MUST READ: TDB Investigation into what is happening in our water

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On 7 September, 2008, John Key said that “…we should always measure a Government’s environmental rhetoric against its environmental record.”

Indeed we should.

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70 percent pure NZ

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“…We should always measure a Government’s environmental rhetoric against its environmental record.” – John Key,

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Vital Statistics 1

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In September 2008, one month before the general election, National’s leader addressed the party’s “Bluegreen* Forum“, asserting;

“What global Leaders know, and what the National Party knows, is that environmentalism and a commitment to economic growth must go hand in hand.  We should be wary of anyone who claims that one can or should come without the other.  And we should always measure a Government’s environmental rhetoric against its environmental record.

In the years ahead it will be increasingly important that New Zealand marries its economic and environmental policies.  Global climate change awareness, resource shortages, and increasing intolerance of environmental degradation will give environmental policy renewed relevance on the world stage.  

New Zealand will need policies that make the most of this trend.  This will be important for our trade prospects and for the way in which we grow our economy.   I’m confident that with the right policies New Zealand can make its environmental credentials an important part of its comparative advantage.”

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Vital Statistics 2

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ref

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Nearly eight years later, Key’s fine speech on environmental protection has come to nought. Nearly eight years of National governance and – whilst ostensibly implementing “bluegreen” policies – we have recently witnessed the worst case of water contamination in modern New Zealand history;

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havelock north water contamination

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Until the evening of 19 August, people could only guess at the source of the campylobacter contamination. Though many – if not most – New Zealanders already held a suspicion at the back of their minds.

That suspicion became readily apparent;

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Campylobacter most likely from livestock - Yule

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According to the 19 August Radio NZ report – updated at 6.33PM;

Preliminary results from the tests carried out on the contaminated water have shown, while several strains of the bacteria were present, ruminants were the most likely source.

Wild fowl was also a possible source, but the report from Environmental Science and Research (ESR) said poultry was unlikely.

The institute said more analysis would be carried out next week before a final assessment of the source could be made.

Hastings Mayor Lawrence Yule said it was likely the previous weekend’s flooding had swept faeces from livestock into the water supply.

“It’s very hard to explain it in any other way. I’ve been a farmer, I’m an engineer, and it looks likely that somehow that has occurred.”

The chooks may be off the hook – but it seems that the cows have come home to roost (or whatever cows do when they “come home”); our dirty little secret is out in the open. We are a polluted nation, awash in animal faeces and the billions upon billions of microscopic organisms that inhabit each piece of animal dung.

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Vital Statistics 3

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ref

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In December 2011, three years after Key addressed the so-called “Bluegreen Forum” and promised that  “National will never forget that New Zealand’s outstanding physical environment is a key part of what makes our country special. Kiwis proudly value our forests, mountains, rivers, lakes, and oceans” – there were already suggestions that dairy farmers  were not compliant in keeping their livestock out of  waterways;

Dairy farmers have been accused of telling porkies to Fonterra about whether they are keeping stock out of waterways.

An Agriculture Ministry audit of the Clean Streams Accord shows that half of farms have complete stock exclusion.

This contrasts with Fonterra’s claim – based on farmers’ self-appraisal – that 84 per cent of farms are compliant.

Fish and Game leapt on the disparity, revealed yesterday in the accord’s report for the 2010-11 year.

Chief executive Bryce Johnson said it raised questions about the accuracy of all the other performance targets reported by the dairy industry to the public, politicians and the government’s Land and Water Forum.

“It’s a woeful indictment on the legitimacy of the accord, on dairying’s environmental performance over the past decade and particularly the industry’s claim that self-policing is the way towards achieving improved water quality,” he said.

At the time, Fonterra’ milk supply general manager Steve Murphy attempted to ‘spin’ the dairy industry’s way out of the discrepancy;

“Some aspects [of the ministry audit] are factual but there are also differences in the way measurements were made.”

Murphy even tried to make light of the situation with this bad-taste remark;

“We can all pooh-pooh the results but the reality is that progress is being made.”

Federated Farmers dairy chairman, Willy Leferink, simply dismissed the report out-of-hand;

“If you look closely at that report you can pick holes in it, but to me, it also sends a clear message to get our respective farms in order.”

At the same time, environmental scientist, Dr Mike Joy, condemned the so-called “clean, green” image that New Zealand was perpetuating.  At the 2011 Forest & Bird annual general meeting presentation, Dr Joy  called   our “100% Pure” advertising campaign  misleading and cited the data;

  • Almost all river quality monitoring sites show a worsening trend. 43% of them regularly fail to meet bathing standards, in many instances because faecal contamination levels are too high. Almost half our lakes are polluted by excess nutrients, or over-run by invasive fish. Sediment chokes all but one harbour, and estuaries.
  • By 2050, if the trend continues, we would have extinguished native fish in New Zealand. Five threatened species are commercially harvested; none have any legal protection.
  • 18,000-30,000 people contract waterborne diseases every year, from microbial contamination. Of the 70 “best” Waikato waterways, e-coli in more than 50 of them exceeds contact recreation levels.

Our esteemed Dear Leader responded with his usual facile glibness;

“Well, that might be Mike Joy’s view, but I don’t share that view. Like lawyers, I can give you one that will provide you with a counter-theory.”

When questioned further by the Dominion Post, Key’s tax-payer funded spokesperson responded with a curt;

“The prime minister does not share the view of Mike Joy, and has no further comment to make.”

Eight months after Key’s dismissal of Dr Joy’s warnings,  government scientists from NIWA were pointing out the dangerously degraded state of our waterways;

Water in Lake Horowhenua is so toxic that it could kill a small child, regional councillors have been told.

In certain conditions, and if cyanobacteria were present, the lake could be lethal to animals and small children, a scientist with the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, Dr Max Gibbs, told Horizons Regional Council’s environment committee yesterday.

