Submission on Waste Management and Minimisation Plan

Thank you for the booklet which outlines NCC & HDC plans for diverting waste from the Omarunui Landfill. I have not read the full proposal.

Section 43 of the Waste Minimisation Act (WMA) states that a Waste Management and Minimisation Plan (WMMP) plan must provide for methods for achieving effective and efficient waste management and minimisation.

Whilst the recommendations discuss, and offer different options for waste management it is completely deficient of any discussion around waste minimisation. Therefore it is my belief that the draft WMMP is in breach of the WMA. Potentially the proposed WMMP could therefore be subject to judicial review because of this deficiency. This is an area which requires urgent attention.

Waste Management Proposals

Rubbish

I appreciate what you are attempting to achieve by moving residents onto wheelie bins. However it seems that there has been an attempt to make a one size fits all solution. For example it would be a remarkable achievement for a single person household to fill an 80ltr bin weekly.

Whilst I acknowledge that we may be seen as an exceptional case I know my family of 4 worked hard at reducing that amount of waste that went to landfill and averaged 30ltr a week. We undertook annual audits of what was going into the landfill bag (mostly food packaging) and educated our children about reuse, reduce, recycle and refuse. Indeed local shopkeepers have become well aware of my aversion to plastic bags.

See below for further discussion under organic waste.

Support neither option.

Recommendations

1/ Offer a choice of smaller bin sizes to residents.

2/ Make an effort to have single use plastics phased out in NCC & HDC jurisdictions. This will require a concerted effort of councils working with retailers to do this, but it is achievable. Be imaginative and bold. Lobby central government for legislation to assist you banning single use plastics. Yep. The old stick and carrot approach. We need to refuse to imagine that the status-quo is acceptable.

3/ Continue educating the public – especially though programmes designed for kids – about how to reduce household rubbish.

Recycling

 

Totally support your suggestion of standardised crates for health and safety reasons. My preference would be for weekly collection, option A

Recommendations

1/ There is a fair amount of rumour going about Napier that a significant portion of recycling is dumped straight to landfill. I have no idea about the validity or otherwise of these rumours but an education programme would be useful.

2/ Have a bi-annual inorganic collection for large house hold items such as whiteware and electronics. Lobby central government for legislation to place a levy on the purchase of such items to fund this initiative. You could also encourage retailers to accept the return of discarded items as part of the purchase process.

Organic Waste

I have some concerns about your suggestion to have a seperate organic collection but can appreciate the logic behind it. It begs the question that if 80% of material that could have been composted or put into to recycling is organic waste why are you recommending wheelie bins that are of comparable volume to that which is already allowed? Surely if you are successful with getting organic waste separated the volume of the wheelie bins could be reduced by a comparable amount.

Our household currently has zero organic waste going to landfill as we compost everything. Under this proposal we would be punished for doing the right thing. But I also appreciate that with smaller sections sizes people have less space for a compost bin/worm farm.

This is an challenge for which there are no easy solutions. As someone who has zero organic waste going to landfill the question is would I be prepared to pay additional rates for the benefit of the community as a whole?

We need to somehow differentiate between the different types of households which is why I support option C. At the same time I appreciate that without a seperate organic collection people will likely still put their organic waste into the general rubbish – which does not solve your challenge of reducing the amount of waste going to landfill.

Recommendations

I acknowledge that I have no answers here. No doubt you are in the same boat. Hence option C.

Rural

I am very supportive of the rural recycling stations. Those communities would know best where they should be. We also need to maintain regular collections of unused chemicals and the like.

Education

Rubbish is a really interesting and important topic. Like most things if we are truely going to have a community the understands the concept of reuse, reduce, recycle and refuse more education programmes are necessary. Especially at school level. I would be very supportive of increasing funding for education programmes. We did it for smoking. We did it for drink driving. We can do it for rubbish.

Summary

Rubbish reduction has many flow on environmental, social, and economic benefits. It is more than just what’s going to the landfill. That’s why I found the consultation pamphlet so underwhelming and unimaginative. To reduce the amount of rubbish going to landfill we need to get society as a whole to stop producing so much of it. Otherwise we are simply treating the symptom and not finding a cure for the cause.

I am very aware of the lack of initiative shown by central government in the past but I think you will find that the current government has a different view on the matter. Waste reduction is after all one of the 20 initiatives negotiated by the Green Party with their coalition partners. I am not sure if it is simply because an announcement has yet to be made from Wellington but I think the draft WMMP does not reflect expected changes in focus.

I would like to speak to my submission.

My submission is made as a private individual and not in my role as Hawke’s Bay Regional Councillor.

