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

 


Goverment drops recreational river reporting

Goverment drops recreational river reporting

The Government pulled the plug on cleaning up our dirty rivers so they are safe for swimming, and now it has given up on annual reports about the problem, the Green Party said today.

Two weeks ago the Government released its national bottom lines for water quality with changes to the National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management. The bottom line for human health is secondary contact. This means levels of faecal contamination have to be at a level suitable for boating or wading, but not for swimming.

The Environment Minister's answers to parliamentary questions from the Green Party have since confirmed the Government is dropping its annual reporting on how many monitored river swimming sites are safe for swimming. Last year 61 percent of monitored recreational sites on rivers were not clean enough to swim in.

“New Zealanders want clean rivers that they can swim in. National has thrown in the towel on ensuring rivers are clean and safe for swimming in. Now National is trying to cover up the state of our rivers by stopping these longstanding annual reports on the state of our rivers,” Green Party water spokesperson Eugenie Sage said today.

“Abandoning annual reports on recreational water quality and replacing these with general water quality reports every three years is seeking to hide the facts about the continuing decline in the state of our rivers.

“The indicator report is regular, easy to understand and shows the whole picture, National just don’t want to see it.

“The LAWA website, referred to by the Minister, gives a good picture about trends at individual sites, but it doesn’t show the overall national picture of whether our rivers are safe to swim in, like the indicator report the Government has dropped.

“National’s so-called rules are just a licence to pollute. The Government knows it and that’s why Ministers are seeking to hide the facts.

“National’s weak bottom line for water quality in our rivers and lakes means that even boating and wading will have a moderate risk of getting a stomach bug or other illness.

Last election National promised independent state of the environment reporting. Three years later, the Environment Minister has failed to get the legislation through Parliament. National's bill allows the Minister to choose the topics to be reported on risking more political interference in future.

“Instead of hiding the problem, the Green Party can fix it. The Green Party’s plan to clean up our rivers would ensure that we have a bottom line for our rivers and lakes that means that everyone can swim at a river near where they live.

For more information:

www.greens.org.nz/cleanrivers

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On Gaza And Burning The Israeli Flag

One of the selling points in New Zealand’s campaign for a temporary seat on the Security Council is that we have a pluckily independent voice to offer on international conflicts.

This image is not entirely self-delusional. When we did occupy a temporary UN Security Council seat in the 1990s, New Zealand was forthright about the need for the international community to actively respond to the Rwanda genocide. On April 14, 1994, New Zealand, Nigeria and the Czech Republic were the only nations to call for a forceful UN intervention to halt the killings. It was a proud moment in the diplomatic record of the Bolger government.

What then, is the current National government doing with respect to the slaughter in Gaza? More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Red Tape: Local Regulations Go Under Microscope

The Government says it is accepting nearly all of the recommendations the Productivity Commission has made on ways to improve local regulations. More>>

ALSO:

Spending Questions: Claudette Hauiti To Step Aside At Election

National Party President Peter Goodfellow confirms that he has received notification from List MP Claudette Hauiti that she plans to step aside at the 20 September election. More>>

ALSO:

EPA: Board Of Inquiry Rejects Basin Flyover By Majority Of 3 To 1

The independent Board of Inquiry delegated to decide on the Basin Bridge Proposal has, by a majority decision (3 to 1), cancelled the Transport Agency’s Notice of Requirement and declined its resource consent applications for the construction, operation and maintenance of a flyover on State Highway 1 in Wellington City... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Non-Apology To Tania Billingsley

The refusal by Prime Minister John Key to issue a personal apology to Tania Billingsley has been accompanied by an array of excuses... Yesterday though, Key’s choice of words indicated that an apology was the last thing on his mind. More>>

ALSO:

Conventions: Winston Peters On The Nation

Winston Peters opens door to standing in East Coast Bays electorate, says it's an "exciting point" and he's thinking about it. "I’ve had a whole lot of people writing to me and calling up and saying ‘why don’t you have a go in East Coast Bays’." More>>

ALSO:

Waitangi Tribunal: Report On The MV Rena

In its interim report, the Waitangi Tribunal has found that the Crown’s conduct in response to the grounding of the MV Rena on Otaiti (Astrolabe) reef breached the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi. More>>

ALSO:

Gaza: Wellington Protest For Palestine Calls For End To Bombing

Around 300 people gathered outside the Israeli Embassy in Wellington on Friday to protest Israel’s occupation of Palestine. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Failure To Prosecute The GCSB

So one hand of the state – the Independent Police Conduct Authority – has now washed the hands of its brother agencies, and declared that all hands are clean. Case closed. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news