Category Archives: NZ

The working poor in NZ … poverty & soup kitchens on the increase in neo-lib’s new look ‘Godzone’

Isn’t it great how ‘they’ rename & reframe everything to fool the gullible? Remember how they called gutting our economy, ‘restructuring’?. In other countries it got called ‘structural adjustment’.

So now we have a ‘well’ being budget?

With 43K homeless? Dramatic increases in eating at the soup kitchens? Lining up at the food banks? Sleeping in cars? Tents? Third highest child poverty globally? Neo-lib ISN’T working so let’s stop pretending it is. Social Welfare was only ever a safety net that humanizes capitalism. Neo-lib? Forget the net. We had a woman living in a tent in Whanganui recently, while the corporately knighted Keys of the world swan around the world with several million dollar mansions to choose from.

Do they really care?

Jacinda told the World Economic Forum  “…that politics needed to be more altruistic, and more long-term, to address the deep-rooted challenges we’re grappling with as the economy changes…” but, nah,

… in spite of her fine toasts amongst royalty at Buckingham Palace, telling the world that PEOPLE MATTER, she is doing what neo-lib (closet globalists) do best …. dragging it out.

“Let them eat cake”.

1. soup kitchen

 


From tvnz (John Campbell reports)

VIDEO. “If it wasn’t for donations and volunteers, some people would go hungry without breakfast.

The Government is set to deliver its so-called “wellbeing budget” next month. Ahead of the announcement, John Campbell took a look at the state of welfare in New Zealand.

Ahead of the Government announcing its “wellbeing budget”, John Campbell looks at the state of welfare in New Zealand. Source: Breakfast”

https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/look-poverty-in-new-zealand-kiwis-struggle-pay-bills-stay-fed?fbclid=IwAR1zFDl9cdWqY9cZeNpmv4EYmIvyB81DpFN_xmol75VDYhb6zrUnWGZDMjs

Save Our NZ Land lines! Important info & petition

Introducing a new NZ website, Save Our Landlines

NB: For updates, please check our NEWS section regularly at this link:

http://www.saveourlandlines.nz/category/news/.

We also have a FB page at this link:

https://www.facebook.com/Save-Our-Landlines-NZ-1626155717464225/

Introduction

This site is a community project by New Zealanders who do not want to see our copper landline infrastructure, which will function in a power blackout to be allowed to be run down or destroyed.

A corded phone that is connected to the copper landline network is a lifeline to emergency services if a storm or other event causes widespread power outages since this type of phone will work even if your home has no power.

The copper landline phone system allows people to choose to have a safe corded home phone.

This is particularly important in households with children given that their developing brain may be more vulnerable to adverse effects from cordless or cellular phones.

Many more reasons why the copper landline system is important and should be preserved may be found at this link: http://www.saveourlandlines.nz/uncategorized/welcome/

We hope that you will support our online petition which you will be able to to access via the link below:

Whos-on-the-wire-image-of-couple-talking-on-ladnline-phones

Please join us

Your voice in defence of our copper landline network and your taking the time to help educate others about the importance of this important national infrastructure. If you would like to volunteer to help with this campaign, please contact us via the Contact Form.  Thank you.

We also have a Facebook page that you can like and/or follow at this link: https://www.facebook.com/Save-Our-Landlines-NZ-1626155717464225/

RELATED:

The Future of Landlines & Networks
http://electromagnetichealth.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/ReInventing-Wires-1-25-18-FINAL.pdf

Auckland Council names 25 blocks with cladding cores like Grenfell Tower

We followed the Grenfell Tower disaster (crime) for a time & have revisited it again recently with the anniversary this month. Many of those people are still not rehoused from that shameful gentrification debacle. If you visit the blogs of the Grenfell Action Group you’ll see as is common with these corporate coverups, a long standing battle with landlords/Councils etc over the lack of safety & the fire risk in that tower before & immediately prior to the disaster. I believe also from many reports on the ground that the numbers of fatalaties were also vastly under stated. People were also advised (as is apparently customary) to remain in their apartments, thereby more fatalities occurred. What a crime. Human life – the shameful ‘throw away’ mentality of those who ride on the backs of the poor. The cladding was the cheaper option … it saved money & lost lives. As for NZ, remember the CTV building in the Christchurch earthquake? Nobody has been held accountable for the many lives lost in that building and should have been. And we have similar inflammable fire risk cladding on our buildings? No worries, they have got that all covered we’re told….


From the NZ Herald

Owners of the buildings have been told about the claddings but McCormick stressed the buildings were not necessarily dangerous to occupy because they had extensive fire protection measures such as sprinklers, alarms and escape routes.

Auckland Council has just released a list of 25 buildings with exterior aluminium composite claddings like the Grenfell Tower in London, where a fire last year killed more than 70 people.

But the council stressed the Auckland buildings with the flammable polyethylene cores in their claddings are not necessarily dangerous because they have other means of fire protection.

The huge Waitakere Stadium at Henderson, certain Auckland Hospital buildings in Grafton, Spark’s four-building campus in Victoria St, large residential blocks in the Viaduct and CBD, the huge PwC building on the city’s waterfront, TVNZ’s headquarters on Victoria St, Auckland University’s Owen Glenn Building and many apartment blocks appear on the list.

After a Herald official information request, the council named 116 buildings it said “appear to utilise ACP cladding to some extent”.

“In some cases the cladding material has a modified fire resistant core. Far fewer cases have cladding with a combustible polyethylene core,” said council building consents general manager Ian McCormick.

“The extent and use of ACP on the buildings varies considerably from the full facade, to decorative features only and many buildings examined did not contain ACP at all,” he said.

Owners of the buildings have been told about the claddings but McCormick stressed the buildings were not necessarily dangerous to occupy because they had extensive fire protection measures such as sprinklers, alarms and escape routes.

READ MORE

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?

c_id=3&objectid=12068992&ref=NZH_fb

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Protesting for justice over the Grenfell Tower crime

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What you need to know about the ‘new’ & still secret TPPA that isn’t new & doesn’t bode well for Maori, or anybody else really except of course the corporations

Ah… this is good for you but we can’t tell you how good because it’s all been negotiated in secret and we aren’t allowed to tell you what it says but trust us Kiwis … it’s good for you … Tui anyone?

 

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Posted by Jenese James

This is a trade deal NZ should NOT SIGN – The TPPA is a corporate passport to exploit the natural wealth of a nation by ‘legally’ robbing its citizens and the environment of that natural wealth

I want to point out the reason why so many politicians promise this and that before they get elected but once in power reneg on that promise – its because of the T&C of various trade deals done through membership of various organisations often in secret – to give an example …”…..Trade Minister David Parker says NZ First’s policy of taxing bottled water exports would breach various international agreements because it is discriminatory. But there is a much bigger risk that foreign investors could threaten to bring an ISDS dispute if moves to resolve water claims affect their commercial interests….”

here is another example

“…….The new government is rushing through changes to the Overseas Investment Act to restrict foreign purchases of residential housing. They admit that the law would breach the TPPA if it was passed after the agreement came into force….”

Its vital to grasp this because this is the key to understanding how policies are now made via these agreements and why voting really doesn’t make much difference once deals are done and always these deals are not done in public view but behind closed doors in secret as this trade deal reveals it – the secrecy behind it is tantamount to a betrayal of the people because it will allow corporations to steal the wealth of the people of the nation for private profit,

example … “…….The separation of cutting rights from the land was a device used by the Labour government in 1988 to allow corporatisation of the forests and separation of the land from the trees so the forests could be privatised…..”  …. this was the Roger Douglas’ cabinet.

Another example …  “…Labour and NZ First want to restore the right of NZ, and Maori, ownership of the forests. They have to change the foreign investment law before the TPPA comes into force because they can’t do so afterwards…..”…

so when you protest you are protesting against a much bigger force than you realize – politicians’ hands are tied once deals are signed.

Read it all below

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This is about the TTPA and Te Tiriti o Waitangi..

Written By Jane Kelsey

The state of play with TPPA

Ø The original Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement was signed by the 12 negotiating parties in Auckland on 4 February 2016, in the face of a massive protest led by tangata whenua.

Ø Japan and NZ completed their domestic processes to ratify (adopt) the original agreement during 2016.

Ø In January 2017 US President Trump withdrew the US’s participation from the TPPA.

Ø The 11 remaining countries met 7 times in 2017 to rescue the TPPA minus the US.

Each country tabled a list of provisions in the TPPA that it wanted removed or suspended.

Apparently, NZ under the National government did table a list of requests, but that remains secret.

The new Labour-NZ First government, supported by Greens, only had input into these negotiations at the very end.

