Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Marine Farmers Want Environmental Action

15 July 2004

Marine Farmers Want Environmental Action

Increasing human pollution of New Zealand’s coastal environment has led a New Zealand marine farming leader to suggest that members of his organisations contest every application for new development in areas where sewage systems are deficient.

New Zealand Aquaculture Council Chairman and Oyster Industry Association President Callum McCallum says the latest incidents of human waste discharge forcing the closure of Bay of Islands oyster farms has brought a long term, nationwide, problem into focus.

“It seems that development too frequently occurs without appropriate investment in systems that protect the coastal marine environment and I see no alternative now but to try and force local authorities in affected areas to invest in adequate infrastructure before they allow further development.”

Mr McCallum says marine farmers and others concerned about the health of the coastal environment should consider doing this by contesting any new Resource Management Act applications involving discharge consents to ensure protection of water quality to the maximum extent possible.

He says some people will no doubt think that the solution to the problem is to get rid of aquaculture. “They should instead think logically about this problem. In reality, marine farmers are the ‘Canary in the coal mine’ of the marine environment. This pollution is flashing a big red light to New Zealander’s that parts of their environment are in danger of literally turning to crap.”

“Marine farming requires its life-blood – water – to be unpolluted. But if the marine farms weren’t there the pollution would still be entering the environment and the food chain. There would just be more pollution warning signs popping up on our beaches.”

I think it is offensive to all NZ’ers that District and Regional Councils are allowing the level of sewage discharges to continue at the existing rate. NZ’ers are a coastal nation we pride ourselves on our clean green image which in reality is at risk. Councils are allowing the “clean” to disappear from the NZ brand which sells not only tourism but many of our primary products overseas.

“The issues reflect decisions taken over a number of years and I think reflect the fact that many local authorities have lost the plot in regard to spending priorities. They have to get back to providing essential services, such as sound sewage systems to protect our environment.”

“For too long marine farmers have been made to feel guilty for using the marine environment to create businesses, jobs, and ultimately foreign exchange earnings that benefit all New Zealanders, including those in communities that apparently then feel it is ok to flush their toilets on them.”

Mr McCallum says he is perplexed by a “deafening silence” from individuals and organisations that claim to care about the environment.

“Why are Greens, economic and tourism development officials, and many local authority environmental “watchdogs” so quiet about this?”

“They should, for example, find it bitterly ironic that Bay of Island oyster farmers have their livelihoods on hold because the Far North District Council apparently can’t afford an adequate sewage system, while Tourism New Zealand uses “Pure” branding to attract people there.”

Mr McCallum says groaning infrastructure that is not managing to keep pace with development pressures is not just a problem in Northland. “New Zealand marine farmers have been warning for sometime that pollution from untreated waste has the potential to erode the health of the marine environment.”

The members of the New Zealand Aquaculture Council which Mr McCallum chairs grow and sell seafood worth more than $300 million a year.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


I Sing The Highway Electric: Charge Net NZ To Connect New Zealand

BMW is turning Middle Earth electric after today announcing a substantial contribution to the charging network Charge Net NZ. This landmark partnership will enable Kiwis to drive their electric vehicles (EVs) right across New Zealand through the installation of a fast charging highway stretching from Kaitaia to Invercargill. More>>


Watch This Space: Mahia Rocket Lab Launch Site Officially Opened

Economic Development Minster Steven Joyce today opened New Zealand’s first orbital launch site, Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1, on the Mahia Peninsula on the North Island’s east coast. More>>


Marketing Rocks!
Ig Nobel Award Winners Assess The Personality Of Rocks

A Massey University marketing lecturer has received the 2016 Ig Nobel Prize for economics for a research project that asked university students to describe the “brand personalities” of three rocks. More>>


Nurofen Promotion: Reckitt Benckiser To Plead Guilty To Misleading Ads

Reckitt Benckiser (New Zealand) intends to plead guilty to charges of misleading consumers over the way it promoted a range of Nurofen products, the Commerce Commission says. More>>


Half A Billion Accounts, Including Xtra: Yahoo Confirms Huge Data Breach

The account information may have included names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth, hashed passwords (the vast majority with bcrypt) and, in some cases, encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers. More>>


Rural Branches: Westpac To Close 19 Branches, ANZ Looks At 7

Westpac confirms it will close nineteen branches across the country; ANZ closes its Ngaruawahia branch and is consulting on plans to close six more branches; The bank workers union says many of its members are nervous about their futures and asking ... More>>

Interest Rates: RBNZ's Wheeler Keeps OCR At 2%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 2 percent and said more easing will be needed to get inflation back within the target band. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news