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

 


Potentially contaminated land mail out starts today

Potentially contaminated land mail out starts today

Only a small percentage of those landowners whose Christchurch properties have recently been identified as potentially contaminated will need to do anything about it, says Environment Canterbury Investigations and Monitoring Director Ken Taylor.

From today, Environment Canterbury begins a four-week mail-out to the owners of about 11,000 Christchurch properties that may have soil contaminated by chemicals or hazardous substances remaining in the ground from a previous use of the land, such as an orchard, market garden or landfill.

“People have a right to know what their land has been used for in the past if it could have contaminated the soil. Most people receiving notification will not need to do anything. It’s only those landowners needing to carry out major land repairs, foundation work or rebuilds as a result of the earthquakes who will have to take any action,” Mr Taylor says.

The number of properties likely to be affected because of significant land damage (EQC Increased Vulnerability to Liquefaction) is 665 and a further 450 affected by having to undertake a major rebuild.

“In most instances, major repairs are likely to be covered by either EQC (land repairs) or their private insurer (rebuilds), which means the necessary consents and soil testing work would be managed for the landowner,” he says.

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health Dr Ramon Pink says that there is very low risk to health from living on contaminated land.

“Even if a property is contaminated, it is very unlikely that the level of contamination will be high enough to result in any health issues,” says Dr Pink.

Dr Pink says that there are some simple things people can do – such as washing your hands after being in the garden – that will further reduce any health risks. For more information on minimising any potential health risk go towww.cph.co.nz/HAIL

Landowners not engaged in major land repair or rebuilding may choose not to get their soil tested.

“In many cases, the soil will be fine. Just because someone’s land has been an orchard, for instance, does not necessarily mean hazardous substances were actually used or buried there, just that they could have been,” Mr Taylor says. “It’s our job to record this and let the landowner know.”

Based on our experience, it’s not that common to find concentrations of contaminants on a Canterbury site high enough to cause long-term health effects, Mr Taylor says.

Environment Canterbury has been working closely with environmental science experts, EQC, the Christchurch City Council, Ministry for the Environment and CERA, to ensure people understand the options available to them whether they are engaged in rebuilding a home or not.


Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Water, Pests, Erosion...: Commissioner Releases Mixed Report Card On Environment

The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment has released a mixed report card in her assessment of the state of New Zealand’s environment. “We are lucky to live in an exceptionally beautiful country, but we have some big issues to face up to” said Dr Jan Wright. More>>

ALSO:

Education: Private Schools Beneficiaries Of Extra Cash

“Not only did this year’s Budget freeze operational funding for state schools, but 86 per cent of secondary school principals say they don’t get enough funding, and the demand for school donations from parents is rising at 10 times the rate of inflation... Now we’ve got Hekia Parata proposing more cash for private schools." More>>

ALSO:

Shop Hours Bill Second Reading: Government Blocks Easter Trading Petition

The union representing retail workers is warning that the Government is out of touch with working people after passing the second reading of the Shop Trading Hours Amendment Bill, a law handing local authorities the power to permit trading on Easter Sunday. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Shewan Inquiry Into Our Tax Haven Rules

Like the political equivalent of lithium, Prime Minister John Key is routinely administered to dull any politically dangerous mood swings amidst the general public... More>>

ALSO:

Law Commission: Review Of Search And Surveillance Act Begins

“For example, the Act was drafted before cloud-based storage of data was commonplace. In the light of these and other developments, the Commission will be examining whether the investigative powers in the Act are sufficient for law enforcement purposes. We will also consider whether the safeguards that surround those processes are adequate.” More>>

ALSO:

Houses, Campers And Cops: LGNZ Media Briefing

At their quarterly media briefing today Local Government New Zealand addressed areas where local authorities are feeling pressure and outlined their approach for the upcoming local body elections in September-October. More>>

ALSO:

17 Year Sentences In Baby Moko Case: Attorney General On Plea Bargain

“The Crown’s decisions in this case, including the decision to accept the manslaughter pleas, were motivated by the need to secure convictions for this horrendous killing and to avoid the significant risk that either of the defendants could escape such a conviction because of evidential issues.” More>>

ALSO:

As Govt Cuts Lobby Anti-Smoking Group Funds: On The Nation - Plain Packaging Debate

Imperial Tobacco leaves open possibility of law suit against New Zealand government if plain packaging is introduced, as planned. Says it’s a “last resort” but “of course we will defend the right to use our brands”. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news