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

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Royals: The Prince Of Wales And Duchess Of Cornwall To Visit

Prime Minister John Key welcomes today’s announcement that the Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall will visit New Zealand in November. This will be the second joint visit for Their Royal Highnesses to New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:

Tracey Martin Replaced: Ron Mark Is New New Zealand First Deputy Leader

Clayton Mitchell was the successful candidate for the Associate Whip position. Winston Peters was re-elected as Leader by the Caucus. Ron Mark was elected as the Deputy Leader with effect from 10am, Friday, 3rd July. More>>

ALSO:

Rebuild Rebrand: "Regenerate Christchurch" To Replace CERA

The regeneration of Christchurch will be the city’s focus for the next five years as local leadership progressively takes control of the rebuild, Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee says. More>>

ALSO:

Nauru: Scholars Urge Minister To Act On Deteriorating Democracy

“Since the 2013 election in Nauru, there has been a series of disturbing developments on the islands that indicate a severe deterioration in the state of its parliamentary democracy and in the rule of law,” say the scholars. More>>

ALSO:

Foreign Affairs: NZ Begins Presidency Of UN Security Council

Prime Minister John Key has welcomed the start of New Zealand’s month-long Presidency of the United Nations Security Council in New York. More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Cash For Charter Schools, Mould For State Schools

“Recently released financial statements show the Whangarei charter school He Puna Marama received $3.9 million in government funding to the end of last year. Yet their audited accounts show they only spent $1.4 million on education, leaving almost $2.5 million over two years unaccounted for." More>>

ALSO:

Kiwirail Plans Shift From Electric: National Urged Not To Take Backwards Step

The National Government shouldn’t drag New Zealand backwards by replacing its climate friendly electric trains with carbon-polluting diesel trains, the Green Party said today. More>>

ALSO:

Capital Connection:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news