Section 43 of the WMA states that a WMMP must provide for:

(a) objectives and policies for achieving effective and efficient waste management and minimisation within the territorial authority’s district

(b) methods for achieving effective and efficient waste management and minimisation within the territorial authority’s district, including –

(i) collection, recovery, recycling, treatment, and disposal services for the district to meet its current and future waste management and minimisation needs (whether provided by the territorial authority or otherwise); and

(ii) any waste management and minimisation facilities provided, or to be provided, by the territorial authority; and

(iii) any waste management and minimisation activities, including any educational or public awareness activities, provided, or to be provided, by the territorial authority


Paul Bailey
37A Te Awa Avenue, NAPIER

Mob: 0210559690

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Wetlands part of solution of nutrients in waterways

In some ways I admire the tenacity of Roger Alexander in spending 30 years of his life creating a lake at Puketapu (Puketapu Lake worth 30 year wait 20/2/18). However I am at a loss for words to read that he describes, and dismisses the original wetlands as merely a swamp. I get that the thinking of 30 years ago was not as enlightened as it is today so I forgive Mr Alexander for starting down the path that he chose.

In saying that it is unfortunate that he does not appear to show any remorse for the destruction of such an important area of bio-diversity. Wetlands are not only major areas of natural habitat and bio-diversity, they also act as the kidneys of our waterways filtering out much of the sediment, and many of the nutrients which have proved to be so destructive to our environment.

What Mr Alexander has done would not be acceptable today. At Hawke’s Bay Regional Council we face huge challenges with sediment and nutrients entering our waterways and marine costal environment. Wetlands are part of the solution to that challenge and thankfully we are looking at restoring our wetlands, not destroying them. One only has to look at the success of the Pakipaki wetlands to see what should be applauded and the direction we need to take.

Published 22 February

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The Mayor’s response 27/2/18

 

If the Napier mayor considers my recent letter decrying the use of the term swamp in describing wetlands as ‘ill-informed’ then we have some have some real challenges in front of us (Auction and Fair wonderful 27/2/18). One has to wonder if it is this sort of thinking that has lead us down the path of chlorinated water and raw sewerage being dumped into the Ahurihi Estuary when, during the amalgamation debate, we were assured that Napier’s infrastructure maintenance was up to date and all tickty boo.

The mayor needs to re-read my letter. In no way did I denigrate Lake Puketapu. I also made it very clear that I forgave Mr Alexander for starting down the path he chose. My frustration was in his referring to what was a wetland as simply a swamp. I remain unapologetic for this.

Like many issues that have confronted us as a society if we wish to change culture, then we need to change the thinking. I liken this to how society has changed it’s views on smoking, seatbelts, drinking driving, and speeding. We need to stop thinking of wetlands as swamps in need of ‘development’. It is reassuring that the vast majority of landowners have already come to this realisation but given that about 98% of the wetlands in Hawke’s Bay have been lost already we all need to get on board. If changing this mentality means that we need to highlight instances when it happens then so be it. As far as I’m concerned it’s called leadership. We simply can not continue to stick our heads in the sand and say everything is all right. What remains of our wetlands are far too important to do otherwise.

Submitted 27/2/18

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Nats need to change first – Insite Magazine

A couple of weeks back I argued that Bill English had to go because I couldn’t see him bring about the necessary change to the National Party that would ever allow the Greens to buddy up with them. That wasn’t saying that Bill’s a bad bloke. I don’t think he his. I think he’s a bit of an old fashioned compassionate conservative myself.

So in some respects I was sad to hear of his resignation. Whatever your political leanings it’s hard to disagree that New Zealand came out of the GFC in a fairly robust position economically. After all we are not a complete basket case. However it would be hard to argue that environmentally and socially we are in a better place though, and that has been a legacy of Bill’s handling of the books.

It seems that decisions made during the GFC to protect the economy overlooked the effect those decisions would have on the people and the environment. And that’s where the Nats and the Greens have major differences of opinion. And that’s why, unless the Nats undertake some serious soul searching about where their priorities lie, I doubt the two would ever be able to work together in coalition.

But we should never say never. That would be daft and cutting off our noses to spite our faces. There will always be areas of common interest we could work on. Given the make up of this current parliament it will be interesting to see if any such issues arise where that can happen. Perhaps the Kermadec Ocean Sanctuary is one such issue. It would be fascinating to see what Winston would do if the Greens pulled that one out the hat.

In reality though I believe that the Nats have to prove themselves first before the Greens would be willing to put the coalition at risk, or even risk going into government with them. But here’s a start. Maybe it’s time every party in parliament took seriously Chlöe Swarbrick‘s call to do politics differently. I have have to wonder if the younger generations call for more co-operation rather than confrontation is no bad thing. Something all partys need to work on of course, but the Nats need to do first. After all, they’re the ones with no mates.

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