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Economic progress not green light for water pollution

1 August 2011

Economic progress not green light for water pollution

“It saddens me that in the name of ‘economic progress’ we are prepared to let our rivers and lakes be so badly degraded,” said UnitedFuture environment and outdoors spokesman, Doug Stevens, in reaction to Fish and Game’s report on the state of our rivers and lakes.

“What right have we to spoil these resources and compromise our environmental future for our children,” said Mr Stevens.

“The Cawthron Institute’s determination that the condition of our waterways will ‘continue to decline for several more years and possibly much longer’ is another alarming wake-up call about the deteriorating state of our environment.”

“It is time we said as a nation that no one group has ownership of our environment, no one group can despoil what are national treasures, and no one group can claim the right to ruin recently pristine environments primarily for their own economic benefit.”

“We must start the process of reversing these trends and attitudes immediately. To state that it is OK to wait 30 years is a disgrace, we can do much better.”

“We often state that we are slipping way behind other countries in the economic wealth stakes. Yet how many Kiwis would trade our way of life for one in Singapore or other so called wealthy countries?”

“Maybe we can buy a bigger television cheaper in Hong Kong, maybe we can earn higher wages in the Middle East, but would we be able to enjoy the other things in life that make New Zealand a great place to live and raise a family?”

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“New Zealand has an environment and an outdoor way of life that is admired the world over yet we take it for granted and pay little more than lip-service to it in government policy.”

“Our wealth as a country is not just about how much money we all earn, it is also the right to live in a clean, healthy environment with the ability to get out there and enjoy the recreational pursuits it offers.”

“It is time for Nick Smith and National to look after the interests of all New Zealanders, not just those who work in a milking shed,” said Mr Stevens.

ENDS

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