Labour asked other TPPA countries to suspend the right of foreign investors to sue the NZ government in offshore tribunals over new laws and policies (investor-state dispute settlement/ISDS), but it failed.

Labour did not seek to make other changes or even suspend other provisions of concern to Maori.

Ø In December 2017 in Vietnam, the TPPA-11 agreed to suspend 20 items from the original text, pending the US’s re-entry; 4 matters remained to be finalized.

Ø In January 2018 in Tokyo the TPPA 11 announced a new deal, one year to the day from Trump’s withdrawal.

Ø Canada insisted that it needed changes to protect its culture sector. Reports say it also achieved changes on automobiles, although that was not on the list. These were done through side letters that remain secret.

Ø The TPPA-11 will contain the entire old agreement. 22 of the 1000+ original provisions have been suspended, pending US re-entry, but they have not been removed.

Ø The TPPA has been rebranded the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement on Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP or TPPA-11) even though the substance is the same as the old TPPA.

Ø They intend to sign the TPPA-11 agreement in Chile on 8 March 2018.

Ø The text of what they agreed remains secret. Japanese officials say the text will not be released until after it has been signed. The National Opposition, which ran the secretive negotiations, wants the text released.

Ø In January 2018 President Trump said he would consider re-entering the TPPA, but the terms would have to be more favourable to the US than the original agreement.

Ø The process for US re-entry will require consensus. Labour says some suspended items may never be re-activated. But the US domestic political processes mean any US re-entry will inevitably require more benefits to the US, not less.

Ø The TPPA-11 will reportedly come into force after 6 of the 11 parties have ratified it by completing their domestic processes. Again, the actual text of this provision has not been released.

The new government and the TPPA

Ø Labour, New Zealand First and the Greens all wrote dissents to the majority select committee report on the TPPA and said they would not support its ratification.

Ø Labour said the economic modelling was flawed and there must be a robust cost-benefit analysis that includes impacts on jobs and on distribution, as well as a health impact assessment. Neither report has been done for the TPPA-11.

Ø Labour now claims the new TPPA-11 meets Labour’s 5 pre-conditions for change, but it does not: it provides market access for exporters (but it has no new economic analysis of net costs and benefits); it protects the Pharmac model for buying medicines (but the provisions are suspended not removed); the Treaty of Waitangi, the sovereign right to regulate and restrictions on foreign ownership of property are all protected (which they are not, see below).

Ø Winston Peters says the TPPA-11 is a very different deal from the one NZ First opposed and they will now support it. That is not true. The ISDS provisions and core protections for foreign investors that NZ First so staunchly opposed remain the same and have not even been suspended.

Ø New Zealand’s ratification of the TPPA-11 requires another round of submissions to the parliamentary select committee on which National has 4 of the 8 members, including the chair and deputy chair.

Ø If legislation is needed to implement the agreement, National has said it will vote with Labour and NZ First. The Greens remain opposed.

Ø So the parliamentary process is a foregone conclusion.

MAORI A

The Treaty of Waitangi Exception

The Treaty of Waitangi exception in the TPPA is a copy of one that was drafted in 2000 for the Singapore free trade agreement (FTA).

The same exception has been rolled over in agreements since then, without any consultation with Māori, even though today’s agreements impose much greater restrictions on what governments can do.

Prime Minister Ardern says NZ ‘has an exemption that says it is always able to legislate and act to protect its obligations under the Treaty of Waitangi and that can’t be challenged by other nations’. That is not true.

Ø The Waitangi Tribunal in the TPPA claim (Wai 2522) said the Treaty exception ‘may not encompass the full extent of the Treaty relationship’ because it only covers Crown actions that give preferences to Māori, not laws or policies that apply generally but are at least partly for Treaty compliance (water, mining, fisheries).

Ø The PM said the Tribunal found the ‘exemption provides protections for the Treaty’. That is also not true. The Tribunal found no breach of Treaty principles because the exception was ‘likely’ to offer a ‘reasonable degree’ of protection for Māori. But it did not accept the Crown’s claim that ‘nothing in the TPPA will prevent the Crown from meeting its Treaty obligations to Māori’.

Ø The Tribunal was not convinced that the exception protects Crown actions from a dispute by a foreign investor, for example on water or mining.

Ø The Wai 2522 claimants made proposals for more effective protection. These have been ignored. There has been no consultation on any stronger protection.

