Category Archives: DOC

DoC are dragging their feet over OIA requests about the secret storage of 1080 at Whitianga

Thanks to reader manukapath for this link. Have a read of the background info at fyi.org.nz, but do also scroll right down to the last entry on Feb 24th (still unanswered) by S.C. McKee,  a scathing commentary on what DoC should be doing and isn’t. Questions DoC is not answering adequately. For further background on the Whitianga story type Whitianga into the search box here, or go to 1080 under ‘categories’ (left of page). Finally, for those in the Horowhenua, there was a fire in a 1080 storage facility (Horizons) in Levin that the Council did not know about until a week later with word from at least one person of health effects following. Read the article here.

QUOTE:

“Question 1 ( under OIA)
Whom did you inform about the storage of the ecotoxic baits in the Liquor King building? ( from June 8th to October 17th )

Question 2 ( under OIA)
When you read the MSDS, why did you not prepare an emergency response plan knowing that in the worst case scenario of a warehouse fire, extremely toxic gas ( hydrogen fluoride) would be produced, requiring evacuation of anyone in its path?

Question 3 ( under OIA)
When you read the MSDS, you would have read that firemen attending a fire of the baits would have to be trained in the use of breathing apparatus. Why did you not check with the fire chief that they had that equipment and that his staff were trained in the use of breathing apparatus?

It is not responsible to simply dismiss my questions as fear-mongering .

Every organisation has to have health and safety and emergency plans for a worst-case scenario. School teachers when taking students on a walk or a school trip have to do a Risk-Assessment and plan for contingencies. Managing hazardous substances such as 23,700 kg of Class A1 ecotoxic baits carries with it a huge responsibility for health and safety. Especially it being stored in the middle of a town.

Under the Health and Safety at Work ( Hazardous Substances) Regulations 2017 from December 1st 2017, you are most certainly required have to have an emergency response plan.

The HSNO Controls for Sodium fluroroacetate cereal-based pellets state the following:

You need an emergency response plan.
Refer to the Emergency Preparation section of Your Practical Guide.
You need to refer to the safety data sheets for your substances to find out what personal protective equipment people using each substance need to wear. Also refer to the Keep Safe with Hazardous Substances section of Your Practical Guide.Under HSE, all substances require the use of protective clothing.
You need secondary containment.

Under the Official Information Act, I expect to receive a reply within 20 days, else I may complain to the Ombudsman.

Yours sincerely,

S C McKee

READ MORE OF THE BACKGROUND AT THE LINK BELOW:

https://fyi.org.nz/request/6832-hazardous-substance-inventory-for-1080-stored-in-whitianga-october-2017#followup

Advertisements

Clyde Graf interviews Graeme Sturgeon on the assault case the Court dismissed

Clyde Graf is with Carol Sawyer and Kathy White.

 

The Crown vs Graeme Sturgeon – 1080 Poison Assault – “Charges Dismissed” … here’s the post-decision video interview …


THE WORST THREE MONTHS GRAEME AND JULIE STURGEON HAVE EVER EXPERIENCED

So very, very wrong what these good people were put through.

Graeme Sturgeon is interviewed here by Clyde and Steve Graf. Frankly speaking, I feel privileged to know such amazing people.

Yet despite what Graeme and Julie have been through, as Graeme says here they will not give up the fight to save their water and wildlife.

Other heroes to me are hardworking and generous-spirited John and Denise Allen, who organised a campsite on the outskirts of Thames and set up to cater for however many people turned up – up to 300 people if necessary.

Fighting 1080 poison is fighting the NZ government. There is no environmental battle harder than that.

So much of the time it feels impossible, futile – insane even – to be trying to stop this taxpayer-funded, propagandised industry, where helicopter companies like EPRO and HeliOtago make many tens of millions every year; where senior management in DoC and OSPRI are on salaries they could never hope to replicate, even closely, in the private sector; where trucking firms like those owned by Trojan Holdings ( Northern Southland Transport, Upper Clutha Transport, Cromwell Transport ), transport all the 1080 required in the lower South Island all the way from Whanganui in the North Island to points south; where the factory that manufactures all the 1080 baits in NZ, Animal Control Products, ( trading as Orillion ), in Whanganui,, has two nominal directors – the Minister of Finance and the Minister of Agriculture – and has a chairman, Terry Murdoch, who is an owner of Christchurch Helicopters Ltd – which company has a contract with DoC re orange-fronted parakeet translocation and has Dept of Conservation written on their helicopters ! Oh, and let us not forget one of the owners of Christchurch Helicopters is national All Black hero Richie McCaw…. Carol Sawyer

Photo: screen shot from TV Wild’s interview

For previous articles about the assault on Graeme Sturgeon go to this link or go to 1080 at categories at the left of news page.

