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


Time to aim a spotlight on contaminated land

9 October 2008

Time to aim a spotlight on contaminated land - Greens

A Green Party Budget bid aimed at investigating contaminated land in New Zealand has shed a small shaft of light on dioxin contamination at sawmill sites.

A report, published by the Environment Ministry today, sampled 15 new sites where pentachlorophenol or PCP was used, Co-Leader Russel Norman says.

"The report raises some serious concerns about the management of some sites as a number identified are now used for residential purposes and it was not clear whether the contamination had been mitigated.

"This investigation is a small first step, but there is much work to be done to identify the dirty secret of other sites that were contaminated due to dumping of waste from sawmills and run off into nearby waterways," Dr Norman says.

"The broader issues around contaminated land are complex and past Governments have failed to address these, preferring instead to sweep these costly problems under the carpet.

"There are sensitive issues that need to be tackled around liability for the clean-up of sites. In some cases landowners have simply walked away and left communities to deal with the problem.

"We suspect there are literally thousands of sites around the country that are contaminated from past use, however, New Zealanders can not easily find out where these site are located.

"The Green Party tried to carry out its own survey in attempt to build a picture of the scale of the contamination problem in New Zealand. We were very concerned to find that many councils do not hold thorough records and some, who did, refused to disclose them to us," Dr Norman says.

"The Greens believe that a large scale investigation should be carried out to crack open this toxic can of worms so that we can make our environment safe for future generations."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Back Again: Government Approves TPP11 Mandate

The Government has approved a negotiating mandate for Trans-Pacific Partnership 11 (TPP11), which will ensure New Zealand businesses remain competitive in overseas markets.

Trade Minister Todd McClay says New Zealand will be pushing for the minimal number of changes possible to the original TPP agreement, something that the remaining TPP11 countries have agreed on. More>>




Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice. More>>


Rail: Greens Back Tauranga – Hamilton – Auckland Service

The Green Party today announced that it will trial a passenger rail service between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga starting in 2019, when it is in government. More>>


Housing: Voluntary Rental Warrant Of Fitness For Wellington

Wellington City Council is partnering with the University of Otago, Wellington, to launch a voluntary Rental Warrant of Fitness for minimum housing standards in Wellington, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>


Treaty: Agreement In Principle Signed With Moriori

“The Crown acknowledges Moriori was left virtually landless from 1870, hindering its cultural, social and economic development. The Crown also acknowledges its contribution to the myths that the people of Moriori were racially inferior and became extinct." More>>


Susan Devoy: Call For Inquiry Into State Abuse Reaches UN

Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy is in Geneva and has asked a United Nations committee to urge the New Zealand government to initiate an inquiry into the physical and sexual abuse of children and disabled people held in state institutions. More>>


(Not National): Cross-Party Agreement On Pike River Re-Entry

The commitment was signed this afternoon by the leaders of Labour, United Future, The Maori Party, and the Green Party and, together with the earlier commitment by New Zealand First, means that there is now a Parliamentary majority behind the families’ fight for truth and justice. More>>






Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election