Dr Gibbs was presenting a selection of initiatives to help improve the water quality of the Levin lake, which is floating just off the bottom of the New Zealand lake-water quality rankings, sitting at 107 out of 116.

As our waterways were becoming toxic enough to potentially kill animals and small children, Key made what was perhaps the lamest, most pathetic rationale to justify continuing to use the “100% Pure” branding for our country;

“It’s like saying ‘McDonald’s, I’m loving it’ – I’m not sure every moment that someone’s eating McDonald’s they’re loving it . . . it’s the same thing with 100% Pure. It’s got to be taken with a bit of a pinch of salt.”

John Key was likening our environment to McDonalds – one of the world’s premier unhealthy fast-food producers.

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mcshit_by_hornedquad-d32d7nv

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Perhaps Key’s remarks were more appropriate than he realised at the time. At least he wasn’t blaming Labour or welfare beneficiaries this time;

“If . . . we should be 100% Pure and . . . there’s no economic activity . . . cavemen burning fires has a environmental impact.”

Worse was to come for Dr Joy’s admonitions to our poor environment track record.

On 21 November 2012, corporate lobbyist, Mark Unsworth, sent this scathing email, attacking the scientist;

From: Mark Unsworth [mark@sul.co.nz]
Sent: Wednesday, 21 November 2012 12:15 a.m.
To: Joy, Mike
Subject: Ego Trip

Dear Dr Joy
Is your ego so great that you feel the need to sabotage all the efforts made by those promoting tourism in NZ because of your passionate views on the environment ?
You have the right to hold strong views but you ,as an academic whose salary is paid for by others taxes, must also act responsibly .
Letting your ego run riot worldwide in the manner you did can only lead to lower levels of inbound tourism.

You may not care given your tenure in a nice comfy University lounge ,but to others this affects income and jobs.
Give that some thought next time you feel the need to see your name in print in New York .And possibly think of changing your name from Joy to Misery-its more accurate
Cheers
Mark Unsworth”

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Corporate lobbyist, Mark Unsworth

Corporate lobbyist, Mark Unsworth

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Unsworth’s hysterical outburst was a crass attempt to gag the scientist-messenger. At the same time the corporate lobbyist was demanding Dr Joy’s silence, the Ministry for the Environment released a report warning that half of New Zealand rivers were too dangerously polluted to swim in;

More than half of monitored recreational sites on our rivers are unsafe for swimming, a report has revealed.

The Ministry for the Environment’s latest report card – issued weeks before summer weather sends Kiwis flocking to the water – has left opposition parties questioning New Zealand’s 100 per cent pure brand.

The results showed water quality was poor or very poor at 52 per cent of monitored river sites.

A further 28 per cent were graded “fair” – with a risk of illness for those swimming there.

Only 20 per cent of monitored river recreation sites were graded good or very good.

Health effects from swallowing water tainted with faecal micro-organisms or other bacteria can be unpleasant. They include diarrhoea or vomiting, and infections of the eye, ear, nose and throat.

The report card canvassed sampling from 210 freshwater beaches, including lakeside areas, and 248 coastal beaches used for recreation that had been assigned grades based on monitoring data acquired over five summers.

It is unknown if Unsworth also sent a similar vitriolic email to the Ministry for the Environment.

Attempts in Parliament to clean up our waterways have been blocked by National and other parties.

In October 2012, Green MP Catherine Delahunty’s private member’s bill – Resource Management (Restricted Duration of Certain Discharge and Coastal Permits) Amendment Bill – was drawn from the Ballot. The Bill would have reduced the amount of time that discharges could be made into our rivers”in exceptional circumstances”. (Yes, industries are allowed to discharge waste into our waterways! Who knew!?)

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Greens MP, Catherine Delahunty, at the Selwyn River

Greens MP, Catherine Delahunty, at the Selwyn River

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As reported in the NZ Herald in October 2012;

Green MP Catherine Delahunty said her member’s bill, which has passed its first reading, sought to close a loophole in the Resource Management Act that allowed contaminating discharges with toxic effects and discolouration of waters under “exceptional circumstances”.

Ms Delahunty said the phrase included no timeframe, and had been used to justify long-term pollution of some waterways and coastal areas.

Her bill would limit its use to five years.

As further reported by Forest & Bird;

The most well-known case of the term “exceptional circumstances” being used loosely is where the Bay of Plenty Regional Council has allowed the Tasman Mill in Kawerau to discharge wastewater into the Tarawera River since 1995. In 2010, the mill used this clause of the RMA once more to obtain resource consents to keep discharging for another 25 years. That is, under section 107 (2)(a) of the Act, the mill has been consented to discharge to the river for a total of 42 years This is clearly not an exceptional circumstance but a case of a business-as-usual approach being used to exploit this loophole in the RMA.

The Bill passed it’s first reading and was sent to the Local Government and Environment Committee.

At it’s second reading it was voted down;

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Ayes 51                                       New Zealand Labour 34; Green Party 14; Māori Party 2; Mana 1.
Noes 68                                       NZ National 59; NZ First 7; ACT  1; United Future 1.

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It was disappointing and disturbing to see NZ First voting against Catherine Delahunty’s Bill.  At the time, NZ First justified voting down strengthening environmental protection for our waterways by invoking commercial imperatives;

“It was also interesting to note that very big signals were given in terms of the potential impact that this bill would have on the wider New Zealand economic development situation. If resource consents and permits of this nature were restricted to only 5 years for exceptional discharges, it would have a very adverse detrimental effect on investment and industry in this country. In the situation with Norske Skog, it had, just in the last few years, invested $50 million in a major new machine at the paper plant there—a very significant investment in a major piece of equipment. Had Norske Skog not had the extended permits, the parent company internationally would probably have made the decision not to invest that $50 million in New Zealand.”