Graeme Sturgeon Whitianga update: charged with assault, the case dismissed with relative media silence

Great news that this case has been thrown out. Fairly quiet from mainstream on that yesterday. An article link from this morning (21 Feb) has been published by Stuff.co.nz (see below).
Here are the updates as published at Facebook thanks to Carol Sawyer. (Go here for our previous coverage of Graeme’s story).

27973059_2063315530615429_2586772455572394919_n
Graeme Sturgeon after the assault

THAMES, COROMANDEL – GRAEME STURGEON – CASE DISMISSED !

20 Feb 2018
Perhaps everyone would like to be reminded about the Police Summary of Facts which should now be retitled the Summary of Lies ! ( Unfortunately, the aggressor, Richard Lane appears to have got away scot free).

Also, here is Graeme Sturgeon’s statement, made at the time of the assault on him by “security guard” Richard Lane :

STATEMENT BY GRAEME STURGEON RE UNPROVOKED ASSAULTS BY DoC SECURITY IN PUBLIC CARPARK, WHITIANGA CBD, 17 OCT. 2017

“Statement made after the events of Tuesday 17 th October behind Liquor King in Whitianga :
.
I was camped with four other people on a property up Kaimarama Road awaiting an 1080 Airdrop that was due to go into the area the following morning.
About eight o’clock we receive a message to say there was a strong smell of 1080 in the housing estate behind Liquor King and DOC was loading trucks with 1080 there in the middle of town.

We were anxious to get photos of such a crazy action
so I drove into Whitianga. The directions given were a bit hazy so upon spotting Liquor King I drove up the road alongside Liquor King and around the back of the building. As I turned the right angle corner at the back of the building I came upon 5 or six trucks that I had not seen until that moment.

I stopped and was in the process of taking off my seat belt when my door flew open and I was grabbed by the scruff of the neck and dragged from my vehicle. So much happened in the next few seconds that I am a bit hazy about, after receiving a brutal fist in the face. I remember a woman’s raised voice and seeing a
Security Guard standing there in front of me saying ‘Well he is bigger than me’

As my nose was bleeding I staggered back to my vehicle to get some tissues to be told that I was not getting into my vehicle as it was staying where it was until the police arrived. I was happy enough with that. I then became aware that both the inside and outside locking system of the driver’s door was broken and the door hinges appeared bent as the door would not close very well. I could not lock the door.

While we waited I was told that Diana Halstead and Dr Pond had also been assaulted as DoC Security Staff entered their vehicles and attempted to take their keys from them. The trucks reversed out from behind the building and set off up to the Kaimarama Road. The Police arrived after about an hour and went inside the building to, I presume, interview DOC Staff. It was only at that time that I realised that the building contained DOC Offices.

The Constable finally emerged and began to question us and take photos including the broken door on my vehicle and my shirt and jacket that had just about been torn from my back. He was pleasant and did a very thorough job I thought. It was agreed that we would go to Coromandel Police Station and make a detailed statement to Morrisey as soon as possible.”

Coromandel conservation group is calling for a halt to regional funding of toxin use on private land for wild animal control

IMG_8679

PRESS RELEASE:

A Coromandel conservation group is calling for a halt to regional funding of toxin use on private land for wild animal control.

The Upper Coromandel Landcare Assocation (UCLA) is asking Waikato Regional Council to suspend any further cash grants to “community” groups for placement of toxin 1080 and anticoagulant rat poisons on private properties on the peninsula.

UCLA cited a $41,000 grant to the Moehau Environment Group, a local contractor to WRC, for placement this summer of the poisons in bait stations on hundreds of hectares in Port Charles in an operation opposed by many landowners in the small community. In addition to concerns over secondary poisoning of protected native species and inhumane controls generally, local residents have objected to extreme danger from toxic animal carcasses on neighbouring properties, as well as poisons entering the food chain.

