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Risk Of Disaster From Ruapehu Lake - NZ First


Media Release
17 January 2005

Risk Of Disaster From Ruapehu Lake - NZ First

New Zealand First is calling on the Ministers of Internal Affairs and Conservation to explain exactly how they have addressed concerns for human safety and infrastructural risk in the Ruapehu district, because of the dangerously high level of the crater lake.

“I asked the Ministers in December and again in early January to urgently consider adopting interventionist strategies on the Ruapehu crater lake to minimise the risk to surrounding areas, but as yet have been given no assurances,” said local government and environment spokesperson Jim Peters.

“I am aware that the Ruapehu District Council has a major emergency management plan, that appropriate warning devices are in place, and that Government funding and advice have been available, but these measures do not keep the lake contained.

“Notwithstanding the plan, nothing is in place which would really alleviate the dramatic impact should the lake break through its highest bunding level.

“The Government needs to urgently review its historical unwillingness to face up to the impact of a potential disaster, and the likely consequences on the downstream and down-country communities.

“The most recent media statement from the Minister of Conservation shows he has little understanding of the potential impact on human safety and infrastructure,” said Mr Peters.

ENDS

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