Ø The wording of the exception hasn’t changed in other negotiations since the TPPA. Officials say that they can’t change the wording because they tell other countries they must have this wording because it’s in all NZ’s agreements. New wording would open the text for negotiation.

Ø But New Zealand got additional new wording on UPOV 1991 at the last minute in the TPPA (see below), so it’s not true the Crown can’t demand and win different wording.

Ø Labour seems to be accepting the Crown’s advice and accepting an ‘imperfect’ Treaty protection as a trade-off for other commercial benefits it sees in these deals.

The Waitangi Tribunal claim is ongoing

Ø The Waitangi Tribunal granted urgency to the TPPA (Wai-2522) claim, but limited its scope to whether the wording in the Treaty exception provided effective protection for Māori interests. It didn’t address other parts of the claim (eg water, mining, health).

Ø The Tribunal’s time for preparing its report was cut back because the National government pushed through the legislation to implement the TPPA; once the Bill was introduced the Tribunal had no jurisdiction.

Ø The Tribunal found there was a reasonable level of active protection in the Treaty exception, but suggested there should be consultation on better protection, and it kept oversight of the UPOV 1991 issue (below).

Ø The Crown wants the Tribunal process terminated. The claimants point to a lack of good faith consultation over TPPA-11 negotiations since the Tribunal’s report and issues not addressed in the urgent hearing remain.

Ø On 30 January 2018 the Tribunal asked the parties (basically the Crown) to say by mid-February (a) when the text of the new agreement would be available, (b) what its effect would be on the Crown’s engagement with Maori on the Plant Varieties regime and adopting UPOV 1991, (c) what issues in the TPPA claim remain live, and (d) ‘when would be the appropriate time for the Tribunal to commence inquiry into the remaining substantive claims that have been filed with respect of the TPPA?

WAI 262 and the UPOV 1991 convention

Ø The TPPA required NZ to adopt the UPOV 1991 Convention that creates rights to claim intellectual property rights on plant varieties, which Wai 262 report and the Cabinet have recognized is inconsistent with te Tiriti.

Ø Legal arguments from the Wai-2522 claimants showed the Treaty exception would not protect a Crown decision not to adopt UPOV 1991, because the decision only applies to a ‘preference’ to Maori. Not adopting UPOV 1991 is not a preference to Maori.

Ø The Crown convinced the other TPPA countries to adopt an annex that allows NZ to either adopt UPOV 1991 or pass a domestic law equivalent to UPOV 1991 that complies with te Tiriti. But it has to do one or the other within 3 years of the TPPA coming into force.

Ø That obligation hasn’t changed in the TPPA-11. National and Labour didn’t try to have it suspended.

Ø The Waitangi Tribunal has retained oversight of this matter and is actively monitoring it.

Ø The claimants say MBIE’s consultation process is unacceptable and have set in train their own process for expert advice and consultation.

Foreign investors’ rights

Ø The TPPA (and earlier NZ agreements) allows foreign investors from the countries involved to challenge laws, policies and decisions of a NZ government in controversial ad hoc offshore investment tribunals (known as investor-state dispute settlement or ISDS). An ISDS tribunal can award massive damages against a government for breaching special protections the agreements give to foreign investors.
PM Ardern has called ISDS a ‘dog’.

Ø The new government tried to protect NZ from ISDS in the TPPA-11, but failed.

Ø Australia signed a side-letter with NZ not to allow their investors to use ISDS against each other. But that side-letter was in the original TPPA and in other agreements. It’s not new to Labour.

Ø The new government says some other countries will sign a similar side letter, but won’t say who. Unless all the other ten countries sign side-letters, they don’t protect NZ from the risk of ISDS disputes.

Ø A provision that allowed investors to use ISDS to enforce infrastructure contracts has been suspended (not removed); but that is marginal and doesn’t change the TPPA’s special protections to foreign investors or the ISDS process through which they can enforce them.

Ø The Treaty of Waitangi exception is unlikely to protect NZ from an ISDS case over new laws to promote compliance with te Titiri.

Ø The Waitangi Tribunal noted ‘uncertainty about the extent to which ISDS may have a chilling effect on the Crown’s willingness or ability to meet particular Treaty obligations in the future or to adopt or pursue otherwise Treaty-consistent measures.’(p.50

Ø The government points to other protections for public policy measures, but those protections don’t apply to the main rules that investors rely on in ISDS disputes.

