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

 


Council Fine Tunes Hydrocarbon Sensor Protecting Raetihi

Council Fine Tunes Hydrocarbon Sensor Protecting Raetihi


Ruapehu District Council (RDC) is continuing to test and adjust the hydrocarbon sensor on Raetihi’s water intake in preparation for returning the Makotuku River as the township’s water source.

A spill from the Turoa ski field on Mt Ruapehu in October last year leaked 19,000 litres of diesel into the Makotuku River forcing RDC to switch the water source for Raetihi township to the Makara Stream.

Ever since the end of the of the civil defence response phase to the diesel spill RDC has been working to return Raetihi’s water source to the Makotuku River.

RDC Environment Manager, Anne-Marie Westcott, said that the successful installation of a hydrocarbon sensor on the raw water line feeding the Raetihi water treatment plant is a critical factor in enabling council to return the water supply to the Makotuku.

“Council is taking an extremely cautious approach in returning to the Makotuku River as Raetihi’s water source,” she said.

“The installation of a hydrocarbon sensor on a town’s water supply like in Raetihi has never been done before in New Zealand.”

“We are not willing to switch back to the Makotuku until the new systems have been thoroughly tested and we are satisfied that they are robust enough to withstand a wide range of factors.”

“In the case of the hydrocarbon sensor this includes testing it across a range of weather conditions from the current hot and dry conditions to wet and wild all of which affect things such as the river flow, run-off and water turbidity.”

“During the last heavy rain fall the hydrocarbon sensor picked-up very low readings measured in micrograms per litre.”

“As streams have natural oil in them that is released from the decay of plant material samples will need to be taken to confirm if the hydrocarbons detected is from the diesel or naturally occurring oils.”

Ms Westcott noted that this was positive and demonstrated how sensitive the sensor was at recording oils at very low concentrations.

“It may be however that the sensor has been set at too lower level than is required to detect diesel so we will be looking into that.”

“The other adjustment we have made is the installation of a float designed to keep the sensor submerged at the right level as the river flow goes up and down,” she said.

“The intake is designed to ensure that any diesel trapped in sludge is released into the water and can float to the top to be picked-up by the sensor.”

“We appreciate that the Raetihi community would like to see a return to larger Makotuku River over the current temporary smaller Makara Stream as their water supply as soon as possible but we won’t be taking any chances with the health of the community.”

Ms Westcott added that council hoped to be able to advise a target date for the switch back to the Makotuku at the next Waimarino Waiouru Community Board meeting on Thursday 13th February.

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Parliament Today:

The Kids: OECD Report Shows Huge Impact Of Poverty On Education

A new report from the OECD has again highlighted the negative effects of poverty, showing that disadvantaged children in New Zealand are more than six times more likely to underachieve in maths than children from wealthier homes. More>>

ALSO:

Pacific: NZ Pledges $500,000 To Help Address Zika

“With the Zika virus now confirmed in a number of Pacific countries, New Zealand is committed to helping limit the impact and spread of the virus in the region,” says Mr McCully. “New Zealand will provide $250,000 as a contribution to the WHO to implement the Pacific Zika Action Plan, and a further $250,000 to enable countries in the region to respond rapidly if required." More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Police Commissioner 'Doesn’t Get Force Needs'

The Police Commissioner has let down the public and his own force by insisting the police have what they need despite it taking a year to solve a burglary and overwhelming number of officers saying they are under-resourced, says Labour’s Police spokesman Stuart Nash. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The US Pressure To Expand Our Role In Iraq

Foreign news services are being more forthcoming about what the “next 12 months” will entail – essentially, the defence ministers will be under US pressure to increase their “training” role preparatory to an assault on the city of Mosul in northern Iraq. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Restarts: Prime Minister’s Statement

Our policy agenda and legislative programme will reflect the Government’s four priorities: • to responsibly manage the Government’s finances • to build a more competitive and productive economy • to deliver better public services to New Zealanders, an • to support the rebuilding of Christchurch. More>>

ALSO:

NZEI Survey Report: Special Needs Students Missing Out

The survey revealed that around 16 percent of students were on schools’ special needs registers, but nearly 90 percent of schools’ special needs coordinators did not believe there was adequate support for students and their learning... More>>

ALSO:

Interim Report: Waitangi Tribunal On Ture Whenua Legislation

Labour on Proposed changes to Maori land rules: “To have Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson dismiss findings as ‘bizarre’ is totally disingenuous and disrespectful. What’s bizarre is Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell stubbornly pushing through this Bill before the Waitangi Tribunal has even completed its report..." More>>

ALSO:

Spy Update: Appointment Of GCSB Acting Director

GCSB Chief Legal Advisor Lisa Fong will become the Acting Director of the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) from 15 February 2016, Minister Responsible for the GCSB Christopher Finlayson announced today. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news