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

 


Companies fined for muddying the waters

Companies fined for muddying the waters


Two Canterbury businesses have been successfully prosecuted by Environment Canterbury for their part in allowing sediment laden run-off from a building development to enter Duvauchelle Bay.

Both Sicon Ferguson Limited and Tresta Holdings Limited pleaded guilty at the Christchurch District Court in late June to breaching the Resource Management Act and were fined a total of $52,500. A third company, Elliot Sinclair and Partners Limited was found not guilty in relation to the same case.

“The plume of dirty water that was washed into Duvauchelle Bay last May was a direct result of these companies disregarding good advice and not taking the appropriate steps to lessen the risk posed by forecasted poor weather,” says Kim Drummond, Director for Resource Management at Environment Canterbury.

“They had been warned of the potential for the discharge and had had a similar one previously, but still they did not take adequate measures to prevent it happening again. Erosion and sediment control is a critical factor in any works near water and they neglected to follow the plans laid out which would have stopped this from happening.”

Judge J J M Hassan noted during sentencing that the primary cause of the offence was the errors of judgement made. “Neither Sicon or Tresta sought to deliberately pollute the environment. However, in various respects each of you demonstrated deliberateness in departing from your legal obligations.

“With large earthworks projects in challenging and sensitive environments such as this, there is clearly a need for diligence in project management and well systemised adherence to environmental controls.” The judge went on to add that the temptation to put environmental protection second must be strongly resisted.

Kim Drummond hopes the outcome of this case proves a timely reminder to others involved in these kinds of building developments that they have obligations to the community and the environment that they need to meet.

“Having inadequate erosion and sediment control practices that result in the kind of incident we saw in Duvauchelle Bay is just not acceptable. We don’t like to see our waterways treated this way and if we find it happening we’ll take those responsible to task over it.

“We have developed a number of programmes to help the industry, including the Builders Pocket Guide which responds to the expected increase in earthworks and supports the objectives of Canterbury Water Management Strategy and Earthquake Recovery. We also have staff whose role it is to develop strong working relationships with contractors, providing advice, support and encouragement for them to actively manage the environmental risks.”

During sentencing Judge Hassan recognised the associated cultural impact this incident had on local iwi Te Rununga o Ōnuku and took this into consideration along with the ecological effects. Scion was deemed comparatively more culpable and fined $30,000, while Tresta was fined $22,000.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Patience: Drive Safe

Be patient before passing is the AA's message for drivers this Labour weekend.

"People taking crazy risks to get past other vehicles is one of the most dangerous things on the road,” says AA spokesperson Dylan Thomsen.

“The weather is looking good for the long weekend so the roads will be busy. Unfortunately, that also increases the chances of people getting frustrated and trying a risky passing manoeuvre. When they get past, there will probably be more traffic up ahead anyway so it won’t get people there faster.” More>>

 
 

Parliament Today:

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news