Ruataniwha dam has already cost ratepayers too much

The Ruataniwha dam project should not proceed, as it has already sucked up $12million of Hawke’s Bay ratepayers’ money and $6m from the taxpayer, and questions still remain about the dam’s viability in the wake of yesterday’s Board of Inquiry decision, the Green Party said today.

HBRIC, the investment arm of the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council, has also earmarked another $80m of ratepayers’ money to pay for construction.

As parts of the Tukituki catchment are already very polluted by high levels of nitrogen entering waterways from farms, the Board’s decision to put a limit of 0.8mg nitrogen per litre of water by 2030 raises questions as to how farmers will be able to afford to stay below this.

“There is a contradiction here in that the catchment is already a mess, and setting low limits for the future – while a positive step – isn’t going to solve the problem.

“The dam will see the area more intensively farmed, which will create more pollution.  

“This project is an unworkable white elephant that ratepayers have had to foot the bill for. The only way to meet nitrogen limits set by the Board of Inquiry is to stop polluting now.

“We’ve opposed the Ruataniwha dam not least because of the detrimental effect more intensive farming will have on the catchment and the cost to the local community, but also because it will not solve the problem of uncertainty over water supply.

“We’ve seen from the way Opuha dam in Canterbury dried up this year that drought is something we are going to have to live with and adapt to as the effects of climate change become more prevalent.

“Changing the way we farm is a step in the right direction towards resiliency, not continuing to plunder the environment unsustainably,” said Ms Delahunty.

 

 

Action

Virtual Events

We have activists across Aotearoa / New Zealand who are working hard to build a brighter future for our kids and grandkids. This page lists upcomin...
Take Action

Action

It's time to pay our essential workers a dignified wage

Our essential workers are the heroes getting us through the COVID-19 crisis, yet for too long they’ve been...
Take Action

Action

Join our call to stop funding fossil fuels!

We need to remove all public money managed by the Government from climate-changing fossil fuel industries.
Take Action

Action

Support our Climate Action Plan for bigger bolder climate action

We agree with all five of the School Strike for Climate's demands. Read more and sign the petition.
Take Action

Action

Show your support to end housing inequality

Our essential workers are the heroes getting us through the COVID-19 crisis, yet for too long they’ve been undervalued and many barely....
Take Action

Latest Environment Announcements

Story

Funding for Kaipara district community waste programmes

Waste reduction and recycling programmes in Kaipara are set to get a boost with Associate Environment Minister Eugenie Sage today announcing a $361...
Read More

Story

Green Party opposes RMA fast-track bill that cut corners on environmental safeguards and public consultation

The Green Party has opposed the COVID-19 Recovery Fast-track Consenting Bill which shortcuts normal consenting processes under the Resource Managem...
Read More

Story

New protection for dolphins and support for changes to fishing methods

Extensive new protections are being put in place as part of an updated plan to look after New Zealand’s native Hector’s and Māui dolphins, announce...
Read More

Story

Strongest ever water reforms mean swimmable rivers within a generation

The Green Party says major freshwater reforms announced today provide the strongest ever protections of our waterways, to help ensure the next gene...
Read More

Story

Budget 2020: Huge investment in green nature based jobs jump starts sustainable COVID recovery

The Green Party says the $1.1 billion environmental investment in this year’s budget to create thousands of green jobs will help jump start a susta...
Read More

Story

Reducing waste and creating jobs - Minister announces 2020 Waste Minimisation Fund applications open, focus on COVID-19 recovery

Creating jobs in the vital waste reduction sector is the focus of the latest application round for the Waste Minimisation Fund, which opens today.
Read More