Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Jim Sutton Speech - Project Aqua

10 April 2001 Speech Notes

Embargoed until: 4pm, 11 April 2001

Project Aqua
Oamaru


Ladies and Gentlemen: this project could be a big deal for the Lower Waitaki.

There is a lot of work to go yet, and I am reassured by Meridian’s commitment to full consultation.

And that's on all issues. There are not just commercial concerns involved here - the Lower Waitaki River is a salmon fishery of international renown. That has to be conserved.

I am reassured by Meridian’s commitment to consult fully to ensure the fishery is protected.

Meridian Energy’s irrigation and agricultural advisors have carried out concept studies to assess how potential irrigation schemes could be economic and integrated with Project Aqua. These studies have shown that potentially nearly 39,000 hectares of land currently un-irrigated could be enabled by the project. This includes some land included in schemes currently proposed by other groups.

Meridian Energy’s advisors have estimated that if the 39,000 hectares was irrigated it would create an additional 1800 full-time jobs and add $145 million of value to the region’s economy each year.

It is also estimated that the construction of the off-farm schemes needed to convey water from the Project Aqua canal to the farm gate would generate about 300 jobs lasting about 10 years.

Project Aqua is estimated to cost $970 million. Of this more than 60% is expected to be spent nationally and the remainder on imported components, particularly for power station equipment such as turbines, generators and transformers. Based on a six-year construction period, an additional 1300 national and 600 local jobs will be created.

I am pleased that Meridian recognises the value of multiple-use of water and that it will consult closely with irrigation groups and in-river users to explore how they might enhance outcomes for all.

It is my view that the social and economic progress of the East coast of the South Island is being held back by interest groups with vision so narrow that it cannot embrace the legitimate aspirations of others.

We cannot commit the water in certain rivers, for the gratification of recreational users, when others need some of it for domestic, industrial and agricultural uses which create employment and support families and the wider community.

But nor can we take all the water for economic use, if that despoils our environment and deprives people of much-loved recreation. Nor can we afford to make inefficient use of that water we do commit to abstraction, when that denies more valuable activities access.

We need, urgently in my view, a system that encourages the wisest possible use of the water resource – again in my view we don't presently have such a system.

This proposal is for a canal on the south bank of the river, but I am pleased that Meridian will consult with any parties wanting to promote irrigation schemes on the North Bank and to determine how their needs could be met on a sustainable resource sharing basis.

As I said at the start of my speech, this is just the beginning for this project. There will be many hurdles to get over before completion. Good luck.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Tax Working Group’s Road Map

Trying to analyse the interim report on the Tax Working Group (TWG) is like trying to review an entire All Blacks game, but at the half- time mark.

With so much still to be finalised, Sir Michael Cullen and his colleagues are going to need all the All Blacks’ fabled finishing skills to get a coherent, fiscally neutral package together by the February 2019 deadline. More>>

 

Meth Testing Report: Housing NZ "To Right Wrong"

Phil Twyford “Housing NZ acknowledges that around 800 tenants suffered by either losing their tenancies, losing their possessions, being suspended from the public housing waiting list, negative effects on their credit ratings or, in the worst cases, being made homeless.” More>>

ALSO:

No Reshuffle: Meka Whaitiri Removed As A Minister

Meka Whaitiri will be removed as a Minister with immediate effect... The decision was made after receiving a report into an incident that occurred on 27 August in Gisborne, involving Meka Whaitiri and one of her staff. More>>

ALSO:

Pay Equity Bill: Making History For Women’s Pay

The Equal Pay Amendment Bill, introduced to the House today, will make it easier for workers to make a pay equity claim , using a more simple and accessible process within New Zealand’s existing bargaining framework. More>>

ALSO:

Suffrage 125: NZ A Trailblazer For Women

“We acknowledge the work of Kate Sheppard, Meri Te Tai Mangakāhia, and all of the suffragists who tirelessly campaigned for the vote… Today we also need to ask each other: how we can continue to make our country a fairer and better place to continue the legacy of the suffragists.” More>>

ALSO:

Asylum: Refugee Quota Increasing To 1500

“The quota increase will take place from July 2020. In the meantime, we will work to increase the number and spread of refugee resettlement and support services. We need to make sure we’re prepared for this change in policy.” More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels