Emergency Team Argue While Waituna Dies

The Editor
The Southland Times

Dear Sir
For those who care about New Zealand’s most significant and internationally recognized wetland there is a huge level of frustration at the apparent impasse between local farmers and Environment Southland and most especially the inaction from central government. It appears that the only national crisis that deserves the full attention of our government is a waterfront party in Auckland. While there is the potential for international embarrassment around not being able to lay on a decent booze up, surely there should be greater embarrassment around letting one of our most significant environments fester and die. There is also no logic in spending $11.6 million for an attempt at resuscitating the already dead Lake Ellesmere when the Waituna Lagoon is still living.

The science is irrefutable and we have many practical solutions such as those suggested by Ciaran Keogh (Southland Times 22/9/11). When Fonterra’s profits are sky rocketing and the government has proven its ability to act in a crisis, funding or farmer compensation should not be an issue. The situation is like watching someone dying on the ground while the emergency team are standing around trying to establish blame for the accident and who should be the first to start resuscitation. The hand wringing and pointing fingers need to stop, let's just save the Waituna before it’s too late!

Yours sincerely...


robertguyton said…
Good to-the-point letter Dave. I especially like your use of the word 'apparent' - there is genuine progress being made between ES and the Waituna catchment farmers. The other parties you mention have shown little sign of action, as you describe. Bryce Johnson describes their 'stonewalling' pretty well in his Opinion piece.

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