Ø The new government has instructed officials to oppose ISDS in future agreements, which is a positive move. But that doesn’t mean it will walk away if other parties insist on it. Officials are likely to advise that any new market access for agriculture is an acceptable trade-off.

Water

Ø Trade Minister David Parker says NZ First’s policy of taxing bottled water exports would breach various international agreements because it is discriminatory. But there is a much bigger risk that foreign investors could threaten to bring an ISDS dispute if moves to resolve water claims affect their commercial interests.

Ø NZ has protected the right to adopt discriminatory measures in the TPPA-11 ‘with respect to water, including the allocation, collection, treatment and distribution of drinking water’. But it says: ‘This reservation does not apply to the wholesale trade and retail of bottled mineral, aerated and natural water.’

Ø That reservation of the right to regulate on water does not apply to the main rules that investors rely on when they bring ISDS disputes against governments.

Ø The Treaty of Waitangi exception would not stop investors challenging such measures.

Ø There is a serious risk that the government would back away from a proposed solution to Māori rights over water if MFAT or an investor from a TPPA country, says the solution would breach NZ’s obligations.

Land and forestry

Ø The new government is rushing through changes to the Overseas Investment Act to restrict foreign purchases of residential housing. They admit that the law would breach the TPPA if it was passed after the agreement came into force.

Ø In January 2018 the government also sought consultation with Maori over proposals to redefine sensitive land under the Overseas Investment Act to include forestry cutting rights.

Ø The separation of cutting rights from the land was a device used by the Labour government in 1988 to allow corporatisation of the forests and separation of the land from the trees so the forests could be privatised.

Ø Labour and NZ First want to restore the right of NZ, and Maori, ownership of the forests. They have to change the foreign investment law before the TPPA comes into force, because they can’t do so afterwards.

Ø The TPPA only allows the government to keep the categories that are subject to foreign investment vetting which exists when the TPPA comes into force.

Ø The TPPA text says the vetting applies to ‘sensitive land’. If the government wants to implement its election policy, it has to rush through these changes to the law.

Ø But if the TPPA enters into force the government won’t be able to change the investment law to address other failed treaty settlements, such as fisheries quotas, or policies like carbon credits for forests.

Ø Even if changes are made to allow restrictions on future foreign investors, any existing investors from TPPA countries could still bring an ISDS dispute claiming their rights have been breached by the new laws because they can’t get as much for selling their assets as they had expected.

‘Consultation’ and tino rangatiratanga

Claimants in Te Paparahi o te Raki (Wai 1040) have challenged the Crown’s right to negotiate international treaties without the full and equal participation of nga iwi me nga hapu.

Ø The original TPPA was negotiated in total secrecy, aside from leaks. So were the meetings after the US withdrew. National was not interested in genuine consultation with anyone, let alone recognising te tino rangatiratanga o nga iwi me nga hapu. The same secrecy continues under the new government.

Ø The Waitangi Tribunal advised the Crown to consult with Māori to make the Treaty of Waitangi exception stronger. That hasn’t happened.

Labour has kept the same exception. Labour held meetings in various cities in early December and January. But this is not a good faith dialogue: they say the TPPA-11 is the best deal they can get, no further changes can be made, and they are prepared to sign it. The ‘consultation’ can’t change anything. That’s not a Treaty partnership.

The new government says it wants to develop a ‘new and inclusive trade agenda’ that makes trade and investment work for Māori, small business, women, and address climate change, environment and regional development.

That sounds positive. But the examples it gives are clip-ons to existing agreements that don’t address, let alone override, the problems the agreements create. And they are usually unenforceable.

Labour and NZ First’s positions on TPPA and te Tiriti show that it’s businesses as usual for the Crown.

They will try to shut down the Waitangi Tribunal process, while they run consultations around the motu (eg Wellington, 12 February) to promote an agreement the majority of parliamentary parties say they will support.

Other processes to advance Titiri-based continue over UPOV 1991.

Public meetings will be held in February in

Auckland on 12th,
Wellington on 14th,
Nelson on 20th,
Christchurch on 21st
and Dunedin on 22nd.

The arguments being used to promote the agreement don’t stack up for Maori or for Aotearoa/New Zealand.

The parties that make up new government promised change. If they are going to deliver, their positions on TPPA have to change.