A recent memorandum from the Department of Conservation confirmed that 1080 resides in the environment and food chain after placement. The toxin has been implicated in the near-fatal poisoning of three Waikato residents after they ate wild pork.

According to UCLA spokesperson Reihana Robinson, there are safe, affordable, and acceptable alternatives to use of residual toxins, including trapping and hunting. “The $41,000 MEG grant, much of which covered 1080 poisoning on the property of the group’s own coordinator and her neighbour, is a dangerous, irresponsible, and wasteful use of regional rates dollars.”

IMG_8687

“Locals cannot walk dogs safely along the main road, children cannot safely explore up the Tangiaro Valley, families can not harvest nutritional wild food, and unsuspecting landowners may wind up with hazardous toxins on their own properties,” Robinson said. “And as for our tourism-based economy, visitors are being greeted with kilometres of skull-and-crossbone warning signs instead of the pristine bush they expected.”

“We are not talking conservation estate or protection of crown land. This is public funding of dangerous poisons on private properties within metres of property lines and roads, with toxins potentially migrating onto other people’s land.”

UCLA notes that hundreds of thousands of ratepayer dollars are being directed by the regional council this term to so-called “community groups” for possum, rat, and mustelid control with little or no accountability and without wider community support.

“It’s easy for council staff to farm out control work with a few big cheques to a few eco-contractors,” Robinson said. “But unfortunately, it is harmful not only to the environment, but to ratepayers and residents, and to regional council’s own relations with the wider community.”

IMG_8685

 

Did you know that a NZ man died from 1080 poisoning in 1966? … his family is still waiting for NZ authorities to acknowledge this

From stuff.co.nz
2009

The family of a Mataura possum hunter who died from 1080 poisoning 43 years ago want his death publicly acknowledged by the Department of Conservation and Animal Health Board.

Both agencies say no-one has died of accidental 1080 poisoning in New Zealand.

But Ian Buchanan’s widow, 69-year-old Elva Wicks, of Invercargill, said that was not true.

Wicks was 25 years old and the mother of three young children when her first husband, Ian Buchanan, died a “ghastly death” in Dunedin Hospital in 1966.

Coroner J Murray found Buchanan died from “central nervous system depression accompanied by respiratory and cardiac failure due to 1080 poisoning”.

The poison was found by investigators in a tin of jam kept in a back porch cupboard, but it was never discovered how the poison came to be in the jam, or how Buchanan consumed the 1080.

“If DOC and the AHB say they haven’t heard anything about Ian’s death it’s because they don’t want to hear,” Wicks said.

“It is documented on his death certificate – how can they deny it?”

AHB spokeswoman Anne McLean said the manner of Buchanan’s death was unclear.

DOC spokesman Rory Newsam said the department was unaware of Buchanan’s death until alerted by the media this week.

SOURCE

http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/3097688/Hunters-family-in-1080-battle

 

“The Killing Nation: New Zealand’s State-Sponsored Addiction to Poison 1080″… a new must-read book exposing the $100 mill industry that makes our ‘clean & green’ image look farcical

NZ now has a Poison Industrial Complex (PIC) which deliberately targets the media with good news propaganda justifying it’s continued existence.
If you don’t believe this read the latest book by Reihana Robinson exposing New Zealand’s PIC, available on Amazon.

51FTazlmjKL.jpg

 

“Environmental activist and researcher Reihana Robinson explodes the carefully cultivated myth of New Zealand as the “Clean and Green” paradise of the South Pacific. While her country’s government and tourism industry promote images of exotic native bush, rare avian species, clean running streams, and untainted farms, Robinson lays bare New Zealand’s “Dirty Little Environmental Secret” – the wholesale poisoning of the landscape with one of the world’s deadliest poisons to combat pest species, all in the name of “conservation”. New Zealand stands alone in the world for its widespread and growing use of the supertoxin “1080, spread by helicopter over hundreds of thousands of hectares of conservation land, rolling hills, and even into waterways and drinking water catchments. The toxin, made in batches at a small factory in backwoods Alabama USA and shipped to far-off Kiwiland, deals a grisly death to all oxygen-breathing species – among them countless birds, deer, mice, frogs, eels, and invertebrates of all description. While failing to achieve proven conservation gains, New Zealand’s poison-industrial complex taints more and more of the country’s pristine natural wealth with each passing year. Robinson recounts the surprising history of her country’s unusual and failing attempt to poison its way to a clean environment, and with classic investigative reporting and research, exposes the conflicts and professional intrigue that keep the poison flowing. Robinson chronicles the fightback by environmentalists, animal welfare advocates, and growing numbers in the scientific community against the increasing use of the poison in what has become an unhealthy growth industry protected by the New Zealand government. Her expose is a must-read for every student of environmental science – and an important introduction to “the real New Zealand” for tourists and international travelers expecting just the opposite.”