As then-Co-Leader of the Green Party, Dr Russell Norman has pointed out;

“The natural environment makes New Zealand a great place to live. And it underpins our economy – tourists come here for the 100% Pure image, and Chinese parents feed their kids New Zealand infant formula because it’s clean, green and safe.

So you’d have to be a mug to attack the environment. Or a Cabinet minister, because since the last election that’s exactly what they’ve been up to.

They are using taxpayer money to subsidise the intensification of dairying agribusiness, intensification that will lead to more water pollution. According to the Ministry for the Environment most monitored rivers aren’t safe for swimming already.

Swimming in a river should be a birth right of New Zealand kids but it’s rapidly becoming a quaint historical oddity- “Hey dad did you really swim in that half drained contaminated cesspool when you were a kid?”

And sure agribusiness makes a quick buck selling milk powder to China, but what happens when Chinese parents find out that our rivers are becoming just as polluted as theirs? Will they still pay a premium for New Zealand food?

No environment, no economy.”

National’s response?

In March this year – as disaster loomed five months away for Havelock North – Environment Minister Nick Smith exposed National’s “Bluegreen” stance;

“I do not think a legal requirement for every water body in New Zealand to be swimmable is practical.  Our ambition is for a lot more areas to be swimmable… but we want to be practical.”

In effect, Smith admitted his government’s failure and surrendered New Zealand to a future of dirty rivers; dying lakes and undrinkable water.

Little wonder that stock belonging to Chief Justice Dame Sian Elias her businessman husband, Hugh Fletcher, were permitted to freely wade through Canterbury’s Lake Taylor, Hurunui river, and Lake Sumner despite abatement notices being issued  by ECan. An incident in January this year was repeated several times.

In one image, a cow was photographed wading through a river, a stream of brown ‘matter’ emanating from it’s rear;

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cow in river - dame sian elias

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The Station’s then-farm manager, Brian Anderson, called environmental rules  “ridiculous”.

Anderson’s lack of concern is by no means unique. Whether it be Key or Nick Smith, there is a distinctive short-sightedness that fails to see even into the very-near future when it comes to the negative implications of our dairy-intensive agri-economy.

The attitude of many (most?) in the farming sector, and their political-wing (the National Party), is to turn a blind eye to known environmental degradation; parrot “green” policies when under public or media scrutiny; and hope for the best.

None of which has come out well for this country.

Even the far-right blog, Whaleoil and it’s unhinged owner,  appears to belatedly understand the simple equation; Shit-Out (of the cow), Shit In (to our waterways);

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the greens said this would happen - havelock north - water contamination

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On 7 September, 2008, John Key said that “…we should always measure a Government’s environmental rhetoric against its environmental record.

Indeed we should.

Thus far, by every measurement, including the polluted waterways of New Zealand and contaminated drinking water in Havelock North – National’s “environmental rhetoric” does not match its “environmental record”.

National has abrogated it’s responsibilities to safeguard our environment. Instead of placing priority on cleaning up our waterways, this is no longer “practical”, according to Nick Smith.

Instead, National has settled for second best.

When it comes to drinking water, second best is nowhere near good enough.

The frightening aspect to National’s indifference to our water quality and wider environmental concerns is not just the contamination of our water-supply. Nor our rivers, half of which are no longer of a swimmable standard.

No, the truly worrying possibility is when the international media will suddenly realise what has been happening in “clean, green” Aotearoa, and that our “100% Pure” brand is a clever scam.

When the documentaries exposing this lie begin to appear on TV screens in Britain, Europe, North America, and elsewhere,  our entire tourism sector will face a crisis. It will be a crisis not unlike the 1080 extortion-scare which impacted on our dairy exports to China two years ago,

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Industry counts cost of 1080 threat

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As the Radio NZ report said;

Dairy products are New Zealand’s biggest export earner with $14 billion’s worth leaving the country’s shores each year, and the industry says reputation is everything.

Dairy Companies Association of New Zealand chairman Malcolm Bailey said the threat cost the country millions of dollars.

The international community is already becoming aware that our reputation for being a supposedly “egalitarian” society is a myth and nothing more;

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New Zealand's most shameful secret We have normalised child poverty

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It is only a matter of time before the first foreign journalists and camera crews arrive on our shores. Only a matter of time before our dis-coloured rivers; semi-dead lakes; and cows wading and excreting into our waterways is all filmed. Only a matter of time before inhabitants of Havelock North are interviewed. Only a matter of time before a request for interviews with ministers land on their desks.

Only a matter of time.

Who will John Key blame then?

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***Update**

Water contamination has spread to Hastings and Flaxmere;

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TV1 News - Hastings, Flaxmere water supply found contaminated as infections rise

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The TV1 report  also confirms the Radio NZ story that farm animal-faeces was most likely the source of contamination;

Dr Snee says the results of yesterday’s DNA testing of the contaminated water were inconclusive – meaning authorities are no closer to getting answers to just how the water became contaminated.

The tests show bovine contamination, so most likely to be from sheep, cattle or deer.

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Addendum1

*  The Bluegreen Forum is the National Party’s pseudo-environmental “wing”. Realising that environmental protection was a critical ‘Achilles Heal’ of the National Party, the Bluegreen Forum was created so “that  environmental issues should not be monopolised by those on the left of the political spectrum“, as Key asserted in September 2008.

The “Bluegreens” are good at parroting environmental rhetoric.

By coincidence, or by supreme irony, blue-green is also the colour  of cyanobacteria, which can be a toxic consequence of heavily polluted waterways. According to Wikipedia;

Aquatic cyanobacteria are known for their extensive and highly visible blooms that can form in both freshwater and marine environments. The blooms can have the appearance of blue-green paint or scum.

