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Water Wastage Ranking All Wet

Water Wastage Ranking All Wet

Thursday 20 Mar 2003 Gerry Eckhoff Press Releases -- Rural

ACT New Zealand Rural Affairs Spokesman Gerry Eckhoff today questioned the logic behind New Zealand's ranking as one of the world's top five water wasters, according to the first ever `Water Poverty Index'.

"This index has been compiled by a team of 31 international researchers - if we applied the same logic they used to determine our rate of water wastage, they would probably also find that New Zealand wastes sunlight and oxygen as well," Mr Eckhoff said.

"Dr Caroline Sullivan's statement that we are inefficient - because we use a lot of water on irrigation - is breathtaking in its stupidity. Would we be more efficient if we were to allow fresh water to run to the sea? And what of the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere that we absorb to produce oxygen through the growing of pasture, trees and shrubs in our garden?

"In reality, New Zealand actually exports water, in the form of protein, milk powder, beef, lamb, wool, timber, etc, to countries which cannot grow protein efficiently - due to a shortage of fresh water. Our trade with these countries has enabled them to use what water they have for human use, and not to produce food at enormous cost.

"Just how this international team of `experts' believes New Zealand's over usage of water will negate Ethiopian droughts is beyond reason.

"However, I have no doubt that local councils will seize on this false information, using it to apply perverse logic to restrict water usage in New Zealand, in order to ease world water shortages in the Third World - yet another example of profound stupidity," said Mr Eckhoff.

ENDS


For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.

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