Professor Jane Kelsey, Faculty of Law, University of Auckland, 1 February 2018
Prof Jane Kelsey
Faculty of Law
The University of Auckland
New Zealand
J.kelsey@auckland.ac.nz

 

Click HERE for further details of the meetings

The re-branded TPPA-11 with little changed is set to be signed in Chile on March 8th! See details of PUBLIC MEETINGS coming up

From It’s Our Future:

The TPPA-11 has had a rebranding to the CPTPPA (Comprehensive and Progressive Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement) – yet there is very little that is comprehensive or progressive about it, and very little has changed from the original TPPA.

The 11 nations that are party to the agreement will be meeting in Chile to sign the TPPA-11 on 8th March.

Come along and hear experts Professor Jane Kelsey, Dr Burcu Kilic, and Laila Harre speak in Auckland and Wellington, and Professor Jane Kelsey plus other speakers in Nelson, Christchurch and Dunedin about what the TPPA-11 will mean for New Zealand.

Event Details

Auckland:  

Monday 12 Feb, 6.30pm, Ellen Melville Centre, corner of High St and Freyberg Place, Auckland CBD
https://www.facebook.com/events/865008510327414/

Wellington: 

Tuesday 14 Feb, 6.30pm, Wesley Church, 75 Taranaki St, Wellington

https://www.facebook.com/events/1578636985577465/

Nelson: 

Tuesday 20 Feb, 7pm, Masonic Lodge, 107 Nile Street, Nelson
https://www.facebook.com/events/1387701038008990/

Christchurch:  

Wednesday 21 Feb, Knox Chruch, 28 Bealey Avenue, Christchurch
https://www.facebook.com/events/405312726576602/

Dunedin: 

Thursday, 22 Feb, Knox Chruch, 449 George St, Dunedin
https://www.facebook.com/events/987240044767300/

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT THE TPPA-11

 

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Tests in 2003 revealed an Inghams food product was GE contaminated

This is obviously quite old but worth a re visit. See how things were creeping in so very long ago? This is not that long after Corngate when the esteemed Helen Clarke let the secretly sown GE corn crops in various places throughout NZ be left to grow to harvest. She initially ordered them pulled up but I suspect corporate persuasion made her change her mind. How dishonest and treacherous can you get? Be aware Kiwis as the article says regarding animal feed, three years ago I rang two producers of chicken and pork here in NZ and neither would admit to GM feed for their livestock, however added they ‘couldn’t rule it out’ because the feed wasn’t labeled as GM. So much for GE free NZ. Like the green image it’s an illusion, a farce, a big LIE.  EnvirowatchRangitikei

Press release – June 5, 2003

Greenpeace today released results that show an Ingham frozen chicken product on sale in New Zealand is contaminated with genetically engineered (GE) soy ingredients (1). Earlier in the year, tests also revealed the Aussie-owned brand uses GE soy in its feed (2).

“Inghams are showing a total disregard for their customers preference – which is for GE-free food,” said Greenpeace campaigner Steve Abel. “Inghams continue to import GE soy meal into New Zealand for use in animal feed – and this latest test shows that Inghams are using GE soy contaminated ingredients in their products too.”

Greenpeace also criticised lax labelling regulations which mean GE feed and many processed ingredients don’t require GE labelling and enter the food chain by stealth.

The environmental organisation is encouraging the public to phone Inghams on 0508 800 785 and express their opposition to GE food. Greenpeace volunteers will be distributing postcards addressed to Inghams and demanding that they remove GE feed and ingredients from the food chain.

“Supermarkets and other users of Inghams products and feed should also demand that the company commit to a GE free policy,” said Abel.

New Zealand’s biggest poultry producer Tegel and their feed subsidiary NRM, shifted to a non-GE feed policy in 2001 following a public campaign by Greenpeace.

“Tegel have set the standard for excluding GE ingredients in animal feed. It’s time for Inghams to clean up their act and stop contaminating New Zealand’s food chain with unwanted GE,” said Abel.

The growing of genetically engineered crops threatens conventional production and the environment and GE foods are insufficiently tested and labelled.

Notes to the Editor:

(1) Inghams “2 Chicken Cordon Bleu” product made and purchased in New Zealand tested positive for GMO Roundup Ready (RR) soy in tests carried out by GeneScan Australia (AgriQuality) on 16 May 2003.

(2) Soy meal destined for Ingham feed mills in New Zealand tested positive for RR soy after tests by GeneScan on 14 March 2003.