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References

Scoop media: John Key – Speech to the Bluegreens Forum

New Zealand Yearbook: 1984

New Zealand Yearbook: 2008

TV3: Campylobacter confirmed in Havelock North water, 4100 affected

NewstalkZB: Thousands affected by Havelock North water contamination

Fairfax media: Inquiry to be launched into Havelock North’s contaminated water

TV1 News: Hard-hit Havelock North residents ‘want answers’ over water contamination

Radio NZ: Govt rejects call for Hawke’s Bay water emergency declaration

Radio NZ: Campylobacter most likely from livestock – Yule

Statistics NZ: Agricultural Production Statistics: June 2015

Dominion Post: Fish and Game hits out at farmers

Forest & Bird: 2011 AGM – Dr Mike Joy

Dominion Post: Ecologist at odds with PM on 100% Pure NZ

Dominion Post: Worries over toxicity of lake

Fairfax media: ‘100% Pure’ is like McDonald’s ad, says Key

Facebook:  Russel Norman – Mark Unsworth’s email

NZ Herald: No swimming – 52% impure NZ rivers

NZ Herald: Bill aims to plug pollution loophole

Forest & Bird: Resource Management Amendment Bill

Parliament: Vote – Resource Management (Restricted Duration of Certain Discharge and Coastal Permits) Amendment Bill — Second Reading

NZ First: Resource Management (Restricted Duration of Certain Discharge and Coastal Permits) Amendment Bill — Second Reading

RadioLive: Nats are sacrificing our environment… for what?

Fairfax media: Making every water body swimmable is ‘not practical’ – Nick Smith

Fairfax media: Cattle belonging to Chief Justice Dame Sian Elias’ repeat offenders

Fairfax media: More complaints about top judge Dame Sian Elias’ cows, but farm says rules ‘ridiculous’

Radio NZ: Industry counts cost of 1080 threat

The Guardian: New Zealand’s most shameful secret – ‘We have normalised child poverty’

TV1 News: Hastings, Flaxmere water supply found contaminated as infections rise

National: Bluegreen Forum

Wikipedia: Cyanobacteria

Other Blogs

Gordon Campbell on Havelock North’s water issues

Pundit:  Mike Joy answers the PM, with hard facts (2011)

The Civilian: Hastings gastro outbreak just marketing stunt to promote new documentary about Hastings gastro outbreak

The New Zealand story: 100% pooer! (2012)

The Standard: The Friday dump on Havelock North

Previous related blogposts

John Key’s “pinch of salt” style of telling the truth

Johnny’s Report Card – National Standards Assessment y/e 2012 – environment

When spin doctors go bad

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milk prices-pollution

 

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68 Comments

  1. Mike the Lefty says:

    Well what can I say?
    Great article Frank, well backed up by evidence.
    Let’s hope John Key’s spin will come back to bite him and National very badly at next year’s election. They deserve nothing less than political wilderness for their incessant lies and plundering of New Zealand’s most precious resource, whilst using the lie to promote tourism.
    The National Party, Federated Farmers and Crosby Textor will be hard at work right now working out a damage control programme. As I said previously this spin campaign will make all previous ones pale by comparison.
    Havelock North might just be the first one in a series of public water supply contaminations. Scientists have told us for the last decade that it would take several years before the damage would become apparent but once that damage is apparent it will be hard to fix. Putting it down to a freak occurrence caused by a flood is just spin. We have floods all over New Zealand at any time. A flood might cause short term problems in the water supplies because of sewerage and stormwater drainage problems but this is not what caused Havelock North’s problems.
    National Party MPs will be hurrying to buy shares in bottled water companies right now. Sales are going to rocket! I am used to buying bottled water when I travel to China. Now I might have to get used to buying here in New Zealand!
    How the hell could this happen in 100% clean green New Zealand?

  2. darth smith says:

    john key says the govt is demand much higher water quality standards 2016
    https://youtu.be/_0canC4MM9I

  3. darth smith says:

    2011 hard talk john key on water pollution
    https://youtu.be/_0canC4MM9I

  4. Helena says:

    Perhaps it is time for a slew of billboards (1,000s) to be placed on private land bordering roads and motorways warning tourists of pollution to land, rivers and water supply with the advice that all complaints should be addressed to the Minister of Tourism.

  5. brian says:

    Perhaps this is what the new spying funds and powers are for, to ensure farmers are being honest when reporting compliance to environmental standards. ha ha ha ha ha

  6. Helena says:

    I’ve just remembered Bill Gates talk where he states that population numbers need to be culled (down to a manageable level):
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gROhNaJoGzI
    More than one way to get the job done, eh jonkey.

  7. Afewknowthetruth says:

    Great research and compilation the facts again, Frank.

    ‘In the years ahead it will be increasingly important that New Zealand marries its economic and environmental policies. Global climate change awareness, resource shortages, and increasing intolerance of environmental degradation will give environmental policy renewed relevance on the world stage.’

    Of course the whole ‘Bluegreen’ narrative was absolute bollocks from the outset, an Orwellian attempt to present looting and polluting the environment as sustainable and beneficial. I remember attempting to read the promotional booklet and stopping after the third page because it was absolute nonsense scientifically, and was full of advertising-style buzz words and disinformation.

    National never have been, and never will be, interested in anything other than looting and polluting the commons, and distributing the plunder amongst themselves and their mates, whilst lying to the general populace about it all.

    Now that resource depletion has reached a critical stage and climate change has been clearly identified as abrupt climate change (CO2 at the highest level ever and rising by unprecedented amounts, record temperatures etc.)

    https://www.co2.earth/co2-acceleration

    http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/science/2016/07/_2016_will_be_the_hottest_year_ever_again.html

    leading to a largely uninhabitable planet in a matter of decades, we can expect National to continue to implement policies to make everything worse faster (promotion of increased consumerism, increased tourism, greater dependence on road transport, road construction, population growth etc.), and to tell ever-bigger lies about it all.