See the Resources page at the 1080 tab at the main menu for further links to info on 1080. Watch Poisoned Paradise, the award winning film that NZ tv channels refuse to play.

Could DoC’s recent poisoning of the Coromandel have anything to do with Whangamatā’s bee die off this week?

whangamata.png

If you check this map* of DoC’s recent pest treatment of the Coromandel that included 1080 drops, the Otahu block which was part of that, is right below Whangamatā. Whangamatā has this past week been stricken with 1000s of dying bees … washed ashore at Whangamatā’s popular beach, currently also inundated with holiday makers.
*(Note: you will need to scroll to the bottom of the page at the link & click on ‘I agree’ to access the map). 

NZ Herald reports 75 bee stings over the week from the dying insects. The problem began according to Radio NZ on Monday of last week (Christmas Day). Mainstream media has chosen to report it four days later on December 29th, the Friday before New Year when it will likely fly under the radar as folk head off for the long weekend. A time worn tactic with mainstream. NZ Herald reported it on the 30th (Saturday) but only as one paragraph within an article about the large beach crowd, not considered important enough to have a headline of its own. Die offs are becoming almost ho hum these days it seems. Pipi, toheroa, eels, blue bottles more recently and if you google bees this isn’t the first. I saw one item from 2014. There were more. By and large the phenomenon it appears is being downplayed.

It is unclear from DoC’s website maps and info whether 1080 was actually dropped on that block, but it is clear that it was treated with something. Whangamatā is situated on an estuary, also the subject of controversy with conservation concerns regarding a marina built there. As the map indicates waterways (particularly note the Otahu River) flow out of the poisoned zone to the sea. We are not told exactly where the bees were found, or on which beach. There are actually two there and both are safe for swimming.

Amendment 1 Jan 2018: All three pest treatments were aerial 1080 drops. 

What I found interesting researching this, was the lack of ease of locating on Doc’s site the relevant information about the poisoned areas. I note that the map indicates 1080 was applied to the Papakai block in the Coromandel, still the other two areas (marked in red) do not indicate the poison used at all. It was only when I went to the Battle for our Birds page  that I could find dates (Oct/Nov 2017) yet there was still no clear indication of what was dropped. The Hunting page gave a little more information as in where to go to find out the drop areas but one would have thought the Walking and Tramping page would contain this important information given tourists like to walk the scenic routes. There is nothing there, the site in my opinion is not tourist friendly at all.

So there has been a die off of thousands of bees. This is so tragic, given also we have only just had recent concerns raised by bee keepers about the effects of 1080 on the bee population, particularly in the Coromandel, with bees returning it to the hives.

RELATED: A warning from the Greens in 2012,   Don’t wait until the bees are all dead

Will we find out if it was 1080 (or any other poison)? I very much doubt it given the disinclination the authorities charged with protecting our wildlife have to reporting anything bad about this ‘wonderful’ insecticide that kills all oxygen breathing animals and organisms … banned by most countries and manufactured by your government here in Kiwiland.  Neither is it likely we’ll be told if it is any of the other poisons our authorities spread liberally around our environment. Our Kiwi government has a love affair with poisons and seems to be comfortably in bed with the poison industry possibly explaining the ongoing opposition we are seeing to anybody who questions the wisdom of it. Sue Kedgely summed it up quite nicely in 2012:

I am wondering how long it will be before we stop using pesticides that are poisonous to bees. I am not optimistic that it will be quickly, given our record. We were, after all, one of the last countries in the world to ban 245T. And the response of successive governments to calls to stop using lethal pesticides has been to dither and procrastinate in the face of mounting evidence, and accept industry blandishments that they are safe…. Sue Kedgely, Green Party

Let’s hope this is investigated by Whangamatā’s regional authorities. We will only be guessing unless the insects are tested and more information is given. Why do thousands of bees suddenly die off like that? We’ve been hearing for years that once the bees go (die) we humans have only a few years left. Ah but you can rest safe because the clever people running the show are busy cobbling together their new GM varieties which of course are going to save the planet.

Here are the articles from mainstream about the bee die off:

Whangamatā inundated with dying bees

One of the country’s busiest beaches has been inundated with dying bees, creating a hazard for holidaymakers.

Surf Lifesavers at Whangamatā have gone as far as issuing a warning to beachgoers to watch out for the insects.

Deputy Head Guard Max Jones said they had dealt with dozens of first aid requests for bee stings as thousands of the insects began washing up on the beach this week.

He first noticed them washing in with the tide on Monday and said it got worse as the week progressed.

He said that by Wednesday there were thousands of bees all along the high tide mark and they had to help about 20 children who had been stung.

Mr Jones said he had never seen anything like it, and while they were trying to alert people to the problem it was difficult with so many people on the beach.

He said the bees were mainly at the high-tide line, and while the numbers appeared to have decreased people still needed to be vigilant.

SOURCE: https://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/347165/whangamata-inundated-with-dying-bees

RELATED

But the biggest cause of injury over the week had been bee stings as thousands of dead bees washed ashore. Gibson estimated the crew had tended to 75 bee stings over the week.
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11967770

Many oppose Doc’s 1080 drops on the Coromandel
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11874204

Note: most of the links refer to our own articles, however if you consider this lop sided, I should point out that those articles contain external links. This is about saving time. You can proceed to those links yourself.

For further information on the poisons used in our environment including 1080 and glyphosate, see our main menu. Search categories or use the search box for other articles on topic. EnvirowatchRangitikei

Photo of Whangamata: Wikipedia

 

 

“The US military .. have very long fingers” – DARPA is sizing up our islands with $100 mill funding for gene drive (GE) technology on rats

“… the rise of the predator-free movement has intersected neatly with the bold new frontier of gene drive technology.” NZ Herald

This NZ Herald article,  as is common with mainstream media material, likely flew under the radar on 4th December. Judging by the disbelief from the public at our recent posts on this topic, it clearly didn’t get noticed. The article is basically an expanded version of the last one on topic here, and straight from the horse’s mouth so to speak. It is coaxing you into the up sides of GE. GE Free NZ however has now issued a warning about gene drive tech, that post is coming tomorrow. Read our previous posts on topic over the past week (in archives for December 2017, left column of News page, or search GMO in categories also to the left). Particularly also, search the GE Free NZ site for further info on the GE topic. GE is being sold to the NZ public as good for our health and environment among other things while the down sides are quickly dismissed, swept under the carpet or downplayed by media. As GE Free NZ points out, these GM animals end up euthanised with all kinds of health problems. We need to proceed (if at all) with extreme caution. Why ever does man think he can improve on nature?
EnvirowatchRangitikei

 

From the NZ Herald

“Overseas researchers interested in pest control or eradication are all looking at New Zealand,” says Forest & Bird chief executive Kevin Hague.

‘When Kiwi rat killing expert Doctor James Russell was told his research was being sized up for United States military funding, he wasn’t surprised.

“The US military – they have very long fingers. Even through the universities in New Zealand, they have a representative that comes around and just asks, ‘hey, what are you guys up to’.

“And obviously we’re in the business of eradicating entire populations of animals from an island and so they have cocked their ear towards me once or twice.

“You don’t have to be a genius to see that there’s potential military application in that.”
In this instance, Russell’s work was being measured for suitability against a US$100 million research pot made available by the United States’ Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (Darpa)

Also being evaluated were remote islands around New Zealand, sized up for live trials of genetically modified rodents.

The interest in Russell and New Zealand emerged during an investigation into the activities of a multi-national science advocacy and gene drive research body called Gbird.
It has a US$6.5m slice of that Darpa money and has been considering how to spend that in New Zealand.

READ MORE
What is gene drive technology and what does it mean for New Zealand?

The detail was revealed in a database of emails and documents charting Gbird’s growing focus on New Zealand – and the involvement of a taxpayer-owned Crown Research Institute which told the consortium it would make gene drive research a focus of “NZ Inc”.

It shows how the rise of the predator-free movement has intersected neatly with the bold new frontier of gene drive technology.

Gene drive research is the latest, greatest frontier in science as scientists grapple with the implications of genetic manipulation to remove inherited characteristics from subsequent generations. For example, wiping out one gender from a population of rats means no more rats.’

The database of more than 2000 documents released by North Carolina State University (NCSU) reveal Gbird’s interest in New Zealand as a possible test site and its efforts to get alongside those leading our fight against predators.

​The documents show careful efforts by Gbird – Genetic Biocontrol of Invasive Rodents – to shape its image and manage possible fallout associated with the US$6.5m pool of Darpa cash.

Among the documents is the report of the meeting with Russell’s meeting in mid-2017 with Gbird’s co-ordinator Royden Saah.

After the meeting, Saah reported to Gbird members: “Co-ordinating with James Russell. Appears no NZ islands meet the strict criteria used within Darpa grant.

“We are now considering small NZ islands that don’t have rodents present that could be used as trial sites, with mice sourced from remote NZ islands larger than our 300ha cut-off that may be future targets themselves.”

First it’s important to understand where New Zealand sits in the world of pest eradication.

Our national goal of wiping out possums, rats and stoats roughly sits with the research focus of leading thinkers on gene drive technology.

That’s because it’s not just about being able to create new technology but what you do with it. And in a world of potential – agricultural or medical benefits – conservation has become a core area of interest to gene drive researchers.

Gene drive technology appeared to offer definite answers to those seeking to eradicate predators. It also offered a permissive, public-friendly area in which to explore new technology.

A critical aspect of new technology is the willingness of society to allow new frontiers to be explored.

August-2017-Comprehensive-GBIRd-Update-2-p1-normal (1).gif

US military money has come with researchers wanting to kill Kiwi rats using gene tech.
NZHERALD.CO.NZ

A former DoC Field Centre Manager speaks out: “Appalled” by DoC staff behaviour at Whitianga 1080 drop

By Carol Sawyer

PAUL THOMAS, FORMER DoC FIELD CENTRE MANAGER, REEFTON, IS APPALLED BY PRESENT-DAY DoC STAFF BEHAVIOUR

These two photos are of DoC-employed security ‘guards’ (thugs?) at the aerial 1080 operation near Whitianga, Coromandel Peninsula, October 2017.

1A

On the first photo, Paul Thomas comments :

“As a former manager of DoC I’m just appalled at the behaviour of staff. I find this behaviour abhorrent! It has NO fit in conservation!! Nor has 1080!! Conservation is about connecting people to manage what is precious to all of us! There is NO connection here, only failure!!”:

Of the second photo (header image) he says “The disconcerting and ugly face of DoC – a disgrace !!”

I have posted these comments up again with his permission. Intrigued, I asked Paul for his background. He says :

“I was Field Centre Manager in Reefton 1990 to 1998. Managing predominantly Victoria Conservation Park (NZ Largest) and part Lewis Pass National reserve! Before that I was a conservation officer based on Kawau Island – Hauraki Gulf Maritime Park. Before that a conservation officer at Waipoua Forest Sanctuary! My career started as a reserved ranger at Trounson Kauri Park 1987, just before DoC came along! Post 1998 I did some project management work for DoC in historic resource management ! Which I continue now in community based built heritage projects, I do the projects as a volunteer. I do though have a continued interest in the natural environment. I’m a Lincoln Parks and Recreation Management graduate.”

Thank you, Paul, for speaking out.

NZ Police / DoC 1080 Cover Up?

Published on Dec 15, 2017

Since the making of this video, it has developed that the security firm involved were not a registered organization until 12th of December 2017 and the security guard that assaulted Graeme was not registered to be doing security work at the time of the incident……. LINKS TO WITNESS STATEMENTS AND FURTHER INFORMATION https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?… https://www.facebook.com/carol.sawyer…
Find more 1080 articles at ‘categories’ or the search box. Also check out the 1080 resources page. EnvirowatchRangitikei