Sunday, October 28, 2012

Labour/ Greens attack National's failure to produce enviro report...

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Labour and Greens slam axing of report

Labour and the Greens say the government's axing of a five-yearly State of the Environment report is the result of a "head in the sand" attitude.


Labour and the Greens have slammed the government's axing of a five-yearly environment report card, saying it's a ploy to keep the public in the dark and "a major step backwards".
In response to a written question from Green MP Eugenie Sage, Environment Minister Amy Adams said the Ministry for the Environment would not produce the State of the Environment report that was due this year.
Mrs Adams said the ministry was instead measuring 22 core environmental indicators - the same indicators used in the 2007 State of the Environment report - and releasing the information when it was available.
She said that means the data is reported in "a timely, efficient manner and at a frequency relevant for the indicator, rather than arbitrarily every five years".
Her response failed to appease Labour or the Greens.
Ms Sage said the government "does not want people to know how it has undermined the environment with its pro-irrigation, anti-climate, and pro-mining policies".
"People who want to know what is going on will have to trawl through individual report cards and hope to find the most up-to-date accurate information instead of being able to access a single comprehensive document," Ms Sage said.
Labour's environment spokesman Grant Robertson said the government was extending its "ostrich economics" approach to the environment.
"New Zealand can't afford this head in the sand attitude from National," he said.
"Ad hoc and incomplete report cards will not suffice."
Ms Sage said the new report cards don't cover all of New Zealand.
"There is no freshwater data from regions such as West Coast, Tasman, Auckland in the recent [Ministry for the Environment] report cards on recreational water quality."
In a statement to NZ Newswire, Mrs Adams hit back at the criticism, saying "waiting five years to measure the state of our environment might be good enough for the Green Party but not this government".

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