    The truth is, NZ has never been in a worse state than it is now, and its prospects for the future have never been worse than now.

  8. Garibaldi says:

    Thank you Frank. A fantastic piece. Pity it won’t get any further than this site.The other sad fact is that it is too long for the average attention span !

    • Thanks, Garibaldi. Yes, it was a lengthy piece. The more I researched the problem, the more information I kept finding. The story above could probably easily be expanded into a small book – there was much I left out.

      Hopefully the msm can use the material I’ve found as a basis for their own stories.

      • Blake says:

        Why not write a book Frank ? What you put together needs a much broader audience and you have invested so much into it already.
        We appreciate your informative pieces but we are mostly the choir you are preaching to.

  9. mary_a says:

    Oh the irony ….

    With the greatest of respect (and sympathy) for the victims of the dirty water issue and its devastating consequences, the irony is that this is happening in the Minister of Tourism’s (that’s Key) “100% pure clean green NZ!”

    Should never happen in a first world country that takes responsibility for its citizens and environment!

    Meanwhile, back here in NZ …. !!!

  10. Bert B says:

    Alot of National supporters live in Havelock North.
    Wonder if they will make the connection between their hero Key, cow shit and the swill they have been drinking.
    Brighter future anyone?

  11. Mike Woods says:

    Great article Frank but remember:
    In a time of universal deceit – telling the truth is a revolutionary act. George Orwell

  12. reason says:

    Nationals economic plan of more cows more cows has left us in the shit … literally. ……….. shit, piss and fertilizer run-off.

    This ‘wealth generation’ has stolen away from poor children and others the joy, socializing and health benefits of swimming for free at the local swimming hole or river …………

    With kids living in cars in winter ……….. and river water making them sick if they swim in summer

    They almost have it covered ………

    On the bright side we could make money from novelty new zealand bottled water.

    how much would you pay for a bottle of 100 % ‘ecan e-coli’? … ‘taranaki testine twister ‘? …’ or a good guzzle of gisbourn gut drop’

    On the not so bright side …… the pollution and poisoning of our fresh water is going to get worse under the Nats ……… the worst of the leeching from pasture to waterway has not occurred yet ……from all the previous years piss, shit and fertilizers …

    National will just add more 100 % pure bullshit to the mix going forward ……………….. and call it wade able.

  13. CLEANGREEN says:

    Brilliant as usual Frank and as you know Key’s vanity to rob all our rail assets in our regions for his “mystic “Cycleway” is also impacting on our water quality!!!

    Guy Wellwood the Hastings District Council Mayoral Candidate was addressing a crowd of just under 90 people at our “Save the rail’ Gisborne Rail Forum on Friday, that water testing has found traces of our road vehicle also in the Hastings, Havelock aquifer water supply also.

    The Clive river has a HBRC regional warning sign on it by the Clive bridge warning of river runoff pollution from the roads now also!!!!!!!

    Trains have steel wheels and pollution they generate is up to 12 times less than road freight according to studies in the US so if key keeps our Gisborne Rail mothballed since 2012 we will have the most polluted aquiver on the HB plains in the whole country!!!

    He will single handed kill the whole HB wine, horticultural, and faming industries in the HB Region dead.

    This National Government is a deadly environmental toxin to us all as it spreads poison all around this once pristine clean green land, it makes me weep.

    Where the hell is key’s own “science advisor Dr Gluckman”???????????

    • John W says:

      Dr Gluckman is joke. a puppet for NACT and his “expertise” is as a paediatrician. He does not display a global understanding of science nor does he have standing in the Scientific community on environment or any matters concerning global physics.

      A Tame corrupt NACT team of losers member.

      A sick offensive joke.

    • Chooky says:

      +100 CLEANGREEN and JOHN W

  14. Blake says:

    Fantastic ! Frank – very well done and much appreciated. Professional.
    Makes our blood boil – this issue mostly swept under the carpet.

    An idea ? This piece is worthy of a much broader audience – to get this out to many more – why not send a copy to all politicians ? and then with more funding, send it to all Councils in NZ – newspapers ? This needs to get out to many more than the choir here – especially the photo of the black cow pooing in the river.

    And now 1080 being dumped near rivers and all over the show.

    Wonder if – ” NICE ” NZ is even appropriate when we give away our best water to the bottling companies and can not swim in our rivers.
    John Key is out to lunch and his dirty lying ways must be stopped and will be stopped.
    The corporate N.W.O. fascist joker – the corporation in disguise of a man – the Dirty Politics King.

    • Afewknowthetruth says:

      ‘why not send a copy to all politicians ? and then with more funding, send it to all Councils in NZ – newspapers ?’

      Blake. Those of us who saw the truth long ago gave up sending information to politicians, councils and newspapers long ago because they are at the heart of the problem. (See constructed ignorance, above).

      They -politicians, councils and newspapers- have all been repeatedly warned about everything of significance, from Peak Oil to Abrupt Climate Change, from the unsustainable nature of the financial system to the dire effects of ocean acidification, from the debilitating effects of industrial foods to the disastrous effect of industrial agriculture, from the bomb of overpopulation to the demographic time bomb: they are NOT INTERESTED and WONT DO A THING ABOUT ANY OF IT because their job is to keep the populace trapped in the Matrix and believing the system has a future [when it doesn’t] ….even as the system ruins everything and starts to collapse.

      People like Key cannot be stopped (much as we would like him to be stopped) because the battle for control of society and the minds of the populace was lost decades ago.

      However, if you are looking for hope, be consoled by the fact that the system WILL DESTROY ITSELF fairly soon.

      All any individual can do is keep telling the truth.

      Frank is.

