Water

Tits for hands

Nick Smith really does have tits for hands.

John Armstrong explains:

With the countdown to polling day about to be measured in weeks rather than months, Bill English, while keeping his fingers strictly crossed, has had reason to feel increasingly confident that he will not fall victim to the tide of populism which has engulfed neo-liberal leaders like him across the globe.

The opinion polls still have National enjoying just as comfortable a margin over its rivals as had been the case before the change in prime ministers.

The economy continues to hum along nicely. There is no discernible mood for change.

Enter Nick Smith. The Environment Minister’s extraordinarily inept handling of the acutely sensitive matters arising from the export of bottled water invited the very backlash that English would have thought he was escaping.   Read more »

Want proof Bill English is a dickhead, here it is

The opposition and Media party have been attacking water exports.

Predictably, Bill English has quivered when confronted with tweets and outrage from the perpetually outraged.

The Government has written to its advisory group on water, telling it to investigate putting a price on exported water and to report back by the end of the year.

“We’ve written to the technical advisory group that’s working on water allocation, and asking them to include in their considerations the issues around export water”, Prime Minister Bill English said on Monday afternoon.

It comes amidst public and political pressure in recent weeks over the exporting of New Zealand water for sale overseas.

“There is real public concern about foreign companies access to water, there’s also a long-held, deep seated view among New Zealanders that no one owns it and it’s free,” Mr English said.

“We’d want to step through any process carefully so that’s why we’ve written a letter today.”

Read more »

Some pertinent facts on bottled water exports

You’d think we were down to our last drop of fresh water and some evil capitalist bastards were selling it all offshore, especially to people with chinky sounding names.

Arts, lifestyle and travel blogger, David Farrar, sheds some light the subject.

All the normal suspects are calling for bottled water exports to be banned, implying the level of exports is a threat to our water supply.

Here’s the five key numbers:   Read more »

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Gareth should stick to killing cats

Gareth Morgan should stick to killing cats, but somehow I bet he’s never killed a single one and his campaign is just like everything else he does and is just slogans.

He’s decided to wade into the water debate. As usual starts off good then he goes off on a Maori rant.

Around New Zealand today there will be protests about fresh water. And rightly so, our once wonderful rivers and lakes are now degraded, particularly in lowland areas. To add insult to injury, businesses are allowed to take what little pure water is left in our aquifers and export it for profit. The only cost they face is getting the consent.

The man is an idiot. He makes it sound like the only clean water left is being taken offshore.    Read more »

Nick Smith and his bullshit over water will cost National votes

Looks swimmable to me

Nick Smith has tits for hands. Everything he touches turns out to be a disaster.

His latest cock-up is to change the goal posts on water quality and raise the nutrient allowances while claiming at the same time that he has cut them in half.

If I was a water campaigner I’d find a body of water that meets his swimmable standard and that is also a health hazard and challenge the dickhead to have a swim in it.

That is precisely what has happened.

A waterway that Environment Minister Dr Nick Smith once deemed “impossible” to improve to a swimmable condition would be considered swimmable under proposed new standards.

Several other waterways – including dry shingle beds and rivers with toxic algal blooms – would also meet the swimmable standard, despite clearly being unsuitable for swimming.   Read more »

Fenton Jong-un Wilson rises from the dead

You’d have thought that Fenton “Jong-un” Wilson would have shown a bit of humility after him and his team were spanked in the local body elections.

But no, even though he is a vanquished political zombie he just has to open his great big gob:

Regional councillor Fenton Wilson has challenged Hastings Mayor Lawrence Yule to be open with his council’s spend on the investigation and Government Inquiry into the water crisis.

This call comes as Hawke’s Bay’s regional authority faces public scrutiny for shelling out $445,000 on an investigation into breaches of consent made by the Hastings District Council in the wake of the Havelock North water event.

HBRC was set to take the district council to court over the breaches, however its Chief Executive Andrew Newman withdrew the charges last year and instead issued the council with two fines totalling $1,000.

To date the regional council has spent in excess of $1 million on both the investigation and the Inquiry.   Read more »

Tamati Coffey opens mouth with predictable results

Watch as the stupid rolls forth.

Read more »

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Any minute now a taniwha is going to turn up

A Whangarei hapū are angry over sale of Porotī spring water to China:

While the ownership of water is yet to be determined, local government is allowing it to be sold commercially overseas.

That is why local hapū are up in arms over an Auckland-based company selling water from Poroti Springs to China.

Poroti hapū are angry that Auckland-based Company Zodiac Holdings Limited has been given the go ahead to sell their water supply.

So a New Zealand company, owned by a New Zealander (see company office), is exporting to China and local Maori are angry.

“Now Zodiac have up to two and a half cubic metres a day and they want to sell it to China so we don’t get ten cents and there’s no revenue whatsoever for our hapū.  Not that we want to sell the water but we just want to participate and share.  We actually have to pay for our own water,” says Ruka.

Read more »

Auckland Council admit there is a problem with water infrastructure as well

Watercare have taken offence at my assertions that Auckland infrastructure is stuffed and has 10% capacity remaining in it.

That’s not necessarily their fault – they inherited a legacy of poor management from the seven former Councils and they have a limited capacity to raise funds for more expenditure.

Now they say that the limited capacity isn’t really an issue because they have lots of expenditure planned.

Except that the planned infrastructure is spread over decades and, importantly, it doesn’t fix the issue today. It doesn’t even fix it in the next 5 or 10 years.

Auckland Council even admit that the current infrastructure is stuffed.

Only last week a presentation made by Council’s own Manager for Growth and Infrastructure Strategy, Dawne Mackay, states clearly that they have issues:   Read more »

Garner loses his bottle

It has to be one of Prime Minister John Key’s most mocked and meaningless phrases – that “no-one owns the water”.

What complete drivel – no one may own it – but a select few multi-national companies are making billions from it.

We’re being screwed. More on that shortly.

I certainly pay for the water I use. It’s not free at all.  [ Whaleoil debunked this already – sigh ]

Every month I get a bill for my water usage in my Auckland home from Watercare, which is a council-run organisation.

Last month’s bill, for an average daily use of 700 litres, came to $190.

That was a big month for us. This is not just a fixed charge for reticulation, this is a charge for how much water we use.

In Wellington I was never charged. No charge in Christchurch either. It’s all covered as part of your rates.

Which brings me to all of us being screwed.

Why should I be paying for a resource that we effectively give away to foreign companies (allowing them to make a massive profit?)

For a start we should be bottling it ourselves. But of course we’re not. We missed that boat. We’ve handed the water over to these creative and smart multi-nationals to rape our resource. And they’re good at it.

Companies from America, China, Japan and Latvia all bottle our water here – effectively for free – and sell it to the world.

We should probably be applauding these companies for their vision and foresight. But we haven’t exactly stood in their way.

Chinese company Oravida paid just $526 last year for a resource consent to draw up to 400,000 litres of water a day from the Otakiri aquifer in the Bay of Plenty.

The company can take 146 million litres a year until 2026.

The local council confirmed this week that Oravida has paid just $1503 for the consents since 1992.

It’s happening in Ashburton too but it’s all top secret – which is an insult to locals.

A company has paid $8 million for a block of former public land and gets a 30-year resource consent to draw 40 billion litres of pure artesian water.

They will make hundreds of millions of dollars – no wonder locals feel like they are increasingly becoming ‘tenants in their own country’.

Coca-Cola – which has annual revenues of more than $60 billion – takes water from a pure spring near Putaruru in the Waikato for its Pump brand. Read more »

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