Bethells Herbicides and Taranakis 1080 A National Issue

The community concern over aerial spraying at Te Henga, near Bethells Beach, followed by a 1080 debacle in Taranaki is indicative of a much wider issue; the extra heavy use of chemicals throughout New Zealand and the lack of vision for a pesticide free environment, according to the Soil & Health Association of NZ. Soil & Health is calling for a national ban on aerial spraying to match that of Europe.
“New Zealand is a poisoners paradise with little restriction against broad scale herbicide spraying on agricultural, forestry, amenity and conservation land, or of pelletised animal poisons being aerial dropped over huge areas,” said Soil & Health – Organic NZ spokesperson Steffan Browning.
A public meeting was held last week at Waitakere Primary School to discuss aerial herbicide spraying in the Bethells area. Concerns over potential environmental and human health risks from an intended 23 hectare wetland area of willow being herbicide sprayed by local councils near Bethells beach, had prompted a legal appeal and postponement of the operation. However regardless of that outcome, a neighbouring landowner aerial sprayed vegetation immediately adjacent as a permitted activity, although conditions and notification were unsuitable.
“Bethells is a microcosm of a conflict building in New Zealand in which communities are tiring of pesticides being applied with little regard for their health and with little effective consultation. Spray drift rules in council plans throughout New Zealand are ineffective and there exists a presumption of right to spray among land managers, whether foresters, conservationists, or farmers,” said Mr Browning.
“The Egmont National Park aerial drop of 1080 poison, which also landed on some personnel busy weed spraying, shows that Bethells is just one victim of a country wide conservation regime that is fixated with a chemical killing approach to protecting indigenous biodiversity.”
“At the Bethells Te Henga wetland as in many throughout New Zealand, indigenous conservation is the excuse for widespread spraying of introduced plants such as willows. The native plant conservators ignore the subtleties of toxics on the very ecosystem they strive to preserve, and the neighbouring farmer like so many others seem to think it OK to herbicide drench the very land his customers food comes from.”
“Environment Waikato at the same time is preparing to allow blanket 10 year region-wide non publicly notified consents to dump 1080 into water and onto land. This council knows about available alternatives to 1080, but like most other councils is taking the easy way out despite the wishes of many in its own community.”
“ New Zealand needs vision not poison.”
“Soil & Health is calling for a ban on aerial spraying to match Europe’s, where history has shown that broad brush chemical pest management approaches are in fact not a sustainable solution but cause human and environmental harm.”
“At a time when aerial spraying of chemicals is now banned in Europe, the so called Department of Conservation and its cohorts the Councils throughout New Zealand are spraying on like there is no tomorrow,” said Mr Browning.
“Will they pay as each of their current poisons is shown to cause unacceptable harm? Will they pay as tourists and discerning markets turn off?”
Soil & Health has a vision of an Organic 2020 in which aerial spraying of toxins has no place, and flora and fauna, farmers and the community thrive in a vibrant live environment.

Similar Posts