      • Blake says:

        Thanks for telling your truth which I completely agree with. The matrix is entrenched and the NWO is in full swing but I would like to
        “keep telling the truth” to as many as possible. What Frank wrote ( and usually does ) is powerful and important to get out, en masse, to as many as possible whether they are brain dead and bought and puppets or not. We know the media and most govts. are worthless and damaging and mind controlling. We also know who owns them and are dictating to them and why.

        Questioning authority and exposing the dirty dirt is our job because many of us see what the majority have no clue about. In our own little way, we are making a difference with what we share and the truths we tell. You write VERY powerfully and I hope that those who read will learn. Often we are preaching to the choir and that is why I feel we need to pass on info to others outside this circle – more and more. I remain in hope that we can make a difference by continuing to share and continuing to fight for what is right even though we are swimming in the cesspool of the fruits of those elite criminals behind the NWO. Being realistic is important and it is also important to try and avoid negativity and pessimism. What we think, we create.

        In saying the above, I completely understand where you are coming from and why you feel as you do. Really I do.
        ” A few know the truth ” and I just want more to jump on board and will continue keeping on keeping on as I did when
        I was and still am, an entrenched and very active anti-nuclear activist.
        Mediocrity; negativity and complacency brings on a subtle and slow decline and I want to keep up the fight no matter how dire the predictions.

  15. Andrew says:

    Nice try Frank but no cigar.

    Last weeks problems in Hawkes Bay are more to do with incompetent local government than anything John Key has done, or not done.

    There is actually very little dairying within the catchment of the that water supply so until we know the cause, maybe we should keep quiet.

    • You should have done your research before attempting to dismiss a report on this problem, Andrew. If you had, you’d’ve known that there is a considerable dairying industry in the Hawkes Bay;

      For starters, there are 72 herds comprising 48,444 milking cows in that district, on 16,691ha.

      ref: Dairy NZ, http://www.dairynz.co.nz/media/1357992/quickstats-hawkes-bay.pdf

      Water run-off into waterways can be carried anywhere from any one off those 72 herds into an underground water-source.

      But if you want to get specific, 120 Holstein cows were introduced to Havelock North in 2014, by Te Mata Mushroom owner, Hawke’s Bay entrepreneur, Michael Whittaker.

      ref: “Dairying Comes to Havelock North”, http://www.baybuzz.co.nz/archives/7321/

      Te Mata Mushooms were also investigated as a possible source for contamination of the Havelock North’s water supply.

      ref; “Mushroom link to previous water contamination”, http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11696343

      You can keep your cigar. I don’t smoke tobacco.

      • Andrew says:

        Those stats do not apply to the water catchment in question but to the Hawkes Bay in general.

        Like I said, I suggest you stick to your day job and let the inquiry sort out the details.

    • CLEANGREEN says:

      Same old rubbish from ANDREW,

      He must be broke this week! poor thing, as his paymaster is not paying him unless he trolls every day with his mindless rubbish as this one is so don’t answer folks his rubbish as he is paid by the blog.

    • Steve King says:

      Andrew, I seldom engage in personal attacks, but do you actually possess a brain? You know, grey squishy thing, behind your eyes, has capacity for critical thinking… oh, never mind.

    • John W says:

      Andrew are you implying that tobacco is a reward. Is the toxic tobacco industry also one of your rescue missions candidates.

    • Theodore says:

      “Last weeks problems in Hawkes Bay are more to do with incompetent local government ” – Andrew

      Really, Andrew? Are you taking the piss, mate? Are you suggesting the Hawkes Bay district council put the campylobacter into the water supply? That’s how I’m reading your bullshit comment.

      As for “actually very little dairying within the catchment of the that water supply”, that shows the depth of your pig-ignorance (excuse the pun). WATER TRAVELS YOU PILLOCK! It can start at ground level and work it’s way through rivers, streams, and cracks in the ground to areas kilometres away from where it started.

      The Nile started from a source 4,180 miles before entering the sea!! FOUR THOUSAND MILES YOU DICKHEAD!!

      Get some education into you, boy. You’re an embarrassment.

  16. wanafli says:

    Great article, Frank. Our waterways are disgusting, and have been for some time.
    But, I for one, have to admit, that when I first heard of Havelock North’s contamination problems, my first thought was “Who did it?”
    Maybe I have been watching “V for Vendetta” too much, but with all the false-flag and diversion tactics going on, one wonders. Especially having resided in Christchurch during the earthquakes. We were told to boil water for two to three minutes before using it (a very sensible precaution), but I don’t recall any outbreaks of any kind, (although my memory might be in need of correcting on that)
    Given our present “Leader” and his party’s antics, anything is possible.

  17. Afewknowthetruth says:

    Frank, while you are at it, maybe you should have a look at the ‘cadmium problem’.

    New Zealand pastoral farming is dependent on the continuous application of phosphate, usually in the form of superphosphate. A lot of phosphate rock was formed millions of years ago and contains traces of highly undesirable elements that didn’t do any harm when they were locked away in insoluble phosphate rock but when treated with sulphuric acid to make superphosphate become much more chemically active. Decades of forcing the land to produce more grass growth than would naturally occur has resulted in elevated levels of cadmium and other toxins in the soil, especially in the Waikato.

    ‘At current cadmium loading rates, the next significant point at which the 1 mg/kg cadmium guideline will be reached over wide land areas is expected for dairy farms, which cover about 25% of the Waikato region (about 623000 hectares). Conservatively, the average cadmium concentration in Waikato dairy soils is projected to reach the recommended guideline in under 16 years.’

    http://www.waikatoregion.govt.nz/tr200551/

    Like everything else promoted by governments over many decades and still promoted by the gang of maniacs currently in power, dairying is inherently unsustainable -not only because of the mismanagement of water and the build-up of toxins aspects, but also because it is totally dependent on the consumption of fossil fuels and is totally dependent on there being no restriction on the release of greenhouse gases (which are in the process of messing up EVERYTHING) into the atmosphere.

