Last week, we rolled up to the mighty Waikato on the final day of our swimmable rivers tour. Co-Leader James Shaw, Denise Roche MP and I started our day in Horotiu where the primary school has been focussing on the awa and its many issues. The tamariki presented us about their research on the state […]
Gareth Hughes says the public should get a say on Nova Energy’s proposed big new polluting power plant in Waikato
Today I met with locals living rurally near Otorohanga, south Waikato, who will be affected by Nova Energy’s plan to build a new 360MW gas-fired power station. In a bit of a tag team, James Shaw asked questions in Parliament about the same thing.
The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment (PCE) released two reports on freshwater quality and management last Friday. The water quality report shows that dairy conversions are hurting water quality and says that despite great efforts with fencing and planting, large increases in cow numbers are resulting in excess nitrogen and thus pollution in water ways. […]
This week, some Waikato locals took me and intrepid photographer Amanda Rogers on a tour of some lakes and waterways in their region, and up to the massive dairy conversions in the upper catchment of the Waikato River. It was a powerful experience to start my Waikato tour at a local meeting of worried people […]
One in three New Zealanders (Auckland, Hamilton et al) have a very direct interest in the quality of the water coming down the Waikato River because their drinking water is extracted from that catchment. The more polluted that water is, the more expensive and difficult it is to treat it. So how bad is the water at the end of the Waikato river?
As the Herald reports, this weekend three communities in the Waikato – Huntly, Tuakau and Te Awamutu, staged sit-ins at their local train station. They were there to show their support for a passenger rail service between Auckland and Hamilton. You can see some footage of the sit-ins here. The sit-ins had huge support with over […]
Recently Steven Joyce, our Minister of Trucking Transport, claimed it would cost less to fly somebody by helicopter from Hamilton to Auckland than it would to subsidize a commuter rail service between the two cities. Luckily, Hamilton City Councillors quickly responded, pointing out that the actual cost of subsidizing a commuter rail service is hundreds […]
Don’t forget to visit our Good Farm Stories website for Farm Day this Sunday. There are great things going on in rural New Zealand with some farmers proving that we can have both a healthy farming sector and a healthy environment. One of the last things Jeanette Fitzsimons did before leaving Parliament was to put […]
Jeanette noticed something in the story about Winston’s failed ambush that I had missed. Apparently Key’s parting present to the people of Tauranga was the promise of a four lane highway through their town: First stop, the Waikato ($750 million), now Tauranga ($100 million). If Key announced his schedule, towns would at least have a chance to cancel […]