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

 


Greens help smaller towns upgrade sewage systems

5 September 2014

Greens help smaller towns upgrade sewage systems

The Green Party today announced it will invest $20 million per year for ten years to help small towns and communities upgrade sewage treatment systems.

The announcement is the fourth component of the Party’s environmental priority this election: rivers clean enough for swimming and beaches safe from oil spills.

Many small communities struggle to pay for the infrastructure required to keep sewage out of their rivers. That is why the Green Party is re-establishing the Sanitary Works Subsidy Scheme (SWSS) for smaller communities, but with stronger environmental criteria. The SWSS scheme was established in 2002 but National wound it up, with the last funds allocated in 2013.

The key points of the Green Party’s scheme are:
• $20 million per year for ten years will be allocated to help communities upgrade sewage treatment systems;
• Priority will be given to communities where there are health risks posed by the community's existing treatment, disposal and discharge system;
• The maximum subsidy for eligible capital works will be 50 percent for communities up to 2000, reducing proportionally to 10 percent for communities of 10,000;
• Priority will be given for projects that find land-based solutions for sewage.

“Families should be able to head down to their local swimming hole or beach and jump right in the water without worrying about getting sick,” said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman.

“We must stop National from using our rivers as drains, and establish or upgrade wastewater systems where needed.

“Some of our waterways are being used as drains for partially treated sewage. The Green Party will re-instate a Government funding scheme to help councils upgrade their sewage treatment systems and implement land-based disposal solutions.

“Councils such as Hurunui in Canterbury have called on the Government to re-instate the scheme. The Green Party has listened because we recognise that smaller communities with a low rating base need help to upgrade their systems.

“Too many small communities with few ratepayers can’t afford to fix their sewage treatment systems. Our rivers shouldn’t have to pay the price for a lack of Government support.

“National is turning a blind eye to how the faecal and nutrient pollution from wastewater discharges are ruining our rivers and lakes.

“The major decline in our rivers and lakes over the past decade has largely been due to agricultural intensification. However, towns and cities have contributed to the pollution problem and need better wastewater systems.

“There are over 425,000 kilometres of rivers in New Zealand. Rivers are our lifeblood – culturally, spiritually, and economically and it’s in all our interests to make them clean and healthy.”

Dr Norman said that in the run up to the election the Green Party would announce further policy in its three priorities area: rivers clean enough to swim in again and beaches safe from oil spills; ensuring every child has enough to thrive; and a smarter greener economy that benefits every New Zealander.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The Northland By-Election

Supposedly, Winston Peters’ victory in Northland has exposed the simmering dissatisfaction with the government that exists out in the provinces. Yet it remains to be seen whether this defeat will have much significance – and not simply because if and when Labour resumes business as usual in the Northland seat at the next election, Peters’ hold on it could simply evaporate.

On Saturday, National’s electorate vote declined by 7,000 votes, as the 9,000 majority it won last September turned into a 4,000 vote deficit – mainly because Labour supporters followed the nod and wink given by Labour leader Andrew Little, and voted tactically for Peters. In the process, Labour’s vote went down from nearly 9,000 votes six months ago, to only 1,315 on Saturday. More>>

 
 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Climate: Ministers Exclude Emissions From ‘Environment Reporting'

The National Party Government has today revealed that the national environmental report topics for this year will, incredibly, exclude New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions, the Green Party said today. More>>

ALSO:

No Retrial: Freedom At Last For Teina Pora

The Māori Party is relieved that the Privy Council has cleared the final legal hurdle for Teina Pora who was wrongfully convicted of murder and sent to prison for 22 years. More>>

ALSO:

Germanwings Crash: Privacy Act Supports Aviation Safeguards In New Zealand

Reports that German privacy laws may have contributed to the Germanwings air crash have prompted New Zealand’s Privacy Commissioner to reassure the public that the Privacy Act is no impediment to medical practitioners notifying appropriate authorities to a pilot’s health concerns. More>>

ALSO:

Treaty: Taranaki Iwi Ngāruahine Settles Treaty Claims For $67.5mln

The settlement includes a $13.5 million payment the government made in June 2013, as well as land in the Taranaki region. The settlement also includes four culturally significant sites, the Waipakari Reserve, Te Kohinga Reserve, Te Ngutu o te Manu and Te Poho o Taranaki. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Funeral In Asia, The Northland By-Election, And News Priorities

Supposedly, New Zealand’s destiny lies in Asia, and that was one of Foreign Minister Murray McCully’s rationales for his bungled reforms at MFAT. OK. So, if that’s the case why didn’t Prime Minister John Key attend the state funeral on Sunday of Singapore’s founding leader Lee Kuan Yew? More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf Satire: Not Flag-Waving; Flag-Drowning

The panel choosing the flag options has no visual artists at all. Now, I’ve kerned the odd ligature in my time and I know my recto from my French curve so I thought I’d offer a few suggestions before they get past their depth. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA Reports: Significant Problems In Police Custody

In releasing two reports today, the Independent Police Conduct Authority has highlighted a number of significant problems with the way in which Police deal with people who are detained in Police cells. More>>

ALSO:

Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security: Inquiry Into GCSB Pacific Allegations

The complaints follow recent public allegations about GCSB activities. The complaints, and these public allegations, raise wider questions regarding the collection, retention and sharing of communications data. More>>

ALSO:

TPPA Investment Leak: "NZ Surrender To US" On Corporates Suing Governments

Professor Jane Kelsey: ‘As anticipated, the deal gives foreign investors from the TPPA countries special rights, and the power to sue the government in private offshore tribunals for massive damages if new laws, or even court decisions, significantly affected their bottom line’. More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf: The Myth Of Steven Joyce

Gordon Campbell: The myth of competence that’s been woven around Steven Joyce – the Key government’s “Minister of Everything” and “Mr Fixit” – has been disseminated from high-rises to hamlets, across the country... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news