.

Work has already started on pest control, habitat restoration, an education programme in schools, and raising public awareness of threats to our native shorebirds.

“This year’s breeding season and the success of the shorebird protection programme is critical to the long-term recovery of bird populations,” says Al Fleming.

Forest & Bird is continuing to work with Rena operator Costamare and insurer the Swedish Club to create a fund for the long-term recovery of the region’s environment.

Al Fleming says the oil spill was a tragedy for nature, and Forest & Bird supports the independent review being launched to ensure our environment is safeguarded from future disasters. “I hope the lessons from the Rena can teach us how to avoid other potential environmental catastrophes if we pursue offshore oil and gas drilling.”


ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Parliament Today:

Werewolf: The Defence Pretence

Last year, the world began spending more money on weapons again, for the first time since 2011... New Zealand belongs to a region – Asia and Oceania – where military spending rose sharply in 2015, by 5.4 per cent. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Not Crying Foul, Argentina

So a couple of guys found to be criminally liable of environmental pollution in Argentina lodge an application with the Overseas Investment Office… in order to buy some prime New Zealand rural land. Seems that their factory back home had carelessly and/or intentionally discharged toxic waste into the Lujan river. Bummer... More>>

ALSO:

Urban & Rural: $303m To Merge And Modernise New Zealand’s Fire Services

Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne today announced funding of $303 million over five years to combine urban and rural fire services into one organisation from mid-2017. More>>

ALSO:

High Trust Regime: What Did The PM Tell His Lawyer About Foreign Trusts?

The Government stopped the IRD from reviewing New Zealand foreign trusts shortly after the Prime Minister’s lawyer wrote to the Revenue Minister claiming John Key had promised him the regime would not be changed. More>>

ALSO:

Road Crime: Wicked Campers Vans Classified As Objectionable

The definition of publication includes any "thing that has printed or impressed upon it, or otherwise shown upon it, 1 or more (or a combination of 1 or more) images, representations, signs, statements, or words", The Classification Office has previously classified such 'things' as billboards, t-shirts, and even a drink can. This is the first time the Classification Office has classified a vehicle. More>>

ALSO:

'When New' Repairs: Landmark EQC Settlement

The Earthquake Commission has cut a deal with 98 Canterbury homeowners that affirms the government entity's responsibility to repair earthquake-damaged property to a 'when new' state, as well as covering repairs for undamaged parts of a property and clarifying its position on cash settlement calculations. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Kiwirail’s Latest Stint In The Dogbox

The denigration of Kiwirail continues. The latest review (based on a 2014 assessment) of the options facing the company have enabled Kiwirail to be hung out to dry once again as a liability and burden on the taxpayer. More>>

ALSO:

Royal Society Report: Good Opportunities To Act Now On Climate Change

There are many actions New Zealand can and should take now to reduce the threat of climate change and transition to a low-carbon economy, a report released today by the Royal Society of New Zealand finds... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news