This week I want to write about chemical dumps.
Recently we had Mr Bert Judd, a member of the Waitarere Enviromental Care Association and a member of that organisations monitoring committee, use public speaking rights at May the 12th Environment Committee meeting, to inform Councillors of a major problem with the Awapuni Land Fill, as explained previously. It has been used as a chemical dump. It appears that in 1994 a resource consent, or should I say discharge permits 3965 and 3967 were issued to the Palmerston North City Council to develop a land fill at Awapuni, off Maxwells Line, close to the banks of the Mangaone Stream and the Manawatu River. These were issued to discharge contaminants ( refuse and recirculated leachate to ground).
Amongst other conditions imposed.
No performance bond was stipulated. A clay liner was required, areas bunded to contain leachate and storm water on site . No leachate is to permeate the liner so as to adversly effect the ground or surface water, or adjoining land.
A hazardous waste manifest shall be completed, and secure storage shall be provided. Roofed, banded and securable. An emergency plan developed.
The permit was signed off by one J J White. Chairperson. I presume on behalf of the Regional Council of the time and a charge of $2182.38c was imposed.
It would seem that the conditions, especially those with regard to the storage and disposal of chemicals has not been adhered to. And indeed now as in recent years,are being reticulated through the Palmerston North City Council Public Sewage and Waste Water Out Fall , through the Rock Structure below the Ultraviolet Unit, and into the Manawatu River. A Major breach of resource consent number 3967.
The PNCC , it was stated, has admitted that a secure storage capsule at the Land Fill site itself has been ruptured and presumably the leachate has been finding its way into the Mangaone Stream.
It appears some pretty horrible chemicals have been leaching either by accident or design out of these facilities, consisting of Halogenated Carbons, Alkyl Benzenes, Organochlorine Pesticides, including “Agent Orange”, Polychlorinated Biphenyls, Organophospherous Pesticides, and Halophenols. Forty chemicals at least.
Well what effect has all this been having on water quality and aquatic biodiversity in the Manawatu River. It has been awhile now since Mr Judd made his assertions and presented his evidence to Horizons Regional Council and I must say no media attention has been noted . If Horizons are investigating they are keeping it pretty quiet, although PNCC Awapuni Land Fill features in the non compliance report, 12th May Environment Committee Meeting. But not for this.
If this was a farming operation all hell would have broken out. Mr Judd was rightly appalled at PNCC staff ‘s denial of the problem and it certainly looks to me like somebody is creating science, and you guessed it whose getting the blame? The Farming Industry.
This is not the only site (s) I am aware of, with one in my own district, Symonds Road Taumarunui. Heavens forbid the old Horizons Regional Council depot, with a number of chemicals being disposed of in offal holes including in a Wet Land. I should also mention the Taumarunui Gun Club Echolands site, with the same issue by the same organisation. Although there was a public out cry after media exposure, and promises to rectify by the Regional Council. There is doubt this has happened.
So With Regional Councils track record, I am not holding my breath that PNCC is going to be taken to task. Mr Judd is demanding that there needs to be a major investigation by the Cawthorn Institute, plus Massey University Ecologists, independent of PNCC. May I suggest Horizons as well. Here I have detailed two examples of blatent abuse of authority at two sites. How many other sites are there ? It seems to me an independent authority needs to be commissioned to investigate, including testing, of all the regions Landfills, known sites of Hazardous substances and those of ancedotal evidence.
Whilst we are on the subject of denial and subdefuge, lets look at Wet Land Types. I am looking at a report written by Peter Johnson and Philippe Gerbeaux titled Wet Land Types in New Zealand available from the Ministry for the Environment.
Well blow me down . Algyfield. It is a wetland type found in streams of open grassy country at a time of low summer flows with warm water temperatures encouraging rampant growth. It plays a important role in the functioning of our aquatic biodiversity. It is that long slimy green growth called a pollutant of water ways bought about by the use of Land. My god what the hell is going on in NZ. I for one, am sick and tired of designer science and the subjective interpretation of facts to achieve out comes desired by political and environmental extremists . The fact that these people are focused so intently on discrediting Agriculture should be of concern to “All” NZers.
Just how bad is Agricultures effect on the Environment and after detailing these and other examples in the preceeding posts one has to question any and all science, because it is obvious that the real problems are not the use or misuse of Land, but the use and misuse of our Urban Facilities, Waste Water and Land Fills. Include the effects on the Environment of all those people living in one place , the vehicles and air bourn pollutants. Not to mention the horrendous destruction/modification of the original Environment to accommadate People. When extremists have succeeded in the eradication of that environmental pest “Farmers” , what are our Urban Degraders of the Environment to eat? Who is going to provide the financial resources they have become accustomed to using to provide for themselves and accumulating to denote wealth. And please do not say Carbon. If regulators have to resort to regulation to create, you should all be aware it is unsustainable, and unlikely to provide for our future Health, Wealth , Social and Cultural needs, both now and into the future.
The up and coming Local Govt elections is the time when mainstream NZers must get their act together and make sure non performers and extremists are rooted out of Local Govt. Our future is in mainstream NZers hands and we need to stand up and demand Economic Growth and an end to negative designer type policies and politics.