Tag Archives: Haast

More on the disposal of 1080 in our landfills

The Whanganui item in this is the gob smacker. Unlined hole, old wetlands reserve turned landfill, undisclosed to public by all appearances, right dab next to a PRIMARY SCHOOL! How irresponsible is THAT? … EWR.

From NO to 1080 use in NZ FB page

1080 poison (Sodium Monofluoroacetate) is a hazardous chemical that is repeatedly dumped in New Zealand’s landfill sites (official and unofficial) without consideration for the potential harm. Contrary to some claims, 1080 does not easily breakdown into ‘harmless by-products’: one teaspoon of the poison can kill and harm as many as a hundred adults. It is highly lethal, stable in water, disperses readily through the environment, and in some conditions remains poisonous for months, if not years. For instance, in March 2000, 20 tonnes of mixed, unwanted 1080 poison baits, between 8-20 years old, were buried in West Coast farmland. When tested a few months later, the substance was still highly toxic.

Official Informatiom Act responses have revealed that for decades, Auckland, Canterbury, Winton, Whanganui and Marton landfills have all been recipients of tonnes of unwanted 1080 poison. This is because according the manufacturers, the cereal baits have a limited shelf-life (how convenient for their profit margins?). Apparently, depending upon storage environments, damp and mould can affect the palatability and structure of the poison baits, which can mean they are unstable, unsafe and unsuitable to be distributed aerially via the helicopter hoppers. To summarise some of our findings:

• In August 1996, over 12 tonnes of unwanted highly toxic 1080 poison baits were buried in a purpose-dug pit in a managed landfill site at Winton, central Southland. Weeks after the burial, toxic 1080 was still present in some of the groundwater samples (despite unreliable testing methodology).

• 66 tonnes of 1080 poison baits, originally intended for Makarora aerial pest control operation (2015) were unused because of the poor weather. The spoiled poison baits were sent to a Manawatu-Whanganui landfill site (Probably, Marton).

• A storage shed in Haast was swamped during recent flooding, and the rising river water damaged over 16 tonnes of toxic 1080 bait. This week, that poison has been buried at…you guessed it, Marton.

• In February 2018, 600kgs of 1080 poison baits was transported from the Whitianga storage site (within a residential area) to a North Auckland landfill.

• Also in 1996, in Whanganui (near the 1080 poison factory) 61 tonnes of 1080 poison cereal bait was buried in a shallow, unlined hole at the landfill site, now known as Balgownie Reserve. Tragically, this area was previously a precious wetland of historical and cultural significance. A primary school is situated next door.

There are many other stories waiting to be exposed. Meanwhile, none of New Zealand’s authorities adheres to international guidelines on toxic waste disposal, including the requirement to monitor community health in these areas. And concerns are repeatedly raised about potential harmful affects from the storage, disposal and aerial distribution of 1080 poison.

In the USA and in Europe, authorities are waking-up to their responsibilities to citizens. New funding is being provided to enable the costly clean-up of old toxic dump sites, and this involves specialists digging up the hazardous waste and disposing of it safely. Public health is a priority.

It’s bad enough to distribute tonnes of 1080 poison baits over thousands of hectares—66 tonnes of the poison baits could kill or seriously harm almost the whole population of New Zealand. It’s another thing however to dump this amount of lethally toxic substance into one shallow hole. What impact could a highly concentrated amount of this toxic chemical have on the health of nearby, unknowing, small communities?

When is the New Zealand Government going to face up to the magnitude of our ongoing soil and water contamination, stop the dumping of hazardous waste and start the crucial clean-up operations?

DoC sends 116 TONNES 1080 poison to landfill, 2016-2019 … 66 TONNES to the Manawatu-Whanganui region

By Carol Sawyer

This includes 66 tonnes of 1080 baits targeted for the 33,000 ha aerial 1080 drop at Makarora in 2015.

The pre-feed was dropped at Makarora but the poison was not. Bad timing, and initial faulty flight charts, (by HeliOtago Ltd presumably), meant the drop was postponed and then foiled by the onset of winter.

See story here:

https://www.facebook.com/carol.sawyer.3511/posts/1712843725662613

DoC Wanaka announced the poisoning would happen the following Spring but this never eventuated. The poison was dumped. They have conveniently left this out of the OIA response to John Veysey in February, 2019 (see attached), and pretended they haven’t kept records.

Just as well WE do !!!

