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Maori Party Concerned By Contaminated Site

Te Ururoa Flavell; Member of Parliament for Waiariki

9 November 2005

An independent peer review conducted by Lou Gallagher, environmental epidemiologist, has recommended the Whakatane District Council initiate an evaluation of human health risk at the site proposed for The Hub shopping centre.

"How much value is a human life worth?" asked Te Ururoa Flavell, "if the local Council seems to have such little regard for the health risks of a contaminated site".

The Gallagher Report raised questions about the safety of the site following the use of pentachlorophenol (pcp) and dioxin at the site when it was a sawmill.

"I commend the commitment of Sawmill Workers Against Poisons in raising the contamination issues in the interests of the health and safety of workers" stated Mr Flavell.

"I call for an immediate evaluation of the human health risk at the former sawmill site, which will reference toxicity values and meet public health standards".

"The irony of this situation is that whereas the Ministry of Environment's website states it will "continue to work on a whole of Government approach to organochlorines, including dioxin issues in New Plymouth and Whakatane", the local council in Whakatane seems to have got off scot-free".

ENDS


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