 

Pasted from http://www.greenpeace.org/new-zealand/en/press/new-test-reveals-inghams-food/

NZ is ‘perceived’ to be ‘the least corrupt country in the world’ according to Transparency Int Corruption Perception index – it’s not says an anti-corruption whistleblower

NZ is ‘perceived’ to be ‘the least corrupt country in the world’ according to the 2016 Transparency International ‘Corruption Perception Index’.
NZ, in the opinion of experienced anti-corruption whistle-blower Penny Bright, is a ‘corrupt, polluted tax haven – a banana republic – without the bananas’.

“Throw Transparency International’s ‘Corruption Perception Index’ into the rubbish bin of history!”

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Follow the link to watch the video:

Penny Bright speaks outside Rutherford House – venue of the meeting organised by Transparency International NZ for the Chair of the Board of Transparency International (TI) Jose Ugas on 1 August 2017.

Video recorded:
Wednesday 2 August 2017.

WHY: It’s time to move from corruption measurement based on ‘perception’ to REALITY.

NZ is ‘perceived’ to be ‘the
least corrupt country in the
world’ according to the 2016 Transparency International
‘Corruption Perception Index’.

NZ, in the opinion of experienced anti-corruption whistle-blower Penny Bright, is a ‘corrupt, polluted tax haven – a banana republic – without the bananas’.

That’s what she told the Chair of the Board of TI, Jose Ugaz, in front of 200 attendees at this meeting, and provided evidence, in the form of her ACTION PLAN for Transparency and Accountability.

(Penny Bright has just returned from The Hague, and ‘blew the whistle’ making the same points at the World Justice Project 2017 International Rule Of Law Forum – attended by 400 ‘experts’ from 75 countries).

PLEASE WATCH AND SHARE!
https://www.facebook.com/penny.bright.104/videos/1751010424911642/

Clean, green New Zealand is a lie – and a warning for Britain’s countryside

If you don’t believe NZ is polluted to the hilt type pollution &/or water into the searchbox. Or go to categories. We are also slathered relentlessly with toxic poisons including 1080 and glyphosate. The headline is correct, clean and green is a complete and utter lie.
EnvirowatchRangitikei

From theguardian.com

Michael Gove plans to cut farmers’ subsidies while enhancing the environment post-Brexit. New Zealand’s cattle-wrecked land shows the folly of his thinking

There can’t be a more successful tourism marketing campaign than “100% Pure New Zealand”. And New Zealand is seen as a world leader in another respect: how its farmers sell their food globally without government subsidies. But the tension between these two successes has been exposed by Sir Tim Smit, the co-founder of the Eden Project in Cornwall.

Smit has sparked a minor international incident by declaring that New Zealand is “so pure the people of Christchurch won’t even swim in the river Avon. Most of the lakes are full of algae. It is like a beautiful person with cancer.” He was speaking to British landowners pondering the New Zealand model for post-Brexit agriculture. British farmers currently receive £3bn in subsidies each year; environment secretary Michael Gove must design a much smaller subsidy system – or scrap it altogether.

Smit argues that New Zealand is no inspiration despite its farmers surviving the removal of subsidies in 1984. Their response has been to intensify, and export milk to China.

Landscapes that George Monbiot might describe as sheep-wrecked are now cattle-wrecked; the cost, argues Smit, is water quality, as nitrates from fertilisers flood into rivers. Smit’s critique has been endorsed not only by Greenpeace New Zealand but also by the chief executive of New Zealand’s fish and game council, Martin Taylor, who calls the country’s clean, green image “a facade”. Brexit marks a crossroads for the British countryside. Gove believes we can boost agricultural productivity while also enhancing the environment. His vision isn’t so dissimilar from some environmentalists’: subsidy-dependent upland farming will cease (and some land even rewilded) while production is intensified on surviving lowland farms.

But the idea that we can have it all – cheap food, pristine environments and profitable farmers – is naive.

READ MORE

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/dec/04/new-zealand-britain-countryside-michael-gove-brexit?


