What exactly happened at the fire at the Horizons Council depot Levin, in January? We know that 1080 and other poisons were kept there. We are not told how much, although it could have been up to 100 tonnes. We know that local residents were not aware of the potential dangers of the toxic fumes that may have reached their homes. Note that the council have admitted that “1080 [poison] casing was damaged in the fire.” We also know that the local DHB and therefore the Medical Officer of Health were not informed about the fire via Fire & EmergencyNZ, nor Horizons, nor WorksafeNZ. This should have been a ‘notifiable incident’ with strict health and safety procedures in place, including an evacuation plan for nearby residents and drainage facilities for the fire equipment that prevented contamination of the water-tables.
Lake Horowhenua epitomises the New Zealand Government’s disdain for its indigenous people – both past and present. Throughout the history of Aotearoa, Mua-Upoko has always been at the mercy of a Crown intent on suppressing the cultural and environmental concerns of the indigenous owners of this lake in order to enhance the recreational and economic pursuits of the Pakeha.
Most recently, it was the crux of a case appealed to the Supreme Court, a court supposedly attuned to the nuances of the Treaty of Waitangi. In effect, the Supreme Court has invalidated itself. And Parliament as well. By ceding sovereignty, the Chiefs of New Zealand were guaranteed by the Queen of England ‘full, exclusive and undisturbed possession’ of lands and other property they and their descendants individually or collectively possess.
The Crown’s jurisdiction, its authority to govern therefore rests upon compliance with the Treaty. Before all nations at the United Nations human rights hearing in Geneva on 30 January 2014, the Minister of Justice affirmed the Treaty of Waitangi to be New Zealand’s founding document. Without compliance, this Treaty disintegrates.
And so does governance by Parliament and jurisdiction from the courts.
In terms of ownership, Lake Horowhenua is unique. It is, and always has been owned by
Mua-Upoko; since 1886 in English title.
But there is more to the legend of the lake than constitutional matters of property rights.
Lake Horowhenua was purchased not in cash. It was bought in blood. Here on the artificial islands Mua-Upoko created for their own refuge, Te Rauparaha and his Ngati Toa
raiders stockaded men, women and children ‘killing some from day to day as required for food’. Concealed in clearings nearby, Taueki and the remnants of Mua-Upoko would hear their kin, across the silence of the lake; unable to rescue them if their tribe was to survive.
Type ‘Horowhenua’ into the search box for further articles on the damning history of Lake Horowhenua. See also ‘categories’ (left of page) & our Local Govt Watch pages, Horowhenua. A must read also is the author’s book about the Lake called ‘Man of Convictions’.
This is right on topic and worth a re-visit in light of recent goings on around the country. We as a nation have adopted such a time worn clean green image, it doesn’t occur to many that the reality of the image died long ago, especially with only 40% of our rivers now clean enough to swim in. The clean and green has spilled over long ago into every area of our lives to the extent most Kiwis wouldn’t dream of believing corporations lie to us. Invited over a year ago to speak to a group of senior cits about Smart Meters (aka here as Advanced Meters) my information was greeted in some corners with snickers and whispers. We are a very trusting nation, particularly that generation. That was great three and four decades ago. It isn’t any more. If you are that trusting now you are fair game and seen as simply a sucker. I watch with angst as I see it played out before me … the elderly treated as cash cows by enterprising and unscrupulous business people, and particularly real estate agents. If you’re snickering now please go and watch The Corporation documentary (halfway down the ‘Corporations’ page). That will make you stop. Not to get off topic here (I could say much more but I won’t) … our District Councils have come under much scrutiny of late with many particularly savvy people holding them to the lip service they tend to pay on their websites. Check out our Local Government Watch pages on the site menu for some of the happenings around your country Kiwis. All is not as good as many believe. Listen to the story of the man in Rodney who exposed the corruption in his District Council. He lost his home and business. Certain ones will deal to those who rock the boat it seems.
The following article is from the Whale Oil blog and raises some important data to ponder on. EnvirowatchRangitikei
by Cameron Slater on August 21, 2015
With three officers from Auckland Council CCO – Auckland Transport – now set to go on trial for bribery it is a convenient opportunity to raise the issue of corruption in local authorities.