The comment in the OIA response to Mr. Thompson about Makarora, February, 2017 – “No toxic bait was transported to the operation site. The transport cost from storage to landfill was $8,000” – is I think, just DoC being tricky. It was again rumoured to have been stored at the storage shed at Haast. This is backed up by the fact that the poison operation had been due to happen any day, but as the prefeed didn’t happen until May 27, 2015, winter had set in and they just couldn’t drop the poison.
The loading site at Cameron Flat, Makarora, would have been too dark and cold. As it was, the prefeed was done in icy conditions (see photos).

So WHY did DoC leave the 66 tonnes out of the “1080 poison to landfill” chart sent to John Veysey of Coromandel as a result of his OIA request in February this year? The OIA response only admits to 34.31 tonnes of 1080 poison to landfill. (See attached)

Add in the 66 tonnes from 2015/16 and the 16.2 tonnes of flood-damaged 1080 poison baits from Haast this year (as stated in a recent OIA response to David Haynes), and we have a massive 116.51 tonnes 1080 baits to landfill… admitted to by DoC anyway. Is this ALL ?!!! How much have OSPRI and regional councils dumped?

Also, where in the ‘Manawatu-Wanganui region’ were the 66 tonnes of 1080 baits dumped? At the Bonny Glen landfill at Marton again?

66837909_2398692047077774_1137051669167603712_n

66391163_2398692200411092_968092178343526400_n66586460_2398697757077203_396849549311737856_n66820048_2398697787077200_5624898812490285056_n

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

RELATED POST:

https://envirowatchrangitikei.wordpress.com/2016/03/19/submission-reveals-negligence-by-authorities-regarding-leachate-disposal-2/

Storing a Class 1A Ecotoxin safely: Why was a quantity of 1080 sufficient to kill 540,000 adult humans stored in a South Is flood-prone shed that subsequently flooded?

1080 STORAGE SHED FLOODED – WHY HAVE WE NOT HEARD ABOUT THIS?

By Carol Sawyer

57049086_2338531776427135_278391696998268928_n

On 25 and 26 March, 2019, extremely severe rainfall caused extensive flooding on the West Coast of the South Island. The bridge over the Waiho River at Franz Josef was swept away., and the State Highway, the only access road up the Coast, cut in two.

57485048_2338531586427154_5469156765692067840_n

Further south, on the banks of the Okuru River just south of Haast, is Nolan Road, home to members of the Nolan family and JJ Nolan, owner of ‘JJ Nolan’s Transport Ltd’. JJ Nolan’s transport has, for very many years, transported 1080 poison baits south from Whanganui to the South Island, to Haast, Makarora, etc. … to 1080 drop loading zones, or to Northern Southland Transport in Te Anau, who then move it on to 1080 drop loading zones, etc. Nolan trucks are travelling south from Whanganui right now, in fact. They are part of the big 1080 Gravy Train.

On Nolan Road, Okuru, is a shed used for storing 1080 poison baits. This latest flood swept through the properties pictured above in the aerial photograph, including, I am told, the 1080 storage shed. It is rumoured the shed contained at least 25 tonnes of 1080 baits at the time. As you can see (photo slide show below), this four bay shed could hold a large amount of 1080 poison baits. 25 tonnes is only approximately one truck and trailer unit. You can see a truck and trailer curtain-sider beside the storage shed, which gives you some idea. Only half the depth of the storage shed is visible in the street view photos, by the way.

(These photos were taken completely legally from Nolan Road, which is a public road. The ‘Closed area’ sign at Nolan Creek refers to whitebaiting. It says “Nolan Creek – This waterway is closed to whitebait fishing”)

Floods in this area are not new. Here is a video of a massive flood in the Haast area in 1994;

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c_Zsjsgx1t8

Why, then,would you build a 1080 storage shed in a flood-prone area?! Why did DoC give this contractor permission to store 1080 baits here?​ The second aerial photo shows old river courses (marked with red dotted lines) ! This is not a place one should even store chook food!!​

1080 poison disperses in water quickly and easily, so imagine floodwaters ebbing away and imagine how enormous the concentration of pure 1080 poison in the last water to leach out of fadges of baits would be ! (1) (2)

The first property you come to on Nolan Road, I have been told, belongs to Maurice and Kathleen Nolan. In the Otago Daily Times (8 April, 2019), it is reported of this house:

“Wild weather lashed the West Coast last month, forcing the postponement of the calf sale for a week – and flooding Mr and Mrs Nolan’s house, the water reaching over the top of their dining room chairs”

TVOne News apparently reported a cottage on the next property along ( the one with the storage shed on it ) as being destroyed by the flood, too.

I am told the occupiers of all three of these properties had to move to the local camping ground after the flood.

The photos show the property with the 1080 storage shed and also show you Nolan Creek, a bit further along the road, to give you some idea of flood damage. Nolan Creek runs just metres behind the 1080 storage shed, incidentally, then crosses Nolan Road and runs into the Okuru River.

The high flood level is evident from the grass hanging on the fence and the silage plastic wrapped around the top of the fence in front of the 1080 storage shed.

If it is true, as rumoured, that the shed contained a minimum of 25 tonnes of 1080 baits at the time, I should explain to you how very lethal this is :

25 tonnes of 1080 baits contain 37.5 kgs of pure 1080 poison.

The LD50 for a human being: “Based on fatal or near-fatal cases of human poisonings, the dangerous dose for humans is 0.5-2.0 mg/kg BW (Negherbon 1959)”

If we take the lowest figure that means that 35mgs pure 1080 poison can kill a 70 kg adult human being.

Therefore 25 tonnes of 1080 baits contain enough pure 1080 poison to kill as many as 540,000 people and poison another 540,000!!!

SHOULD ENOUGH 1080 TO KILL 540,000 ADULT HUMANS BE STORED IN A FLOOD-PRONE SHED?!!

****************************************************************

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Photos :
Streetviews – Joel Lund
Captions and graphics on aerial views – Richard Healey
Photos of flooded fenceposts on drive of first Nolan property – sent to me anonymously.
‘JJ Nolan’ truck at aerial 1080 drop, Makarora – February, 2017 – Carol Sawyer

****************************************************************

Richard Healey comments on this information :

“Hmmm… that shed is likely to have standard 6m bays, but lets be conservative and say 5m. That makes the height to the top of the doors a bit over 4m. The shed is 70% as deep as it is wide so 14m.
That makes the volume somewhere around 1,100 cubic metres. If you were to fill that to the top with wheat that would be 870 Tonne so 25T would take up about 1/32 of the space. I’m picking that bait doesn’t pack anywhere as well as wheat but it does show just how much 1080 bait you could stack in there.
At 0.15% pure 1080, and assuming that bait is 60% as dense as wheat, that’s a maximum of 783kg of highly water soluble toxin in a tanalised-post farm shed, on a flood plain, with no bunding or other containment measures. Even if it’s near the rumoured 25T that would amount to more than 37kg of pure 1080. Who issued the permit for that storage?!”

***********************************
(1) Studies reported in the ERMA Reassessment of 1080 in 2007 showed that 1080 leached readily out of baits that were made wet by sprinklers:

“rapid decline [in 1080 concentration in cereal baits on turf under sprinklers] (ERMA Agency Appendix C page 380)

“1080 was detected in soil under the baits after 20mm rain, reaching a maximum after 100mm and close to the LOD after 250 mm” (ERMA Agency Appendix C page 381)

Also one of the reasons for its low rate of detection in water samples taken after 1080 drops was rapid loss of 1080 from the baits in water:

“the reason for so many non-detects in water monitoring..may be partly due to..rapid..dilution or loss of 1080 from, and disintegration of..baits within the first 12 hours of deposition..the author [Suren, 2006] recommends sampling within 4-8 hours..frequently resource consents require monitoring one day or more after..the operation” ERMA Agency Appendix E page 473″S

(2) Richard Healey comments again :

“There have been a couple of studies that give some clues about what happens to the 1080 when it comes into contact with water. Ogilvie, in “Uptake of 1080 by Watercress and Puha – Culturally Important plants used for food”, has a couple of observations that give a clue as to how contaminated the land around the Okuru will now be:
“A study by Suren (2006) examined the fate of 1080 baits in a controlled laboratory flow tank, and found 50% of the 1080 leached after 5 hours submerged in the water, and >90% leached after 24 hours, thus being very rapid. While the flow rate used in Suren’s (2006) controlled experiment was faster than the flow rates recorded here (0.2 L/sec as opposed to an overall stream flow of 0.042 – 0.044 L/sec in this research), it still indicates the rapid deterioration and leaching of 1080 from baits submerged in flowing water”.

That study also shows that Watercress is particularly good at sucking 1080 out of water and concentrating it in plant material. The authors couldn’t find detectable levels of 1080 in water 14 hours after dropping baits into a very gentle stream, yet toxicity within the plants continued to build for the next seven days to a peak level of 63 ppb. The study methodology and reporting are however woeful.

It doesn’t seem to have occurred to the authors that water velocity is likely to be an important factor and so they give flow rates (for an undefined cross-section) which tells us nothing about how much water passed over each bait. They then confuse the issue by labeling flow rate as velocity.

One thing is absolutely certain however, someone should be checking the inventory log for that shed and sampling the hell out of the surrounding area.”

SOURCE: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1174446982637285/?multi_permalinks=2214282398653733&notif_id=1555472535603152&notif_t=group_activity