    • Thanks, Afewknowthetruth. I’ve taken note of that, It will be useful for future research.

      • In Vino says:

        In another world… In 1979 I was living in Cologne, Germany. A small article in the newspaper warned that Germany’s potatoes were close to highest level allowed by WHO for Cadmium.. from soil contamination due to fertilisers. The Germans were generally serious about fixing problems like that – they had cleaned up the River Rhein to the point where fish (inedible) were living in it again (there had been none at all previously) and were continuing to improve things.
        But here? I suspect that if you or Mike Joy raises the problem of Cadmium levels, our beloved leader will say that he can find another scientist to contradict the evidence. And delay doing anything.

    • Just had a very quick squizz at it, Afewknowthetruth. This opening paragraph left me wide-eyed in disbelief;

      An estimated 8.3 tonnes of the heavy metal cadmium is currently applied to Waikato soils each year, with the largest single source being superphosphate fertiliser. Cadmium is a naturally occurring, toxic, non-essential and biologically cumulative heavy metal. Concentrations of cadmium in Waikato soils have been gradually increasing since the advent of topdressing.

      Unbelievable.

      New Zealand’s (undeserved) “clean and green” reputation will be trashed once information like this gets out to the international tourism industry.

      More important, this is a helluva shitty legacy to be leaving our grand-children.

      • Afewknowthetruth says:

        Glad to be of help, Frank.

        I’ve been banging away at this kind of stuff for nearly 20 years, and have been largely ignored. So now we are getting damned close to the end of the line, with so many of the factors that have been ignored for so long coming to an awful culmination.

        Yes, it will be a ‘helluva shitty legacy to be leaving our grand-children’. However, they’ll keep doing it until they can’t (applying toxic fertilisers, sucking water out of aquifers faster than they replenish, burning fossil fuels…….)

        I’m sure you already know but here’s a reminder:

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I8P80A8vy9I

        • Blake says:

          Hi
          Have been looking for your referral of – ” constructed ignorance ” and not sure where that is. Tried googling it. Can you please let me know where I need to go to read that ?
          Is the link under a different name ? Sorry but I would like to read it. Thanks

      • Robert Atack says:

        Transpower have been grit blasting all their pylons over a certain age, prior to re painting, they have been grit blasting galvanized crap all over the place – zinc, lead, and cadmium.

    • John W says:

      Mike joy has produced detailed work on this super-phosphate legacy.

      There are areas of he Waikato where anything grown is not fit for human consumption. Also places in Taranaki and pockets elsewhere.

      Fertiliser companies are transnational – can’t be touched while NACT is in govt seats.

  18. cync says:

    Are there any people, that are qualified to speak on this matter, out there. Yeah, you could reference Mike Joy or Willy Leferink. Neither of them have a barrow to push.
    Instead of repeating some old articles in news papers, why not look at independent research. Oh that’s right there is none. All you are doing is taring all rural people with a dirty brush. Get some “evidence”. I definitely do not condone sub standard environmental practice, however I also think we should only get worked up about verifiable facts not some emotive arguments held by outliers, in their respective fields. That is the reason Key and his mates have had a field day with any opposition they have had to endure, for the five minutes it takes them to sweep it under the carpet, with a flag debate or add your own crisis in there.

    • “Get some evidence”?

      I believe Mike Joy came up with plenty – and was still dismissed out of hand by our esteemed Dear Leader and the farmers’ groups. This is not about evidence, or lack of, it’s about changing mind-sets. That’s harder to achieve to finding the evidence.

  19. Mike in Auckland says:

    Nick Smith’s “solution” in March this year, as reported by stuff.co:
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/farming/dairy/78084746/Proposal-to-ban-livestock-from-waterways

    “It was planned the exclusion would be extended to dairy support stock, beef cattle and deer by 2025 to give farmers time to comply.

    Sheep and goats would not be covered as they did less damage to streams and rivers, the consultation document said.

    The areas covered by the exclusion were plains and lowland hills with slopes of four to 15 degrees.

    Farmers would need to put up permanent fences unless there was a natural barrier preventing stock from getting to the water.”

    So some animals covered, others not, simply from entering or getting right to the streams?!

    More info on an earlier started initiative:
    https://www.google.co.nz/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=4&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwjZi9H3_NHOAhVLGpQKHWTEA9oQFggoMAM&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.mpi.govt.nz%2Fdocument-vault%2F4249&usg=AFQjCNEzrFGX_-q4fozn8C6ia_XfcsUThA&bvm=bv.129759880,d.dGo

    Simply fencing waterways, and keeping cattle away from them, that is not enough, as the urine and faeces will simply only take a little longer to seep through the grounds into the waterways, flushed through by rainfall.

    I wonder how the NZ standards and practice may compare to this kind of standard:
    http://ec.europa.eu/environment/water/water-nitrates/index_en.html

  20. David H says:

    “…we should always measure a Government’s environmental rhetoric against its environmental record.”

    Yep Bullshit spoken, and in Bullshit we wade!

