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

 


Internet Party Wades in to Fix Sick Waterways

MEDIA RELEASE

July 10, 2014

Internet Party Wades in to Fix Sick Waterways

New Zealand’s waterways will be cleaned up and much higher standards set on water quality in a 10-year plan to be introduced by the Internet Party by 2016.

“Our waterways are in a dire state,” said Internet Party leader Laila Harré. “Action must be taken now at central government level before the problem gets so bad it can’t be fixed.”

Current approaches were having little effect on protecting or restoring water quality, with “bottom lines” on standards set so low as to be worse than useless.

As part of its environment policy, the Internet Party will initiate a public review of what is being done to protect the country’s rivers and lakes. Conducted by the Office of the Commissioner for the Environment, the review will lead to a national 10-year Water Quality Plan to come into effect by 2016 aimed at resolving issues linked to agriculture and industry midway through the next decade.

“When 60 per cent of our country’s rivers are now rated unsafe for swimming it’s clear the alarm bells have been ringing for a long time,” said Ms Harré. “Unfortunately the agencies that are supposed to be sorting the problem out have been sitting on their hands.”

The National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management 2014 announced on July 4, which is supposed to lift the performance of the country's 16 regional councils in combating water pollution, was worth little more than the paper it was written on.

“It’s all talk, no action,” said Ms Harré. “The standards set out are so timid as to be virtually useless. We will set standards much higher and ensure local councils and other agencies responsible for our waterways are held more accountable for reaching and maintaining those standards.”

Claims that tougher water quality standards would badly impact the agriculture sector in particular ignored what was at stake for the country.

“Our lakes and rivers are a national resource that belong to all of us – not just farmers,” said Ms Harré. “Of course we recognise the importance of agriculture but allowing uncontrolled growth at the expense of the environment will cost the entire country.

“This isn’t a time for tradeoffs – we have to get this problem sorted first and foremost and then look how to balance economic growth in a way that’s sustainable.

“Unless we set tougher standards now our precious water will continue to literally go down the toilet.”

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Anzac Day:


Reshuffle: PM Announces Changes To Ministerial Portfolios

Prime Minister Bill English today announced the appointment of Gerry Brownlee as Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nathan Guy as Minister of Civil Defence, Nikki Kaye as Minister of Education and Mark Mitchell as Minister of Defence.

The changes follow the resignations from Cabinet of Hekia Parata and Murray McCully.

In other changes Simon Bridges has been appointed Leader of the House and Nicky Wagner has been made Minister supporting Greater Christchurch Regeneration. More>>

 

Q+A Transcript: CTU Call For 'National Standards' On Wages

‘If you look at countries who do better than us, who pay wages better, who have more competitive industries, more successful economies, they have systems where there are national standards.’ More>>

ALSO:

Health Workers Respond: People's Mental Health Report Released

The People's Mental Health Review reinforces a recent YesWeCare.nz survey of 6,000 health workers, which found nine in 10 believe they don't have the staff or resources to deliver the care Kiwis need when they need it. More>>

ALSO:

More Mental Health:

Energy: Greens Launch Plan For Cheaper And Cleaner Electricity

$112 million for winter warm-up payments to help low-income households cover their power bills • setting a goal for 100 percent renewable electricity by 2030 (in average hydrological conditions) • an investigation into the electricity wholesale market. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Aged-Care Settlement

Until yesterday, a National government has always been the sworn enemy of women seeking justice in the workplace, in the face of gender-based pay discrimination. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news