Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Conserving decorative timber in the Beehive

Press Release
...from Brian Swale, campaigner for sustainable forestry.

Special Purpose Timber Species in NZ and the $40 million re-fit of Parliament Buildings; March 2001.

ANEGRE ( Aningeria robusta; Sapotaceae, 1934, is a tree about 30 metres tall) and is traded under the names Tanganika, Mukali, Grogoli, English tawa, agnegre, aninguerie, aniegre, landosan, mukali, kali, osan, mutoke, mukangu, muna and Tasmanian walnut. It grows in tropical Africa from western Ivory Coast right through to Tanzania and Kenya in the east.

The stable, light-coloured attractive timber it yields is in widespread use throughout Europe and North America, and several New Zealand specialist timber suppliers stock it as panelling. It looks like tawa.

Apparently, there is very widespread use of tawa in the Beehive - from corridors to lobbies, to Ministers’ rooms. The manner of use is as solid wood small panels and detailing, and larger panels of tawa veneer; all finished with a clear varnish. The clear varnish would display to best advantage the flawless surface and pleasing grain of this light straw-coloured New Zealand indigenous timber.

I am told that apart from the surfaces of some panels being a little grubby after a couple of decades exposure to the goings-on of the parliamentary population, they were generally in excellent condition.

This raises an obvious question. Clearly there was widespread satisfaction with the performance, both visually and physically, of tawa. If this were not the case, the replacement would have been with something quite different. The question is, if the present Government is so much in favour of conservation, especially of indigenous species, WHY ARE THE PANELS BEING REPLACED AT ALL?

There are plenty of craftsmen who could clean, sand and re-varnish the existing panels so that they would look like new.

These excellent existing tawa panels could be conserved to serve the country for another 40 years.

Secondly, this episode highlights that New Zealand has neither the policy nor the means to carry one out, to develop a sustainable resource of exotic special purpose timber species. One WAS initiated in 1980 after the 1979 Special Purpose Species Workshop examined the timber supply situation, identified suitable species, and government set about establishing the resource. But of course this went down the tubes when the Forest Service was destructured in 1987.

Thirdly, in respect of sustainably produced special purpose timbers from NZ native forests, this episode highlights the shortsightedness of a dogma- based government policy that had, in 1999, potentially in perpetuity, $2 million of rimu logs being produced sustainably from 9,000 ha, and $32 million of beech logs to be produced sustainably from 98,000 ha, all in the West Coast; scrapped. Scrapped in order to satisfy specious promises made to distant, urban and semi-urban marginal electorates. New Zealand imports currently $NZ 1,104 million per annum of forest products, timber and wooden furniture imports being $NZ 153 million of this. The hypocrisy contained in this policy is clear and shameful.

This whole episode demonstrates woolly thinking, unclear goals and poor policy-making by the government. New Zealand deserves better.

ENDS

Brian Swale is a forestry professional who supports the practice of environmentally sound sustainable forestry. He can be contacted at http://www.caverock.net.nz/~bj/beech/ and 03-326-7447.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Legal Issues: Gordon Campbell On The Commerce Commission Fuel Report

Yesterday’s interim Commerce Commission report on the fuel industry will do nothing to endear the major oil companies to the New Zealand public.

Apoparently, the fuel industry is an oligopoly where the Big Three (BP, Mobil and Z) that import 90% of this country’s fuel also control the supply, pricing, profit margins etc etc, from wharf to petrol pump, thereby all but throttling genuine competition at every stage along the way. More>>

 

Leaving Contract Early: KiwiBuild Programme Losing Another Top Boss

Ms O'Sullivan began a six-month contract as head of KiwiBuild Commercial in February, but the Housing Ministry has confirmed she has resigned and will depart a month early to take up a new job. More>>

ALSO:

Proposed National Policy Statement: Helping Our Cities Grow Up And Out

“We need a new approach to planning that allows our cities to grow up, especially in city centres and around transport connections. We also have to allow cities to expand in a way that protects our special heritage areas, the natural environment and highly productive land." More>>

ALSO:

Ombudsman's Report: Ngāpuhi Elder 'Shocked' By Conditions At Ngawha Prison

A prominent Ngāpuhi elder is shocked to find inmates at Ngawha Prison are denied water and forced to relieve themselves in the exercise yard... Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier has released a report highly critical of conditions at the Northland prison. More>>

ALSO:

Promises: Independent Election Policy Costing Unit A Step Closer

The creation of an entity to provide political parties with independent and non-partisan policy costings is a step closer today, according to Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Associate Finance Minister James Shaw. More>>

ALSO:

School's In: Primary And Intermediate Principals Accept New Offer

Primary and intermediate school principals have voted to accept a new settlement from the Ministry of Education, which includes entrenched pay parity with secondary principals. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA On 'Rawshark' Investigation: Multiple Police Failings In Hager Searches Confirmed

The Independent Police Conduct Authority has found that the Police's unlawful search of Nicky Hager's property in October 2014 resulted from an unwitting neglect of duty and did not amount to misconduct by any individual officer... More>>

ALSO:

Broadcasting Standards: Decisions On Coverage Of Mosque Attacks

The Authority upheld one of these complaints, finding that the use of extensive excerpts from the alleged attacker’s livestream video on Sky News New Zealand had the potential to cause significant distress to audiences in New Zealand, and particularly to the family and friends of victims, and the wider Muslim community. More>>

PM's Post-Cab: Bad Mail

Cabinet was updated on the process around prisoners sending mail, following the accused Christchurch gunman sending letters that "should have been stopped". All mail of "high concern prisoners" will now be checked by a specialist team and a changes to the legal criteria for witholding mail are expecting to go to a cabinet committee in this parliamentary session. More>>

Welfare: Ongoing Drug-Test Sanctions Contradicts Govt’s Rhetoric

Reports that two-thirds of beneficiaries who fail drug tests are still having their benefit sanctioned contradicts the Government’s so-called health approach to drugs. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels