Govt’s water standards designed to confuse

Environment Minister Nick Smith is dreaming if he thinks New Zealanders will swallow his confusing freshwater standards that will, in some cases, allow our rivers to get dirtier, the Green Party said today.

The comments come on the back of news that even Ministry officials can’t explain what the Minister’s standards mean.

“The Government’s approach is not only bad policy, it’s bad for New Zealanders, who have had a gutsful of dirty rivers,” said Green Party Co-leader James Shaw.

“Nick Smith said that New Zealanders would have better information about their rivers, but he’s trying to scam us – even his officials can’t get their heads around the mess he’s made.

“Nick Smith says that water standards are hard to understand because they are complicated. But what’s even harder to understand is why the Government won’t do the right thing, by turning off pollution and supporting farmers to farm in ways that are both sustainable and more profitable.

“Instead, he’s prepared to sacrifice our rivers and hide behind confusing water standards that, in some cases, will allow more pollution than before.

“New Zealanders are tired of the excuses from this government and won’t put up with dirty rivers anymore,” said Mr Shaw. 

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