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

 


Forest & Bird backs PCE’s caution on fracking

November 27 2012

Forest & Bird backs PCE’s caution on fracking

Forest & Bird is urging the authorities to adopt a precautionary approach to fracking because much more needs to be known about its environmental impacts and how New Zealand should regulate the practice before approval for more fracking operations can be considered.

The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment (PCE)’s interim report on fracking has been released today.

Forest & Bird’s concerns around fracking relate particularly to water use, water quality and the disposal of toxic frack waste.

In her report, PCE Jan Wright identifies four parts of the process that, if managed poorly, could lead to contaminants leaking into groundwater. She notes that: “The potential for important aquifers to be contaminated as a result of fracking is very real” - by chemicals or salty water.

She also describes a lax regulatory environment and a lack of clarity around operational practice, and she will issue a further and final report on these issues in 2013.

“Our final views will be guided and heavily informed by the PCE’s further work,” says Forest & Bird Conservation Advocate Claire Browning. “We have real reservations about fracking, and do not support it at this time although we’re open to taking the best independent advice on the issue.

“The other major problem with fracking is that it’s all about sustaining the big oil and gas companies - which is good for that industry - but if it’s allowed to take hold here, it will have very mixed clean energy benefits.”

In embracing fracking, New Zealand would also be at odds with a number of other countries or states which have banned it, or issued moratoriums, Claire Browning says.

The PCE’s report concludes that a moratorium on fracking in NZ is not justified at this time.

“Instead, Dr Wright appears to be leaning towards managing the regulatory framework,” Claire Browning says. “But any new regulation still needs to be governed by a precautionary approach.”

If the PCE’s second report was to recommend that fracking can be managed, the question would still remain about whether this is, overall, the best energy direction for New Zealand, Claire Browning concludes.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

'Tea Break Bill' Passes: Gordon Campbell On Bad Labour Laws And Poor Safety

By co-incidence, one of the prime dangers of the government’s new employment relations law has been underlined by the release of the death and injury statistics among workers at New Zealand ports. These are highly profitable enterprises for the port owners.

The Port of Tauranga for instance, is expecting its current full-year profit to be between $78 million and $83 million and other ports are enjoying similar boom times – but they are also highly dangerous places for the people who work on or around the port premises. At the Port of Tauranga, there have been 26 serious accidents since 2011, and two deaths. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

No Charges: Outcome Of Operation Clover Investigation

Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls in the Waitemata Police district and wider Auckland area... More>>

ALSO:

UNICEF Report: NZ Cautioned On "Stagnating" Child Poverty

An international report by UNICEF has found that child poverty rates in New Zealand have barely changed since 2008, despite similar sized countries significantly reducing child poverty during the recent recession. More>>

ALSO:

Funding Report: Two Pathways For Transport In Auckland

Commissioned by Auckland Council, the group was asked to investigate two possible pathways for raising $300 million per year ($12 billion over 30 years) to pay for the improvements needed to help fix Auckland’s transport system. More>>

ALSO:

Pay Equity: Equal Pay Win In Court Of Appeal

CTU: The Court of Appeal has made a historic decision paving the way for a substantial equal pay claim for aged care workers. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Finishing Line, And Amazon’s Woes

If the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal wasn’t such a serious matter, this would be pretty funny… More>>

ALSO:

TV3 Video: Three Die On Roads Over Labour Weekend

The official holiday period ended at 6am Tuesday, with three deaths on the roads during the Labour Day weekend. More>>

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news