Most ordinary citizens have no idea that corruption is rife. But there are varying types of corrupt behaviour and unless one is familiar with the law they can be overlooked.
Two of the most common forms of corruption occur so often you think it’s normal.
These two particular forms of corruption do not result in personal gain – such as back pocketing cash. But they do result in breaking the law, and they happen daily.
The first is ‘malfeasance’ and the second is ‘misfeasance’.
Both are the abuse of authority – or the position of authority.
These generally occur by breaking the rule of law. In NZ the laws that generally govern Local Government are the LGA (Local Government Act) and the RMA (Resource Management Act). Some other laws like the Public Works Act are part and parcel as well.
Breaking the law for ordinary citizens results in penalties. If caught it can do the same for those in local government but nobody is policing them so nothing happens.
Imagine … a transformation from the stunning, pristine view above … to this!
How corporate, big business loves to impose their footprint, all with an eye to profits and usually without true consultation or consent from the people their decisions will affect.
If you’re not up to speed with wind farms and how they work take a look at the events that have gone down with this particular proposed wind farm in the central Hihitahi Plateau, North Island, NZ. Follow the links also to the website that is the voice of those who are trying to oppose this violation of the environment. The site features articles and details of their struggle. There are many question marks over the cost efficiency and safety to human health of wind farms.
PROJECT CENTRAL WIND
Introduction & Timeline of Events:
Meridian Energy Limited (MEL) a state owned enterprise, sought and obtained consents for two wind monitoring masts on the Hihitahi Plateau in 2006 in preparation for a proposed wind farm in the area. MEL subsequently sought resource consent in 2008 for Project Central Wind (PCW) – a 47 square kilometre site located east of SH1 between Waiouru and Taihape and just north of Moawhango. The site covered six farm properties and sits within three local government jurisdictions – Rangitikei District, Ruapehu District, and Manawatu-Wanganui (Horizons) Region. Consent was sought for the construction of 52 x 135m turbines and ancilliary works. Consent with some conditions was granted 11 February 2009…. Read more: https://envirowatchrangitikei.wordpress.com/project-central-wind/
What is laughable about this is the council’s pledge to make the waters swimmable! It is DCs & Horizons that pollute them in the first place with their consents to industry & farming, that they don’t even police correctly. See the links here as witness to that as the pollution of waterways plays out in the Horowhenua district. Same scenario, but not 1080. Nevertheless blatant pollution that is flatly denied by those responsible. Two DC Crs and local iwi Ngati Whakatere have vehemently opposed and exposed this corruption, one Cr stating that the DC is a “top drawer polluter”. We saw recently also the polluting of Auckland’s public water supply with Council’s blessing.
This is playing out also in many NZ regions (see our LG Watch pages). It is mere lip service. Read their site spin then see what they actually do (or don’t would be more appropriate). So now they’re going to clean up the rivers by adding dead 1080 infused carcasses? This is about Agenda 21. And note who will have to pay out the millions, farmers & property owners, doubtless like everything else they try to shut down, it will become an unmanageable burden & drive them off the land. See our Agenda 21/2030 pages for more info on that, particularly, watch Anne Bressington’s video there, a former Australian politician who caught on to what is really going on. This plan is global.
Check out also our pages on 1080 and other chemical pollutants.
Waikato Regional Council Permits Poisoning of Waterways to Kill Deer …
A massive collaboration process has taken place over the last three years to clean up the Waikato, and Waipa river catchments in the Waikato Region of New Zealand. To make them “swimmable”.
Waikato Regional Council has championed the project from the get-go, back in 2013. The idea is to place tighter restrictions on private land use, and reduce pollution to the waterways by monitoring both direct and indirect pollutant discharges. The targeted contaminants are Nutrients (N & P), sediments, and E Coli.
It has been suggested that farmers and property owners will have to fork out over 500 million dollars to implement the policies, over time. Stakeholders involved with the round-table meetings have reportedly included Fonterra, Dairy NZ, Beef & Lamb, energy companies, and many more. The dream is big and it’s bold, but does it go far enough?
This video https://youtu.be/CKBHIop0riw released by New Zealand film makers Clyde and Steve Graf appears to provide strong evidence that 1080 poison baits (a deadly pesticide made in America) are cast across forests and directly into forests streams in the Waikato Region. And to top it off, it is implied that the Council that is leading the Healthy Rivers – Wai Ora project, is the same Council that writes the permits that allow the aerial poison discharges to take place, and directly into water – running water.
The video also highlights contradictions within the Ministry for Primary Industries. MPI, as it’s known in New Zealand, is shown making a public plea on TV One News for all New Zealanders to stand up against animal cruelty, and to inform MPI if they should encounter it.
More indiscriminate poisoning of paradise, the no longer clean green Aotearoa. As the farmer points out, “they do the drops, and they walk away. They never see the aftermath like we see.” If you feel 1080 is safe and nothing to worry about, please watch the Graf Boys’ videos on Youtube (see our 1080 pages for links). Real eye openers! And remember the NZ corporation parading as a government has vested interests in its continued use with recently revealed investments in the poison.
On the 3rd Of July 1080 poison bait was spread across 50,000 hectares of the Hauhungaroa Ranges, which are situated on Western Bays of Lake Taupo.
Beef and sheep farmer Lance Aldrige was informed by a farm hand that he had found four poisoned deer laying on the farm four days after the aerial operation was completed. A field trip was arranged so that Waikato Regional Councillors could be shown the impacts of the resource consents their Council issues.
Many more poisoned deer were found as the group made their way around the farm and bush edges. Lance Aldridge has had to endure the impacts of aerial poison drops for over 30 years ” This is the sort of thing a lot of people don’t see. They do the drops, and they walk away. They never see the aftermath like we see.” He goes on to explain on camera how the operations are difficult to live and work around.
Recent news in February 2016 highlighted the state of Shannon’s waste water treatment plant. This has all been denied (the pollution that is) by the Horowhenua District Council. The footage and photos don’t lie however. To see the original videos posted see links below. We now have a FB page devoted solely to Horowhenua issues in the interests of disseminating the info and supporting those who are standing up to make changes to the status quo. Note, to see all ten videos, go to the Youtube icon on the bottom right of the video and watch on Youtube. You will see there plenty more footage of Horowhenua and Manawatu pollution by what appears to be partially treated sewage and farm effluent.
Cr Michael Feyen is one of those and has stated today on Facebook:
“As a Horowhenua District Councillor I want to make it very clear that Central Government, Horizons Regional Council and Horowhenua District Council are most definitely serial polluters of our water-ways and vast improvements in the governance are necessary if we are to leave anything for future generations. Please post and share and the word will get there.”
“In early December 2014 Ngati Whakatere had called me out as a Horowhenua District Councillor to look at their concerns of pollution to the waterways from the Shannon sewage treatment plant.
The following sequence of films clips was taken by myself, Horowhenua District Cr Michael Feyen – of waste water being pumped from the Shannon sewage treatment ponds into the Otauru Stream and into the Manawatu River. These clips back up Councillor Campbell’s (link below) recent film of the same type of disgusting practices of pollution to our waterways by HDC with Horizons Regional Council’s blessing. Both organizations are serial polluters. Please take the time to watch all the videos. When called, Horizons did not send anybody out to investigate. Obviously nothing has changed and no one was held accountable.
Chinese plastic clothes baskets are the filters used by Horizons and HDC & their contractor”.
See our other Local Govt Watch pages for more info & links, &/or search categories for further related articles (at left of any page).
Please also consider liking our FB page &/or following our blog (right of any page) and do spread the word on all the untruths we have been told! Use the share buttons!
I was contacted this week by residents who live in town reporting a foul, sewage-like smell blowing from the direction of the Bonny Glen landfill situated some 6-7 km away. This is in addition to the smell of passing trucks which, as previously reported, drop bits of refuse on the roads. Two of those people who gave feedback on the truck situation had this to say:
truck numbers are static but there are bigger and heavier truck and trailer units
3 went past within 5 minutes this morning at 7.10am, empty, and making a really loud crash sound as they hit the bumps and manhole covers outside our house, shaking the house
The tankers taking leachate to the wastewater treatment start about 7-7.30am and continue until approx. 4pm, making about 7-8 round trips per day (also report 12 pday). However since this report of last year, these days the leachate tanker is seldom seen (so have they changed routes?)
How that is affecting the plant is unknown, but I understand that RDC are to spend upwards of $1million to upgrade to cope with this leachate, a good example of the ratepayers subsidising a corporation? (Yes indeed)
Doors and windows are warped and sticking due it’s believed, to the continual earthquake-like house shaking that goes on with the passing trucks
Is the leachate tanker now taking a different route given it’s not seen any more? At late last year’s reporting by community members the leachate tanker count was 12 sometimes 13 trips on average per day. This is a considerably higher than the mere 2 to 3 figure bandied around last year and signals cause for concern at the volume being dumped in the WWTP, given the plant was not coping with 2-3 loads.
Readers may recall the submission made to the consent hearings last year (2015) by a (then) local man, Hamish Allan, on the issue of leachate and the Tutaenui Stream’s pollution. At the time he was a member of the Marton Community Committee (MCC – a conduit for action between the public and Council) and he said that:
“…a member of the public came to us because they were concerned about ‘Enviro Waste’ trucks disposing of industrial waste from Bonny Glen down a manhole in ‘the junction’. “
Mr Allan outlines the difficult process he experienced in getting any action on this issue. He said that: “…by bringing up the issue of the leachate in our recommendations we were genuinely endeavouring to be an effective liason with the community so…
What could be a relatively simple & democratic process – providing straight-forward answers to straight-forward questions – became an opportunity for Council to tell us off about small-scale procedural matters, with only one councillor voting against the motion, to her eternal credit.
What’s more, the minutes of the Community Committee meeting in February 2012 detail Council’s deliberate attempt at avoiding any direct response to the issue of the leachate…”
… they simply refused to accept the recommendation of the MCC! You can read the submission yourself here. You will find there also, full details of the ongoing and shocking non compliance issue regarding the pollution of the Tutaenui Stream.
In conclusion, the MCC appears to be giving merely the illusion of a democratic process.
Clearly from Mr Allan’s report of 2011 and 12 events, that avenue for addressing pertinent issues didn’t work. I attended one of the MCC meetings last year to ask when an in-stream biota survey would be conducted to assess the aquatic life of the stream. They should be made three yearly according to the consent, however in Mr Allan’s submission he points out that there hadn’t been one since 2002. At the meeting I attended the Mayor Andy Watson was present and spoke to my question. There was no date given for a survey nor any indication there would even be one. In answer to my query, what action should I take as a member of the public or words to that effect, I was advised to email the Council (ie the Mayor and Councilors). I did that subsequently and have heard NOTHING since.
Clearly also, the democratic processes within your democratically elected council are not working in favour of you the public who incidentally are funding the whole machine with your rates. Whom it does appear to be working for are the Bonny Glen Landfill owners, Midwest Disposals.
To read more on historic feedback on the vagaries of the landfill go here.
For the history of the landfill and the quintupling (almost) of its original size go here.
Here we have an article from the Manawatu Standard (under ‘opinion’) that is rare in its honesty, about the machinations of our environmental ‘protection’ agencies in drawing environmental protection groups into their fold. It’s called ‘collaboration’ but is not what it seems, as the article very honestly points out, titling the collaboration process ‘unmitigated bull faeces’. How refreshing to hear such truth. Our Councils and Horizons pay lip service to environmental protection, bandying around the Agenda 21 catchwords, ‘sustainable development’ and ‘smart growth’ all the while continuing on their ‘polluting for personal profit’ trajectory. If you want to see extreme water pollution, check out Lake Horowhenua, once the pristine food basket of local people Muaupoko, it’s been polluted for decades with human faeces, never mind bull faeces, although some of that goes in there as well. We’ve
also watched this recently with the leachate saga at the Bonny Glen landfill where the ‘gentleman’s agreement’ has allowed unknown amounts of toxic leachate, over and beyond the consent levels, into the Rangitikei waterways. And the powers that be continue to drag the chain with their hands firmly in the pockets of the landfill corporation. Equally farcical was the ‘independent’ consent hearing; it was held 45 minutes travel from those it affected most, and anybody who attended could see it was a done deal, the chair saying on one occasion ‘when the consents are granted’, a Freudian slip he quickly corrected. This has all been going on since the late ’80s and particularly since our country became a registered corporation owned by Queen Elizabeth II. Corporations require profits not clean environments, however they strategically put up a smokescreen that provides the illusion they want to protect the environment, pretending to collaborate, as this article from the Manawatu Standard points out, particularly in the fact that one of the collaborators has resigned … “Fish & Game’s chief executive Bryce Johnson said changes to the forum’s rules around membership and restrictions on the ability to speak out had “essentially compelled us to resign”… ” read more
An article in the Manawatu Standard reports on a Waitangi Tribunal Hearing that began in Levin today, 5th October 2015
A visit to the Horowhenua district earlier this year led me to discover the shocking history of this lake, in particular, the way the owners, the Muaupoko Iwi have been treated throughout the whole process. (Lake Horowhenua is near Levin). Download and read the whole history of the Lake and how it was incrementally taken over, a long but essential read to understand the background of this story:
“In the beginning.. Not content with the land they lived on, it wasn’t long before the settlers of Levin coveted the lake as well. Lake Horowhenua belongs to Mua-Upoko who had been forced to watch helplessly as ancestral lands, placed in ordinary property titles, disappeared through scurrilous means. A Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry had ferreted out fraudulent activities, not only by those purporting to represent the tribe but by Central Government itself…” Read more here.
Stories like this one are not rare in our indigenous histories … they are just generally unreported in mainstream media. It is also the typical scenario where the costs of preventing environmental damage are ignored in favour of short term profits. The lake has seen decades of pollution (1950s-70s) in the form of human sewage that completely polluted both the food sources and the livelihood of Muaupoko and caused many to leave. Then there has been the surrounding farming and agricultural runoff. Muaupoko who have endeavoured to keep the lake clean have been vilified and maligned as being not the true owners. The official history in fact, also borne out by today’s article in the Standard, reveals their ownership has been whittled away from them incrementally by convoluted land laws and processes, and “left with “a mere sliver” of the 50,000 acres it once had”, again typical in our histories. The lake’s kaitiaki, Phil Taueki has been involved in an ongoing uphill battle in that respect with locals, Council and Police in his efforts to stop ongoing pollution. He featured recently on Kaitiaki Wars (available on demand) and also in this news item from Marae TV on the history and on the Horowhenua District Council’s stance. Taueki states that the lake, “… a prized taonga” has been “turned into the town’s toilet…”
The lake is now so polluted(video)* it was dubbed in a 2014 Listener article as the ‘Lake of shame’. It is not safe to drink or to swim in. A National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research scientist reported in 2012 that the “water in Lake Horowhenua is so toxic that it could kill a small child.” There were plans this year (2015) for swimmers to commemorate ANZAC by crossing the lake (once the training venue for Lord General Freyberg before WWI) however the cost to clean it up was $2.886 million, clearly not a priority. The non priority status of this issue is reflected in the tight time frame given it by the Crown for this hearing, a fact highlighted by Land Claim lawyer Leo Watson.
Crown Concedes it Failed to Protect Lake Horowhenua from Pollution
By NICHOLAS MCBRIDE “The Crown has conceded it failed to protect Lake Horowhenua from pollution, breached the Treaty of Waitangi on multiple occasions and left the Muaupoko iwi virtually landless.
The Waitangi Tribunal hearing opened at the Horowhenua Events Centre in Levin on Monday, with 22 claims looking at Lake Horowhenua, Hokio Stream and the Horowhenua land block.
“We believe this will be one of the most profound hearings we will have in this district,” Judge Caren Fox said on the opening morning of the tribunal.
In its written submission, released before the hearing, the Crown acknowledged that the Muaupoko iwi had “well-founded grievances”.
It breached the Treaty of Waitangi and this allowed Lake Horowhenua to become polluted…
In the opening submissions for claimants, lawyer Leo Watson, speaking on the Hokio A land claim and Horowhenua Lake claim, said the Crown had perpetrated wrongs against Muaupoko, causing “profound generational impacts”….
the Crown had not acted in good faith, not talked with Muaupoko and had failed to protect the lake.
It had also been left with “a mere sliver” of the 50,000 acres it once had.”