  21. Pam says:

    On the cow urine & its contents here, trenchmouth, lyme disease, leptospirosis. : https://envirowatchrangitikei.wordpress.com/2016/06/04/why-you-shouldnt-swim-in-the-manawatu-or-any-nz-river-the-pollution-of-our-waterways-for-corporate-profit/
    Our councils/horizons/govt the worst polluters. As one of our Crs (Horowhenua) points out, Cncls are ‘top drawer polluters’, they just have the spin and lip service to cover themselves . Two men in our district have been assaulted in relation to their activism against this pollution, one of them a Cr himself. (see our LG Watch pages for documentation of that)

  22. Pam says:

    If people like to visit Michael Feyen’s and Ross Campbell’s FB pages, they have filmed the pollution by the Horowhenua DC, both stock trampling the wetlands/river edges and the discharging by Cncl of raw sewage into the local waterways, all denied of course in spite of the blatant footage featuring toilet paper even. Michael Feyen also has a YT channel with miles of footage showing cows in the water, sewage discharging etc. These two have stood up constantly against this pollution however are vilified by Cncl not celebrated as champions for the environment. As per above they are also on our LG Watch pages under HOrowhenua… envirowatchrangitikei.wordpress.com

  23. Righteous one says:

    If we haven’t got dairy what else can we export the public will just have to except that this is the way it is there is no other options if there was John key would be doing since he hasn’t there isn’t and that’s way it is

    • Afewknowthetruth says:

      We haven’t seen the TINA (There Is No Alternative) argument for a while. The banks, corporations and their agents love the TINA argument.

      We ‘have to’ deregulate the economy: TINA

      We ‘have to’ sell state assets to our mates at discounted prices: TINA.

      We ‘have to’ create money out of thin air and charge interest on it: TINA.

      ‘We ‘have to’ build more roads and widen the ones we have: TINA.

      We ‘have to’ increase the population via mass immigration: TINA.

      Etcetera, etcetera.

      TINA is responsible for most of the predicament we now find ourselves in and will eventually destroy us (or our progeny, depending on age).

  24. CLEANGREEN says:

    I see John key has been all over the news today about the Havelock aquifer contamination as an expert saying we will have a wide broom study??????

    Well John key you are so f#*ing dumb you creep, read below.

    You have caused all of the rivers to become polluted and knew this years ago if you can read the news through your dairy intensification you have long encouraged since Chines buying Lockinvar large Taupo farm remember that one????

    Here are some snippets that were already in the press so don’t go blaming anyone else but yourself, and for wrecking our rivers you need to pay for this with you job so just do us all a favour and resign you toxic animal.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/4491565/People-warned-to-stay-out-of-polluted-Clive-River

    • Thanks for that, Cleangreen. Noted for future reference.

    • Afewknowthetruth says:

      The current water quality pales into insignificance when you consider what is coming to Clive and other low-lying districts in the next 20 years or so: 1 or 2 metres of sea level rise; very likely 3 meters by 2050.

      ‘Sea levels could rise by much more than originally anticipated, and much faster, according to new data being collected by scientists studying the melting West Antarctic ice sheet – a massive sheet the size of Mexico……

      Davidson said recent data that has been collected but has yet to be made official indicates sea levels could rise by roughly 3 meters or 9 feet by 2050-2060, far higher and quicker than current projections. Until now most projections have warned of seal level rise of up to 4 feet by 2100.’

      http://www.insurancejournal.com/news/national/2016/04/12/405089.htm

      Needless to say, the Key government is firmly locked into denial when it comes to future sea level rises and has dismissed the NZ Environment Commissioner’s report on the matter.

      Whether the Key government as criminally incompetent or just criminal is a matter of debate at this stage, but a decade from now it will be obvious to even the most brain-dead of current National supporters.

      • Quicksilver says:

        “will be obvious to even the most brain-dead of current National supporters.” Good grief AFEWKNOWTHETRUTH. You’re being far too optimistic there.
        Based on my interactions with such politically warped individuals, a 3m sea level rise in a few decades will be seen as just “a temporary aberration”, and they’ll undoubtedly ascribe it to one or all of: (a) sunspot activity, (b) the last Labour govt., (c) too many handouts to beneficiaries or (d) a socialist plot to undermine the free market.
        But hey, it’ll wash away the faecal contamination in our coastal waterways I suppose. And instead of hanging on to that “100% Pure” marketing lie, the inundated regions of NZ could be more truthfully marketed as “3.5% Salty – and now, minus the shit!”.

  25. ***Update***

    From Radio NZ’s Checkpoint on 22 August:

    (audio required)

    Firstly, a bit of blather from our esteemed Dear Leader;

    “Inquiry into Havelock North water deliberately broad – PM”
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/201813132/inquiry-into-havelock-north-water-deliberately-broad-pm

    And this one is a must-see to be believed, as Massey University professor Russell Death, describes how polluted the Tukituki River really is;

    “Fresh water results worst ecology professor has seen”
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/201813133/fresh-water-results-worst-ecology-professor-has-seen

    The Hawkes Bay regional council chairman responds – and seems curiously oblivious to what going on in his own backyard;

    “Hawke’s Bay Regional Council chairman on water contamination”
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/201813134/hawke's-bay-regional-council-chairman-on-water-contamination

  26. Wha Left says:

    So summing up our voting options for 2017.

    Vote National, ACT, United Future and NZ First if you want more cow shit in your drinking water.

    Vote National, ACT, United Future and NZ First if you want waterways which are wade-able, not swimmable.

    Vote National, ACT, United Future and NZ First if you want drinking water which will only contain cowshit in some rural heartland towns in Aotearoa.

  27. Samwise says:

    o
    Outstanding research, Frank. it shows the level of inaction from the Nats. they might be big on rhetoric, but piss-poor on real action. Much like their inaction on greenhouse gas emissions!

  28. Priss says:

    Well, I guess it had to happen eventually; dairy intensification leaduing to polluted water supplies. I mean, really, where did they think all that cow crap would end up going? Some mysterious Neverland?

    The Greens are looking pretty validated at this point.

  29. Helena says:

    Never mind the council/government talking heads we can clean up our water. The technology to clean up our water is already available:
    http://www.structuredwatertechnologies.com/
    and the following at 38:04 (altho all info interesting)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LavklAnTXLw

  30. […] blogpost was first published on The Daily Blog on 21 August […]

  31. Roger the Dodger says:

    So tell me, Andrew, would you drink water from the Tuki Tuki River??