 

 

A pollution problem you probably weren’t aware of – concern expressed by an Akaroa resident, a problem dubbed an “international embarrassment” by Victoria University Law Lecturer

Here is a topic that’s slipped somewhat under the radar and is affecting beautiful Akaroa in the South Island … the pollution from cruise ships. An Akaroa reader affected by this issue to the extent they sometimes wear a mask, contacted me recently saying they’d tried both government and media channels with a largely ‘not interested’ response. Turns out the issue’s been written about by a University lecturer Dr Bevan Marten (link below the reader’s piece) who says:

New Zealand’s lack of action over air pollution from shipping is an international embarrassment… Dr Bevan Marten

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Cruise ships in Akaroa’s harbour with engines pumping all day [Photo supplied]
So from Akaroa:

It is with a heavy heart I farewell the winter … cold, clear, cleansing southerly winds blowing through the harbour heads straight from the Antarctic.

Today, as dawn breaks , the onslaught of mighty tourism blows through the heads. Just one of 80 ships to visit this season.

Another season of poisonous sulphurous emissions … 12 hours day … often 2 or 3 ships per day … 7am to 7pm.

The air is sharp … stings the throat … wear a mask outside and keep windows closed.

Because of the shallowness of the harbour these floating cities moor out in the open harbour. The engines are pumping all day, swinging 360 degrees on their mooring to stay facing the prevailing winds.

The sediment disturbance turns the harbour a milky grey.

What does this do to the Hector dolphins, the paua beds?

Atmospheric pollution. Ocean pollution.

Seven pm and the engines ramp up for departure. The smoke spreads, the sediment spreads. The bilge water pumps out into our harbour.

Gone … ’til tomorrow. Here til March 2018…

Our council bans woodburners in Chch for home heating. Our council plans to have electric cars. Why bother?

Six months of poison pumping into our air negates all such clever initiatives.

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Swinging 360 degrees on their mooring what are these cruise ships doing to the marine life – the hector dolphins and paua? [Photo: supplied]

NZ’s ignoring dark cruise ship undercurrent

Dr Bevan Marten is a Senior Lecturer in Victoria University of Wellington’s School of Law, specialising in maritime and transport law. He is scathing about the damage those gleaming white cruise ships are doing to the environment.

New Zealand’s lack of action over air pollution from shipping is an international embarrassment. This is true of both the country’s commitment to addressing global climate change and the safeguarding of local air quality. Walking along Auckland’s waterfront, that gleaming white cruise ship may look spotless but the fumes coming out of its funnel might be anything but. It’s time to tell the Government to get serious.

Larger ships mostly burn “bunker” fuel, a grade of oil closer to Marmite than anything the local service station will pour you. It’s also a key source of pollutants such as sulphur dioxides, nitrogen oxides and particulate matter.

Sulphur dioxide in particular creates a risk to human health, despite not having the telltale smog we associate with the problems faced in cities like Beijing. And while we have largely removed sulphur dioxide emissions from road vehicles and some industries, shipping remains a major source of this pollutant.

The global community has long acknowledged this issue. In 1997, countries agreed to Annex VI of the International Convention on the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (known as MARPOL, short for marine pollution). In addition to rules improving ship engine efficiency, this included a promise to reduce the maximum sulphur content of ships’ fuel to 3.5 percent in 2012 and 0.5 percent in 2020. Between 2006 and 2014, special emission control areas covering much of Northern Europe and North America entered into force, bringing sulphur content there down to just 0.1 percent.

Although 86 other countries are party to the Annex VI agreement, New Zealand has never signed up. This makes us a real outlier internationally. The only other OECD countries in this position are Iceland, Israel and Mexico. The only other countries in the South Pacific Commission to ignore it are Fiji and the Solomon Islands.

READ MORE

https://www.newsroom.co.nz/@future-learning/2017/03/12/8540/cruise-ships-leave-dark-wake

 

THREE years on, two women alleging 1080 poisoning while picnicking STILL waiting for answers from NZ Health

Be sure to listen to the audio in the radionz article. A reader has pointed out that the National Poisons Center Director (towards the end of the audio) says there is no test he knows of for 1080 poisoning. The toxicologist says it should not be used anywhere where humans could come into contact with it. Remember the recent images of the children near 1080 on the walking track in a Timaru drop zone?

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From radionz

Two women who believe they were poisoned by 1080 more than three years ago say it’s ridiculous they are still waiting for answers from health officials. Gwen Gardner and her sister were having a picnic inland from Greymouth when a helicopter flew over them. A while later they began to feel sick, and when they returned to their car they noticed 1080 pellets nearby. The West Coast Medical Officer of Health gave the women a draft report in 2015 but they have not heard from her since.

LISTEN AT THE LINK HERE:

http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/2018619835/two-alleging-1080-poisoning-still-waiting-for-answers