Tag Archives: Environmental protection

Regional council builds Palace, refuses help to dredge Otago boat harbour

The ironies are Most Apparent.

The Otago Regional Council contributed $30m to the stadium roof (an activity beyond its local authority mandate), yet the council has no intention of helping the Otago Yacht Club to maintain the city’s marina, the Otago Boat Harbour.

[click to enlarge]
DCC Webmaps – Otago Boat Harbour at Mouth of Leith JanFeb 2013

Otago Yacht Club’s origin dates back to 1892, making it one of the oldest yacht clubs in Otago. The club caters for a range of sailing interests from keelboats to trailer yachts and centreboarders. The club also operates keeler haul-out facilities and welcomes visiting boats. The club manages a full events programme during summer, including harbour, coastal and ocean races. On Sunday mornings in the season the club runs ‘learn to sail’ and ‘learn to race’ programmes which cater for all ages. The clubhouse is a popular venue for private functions and for local organisations to hold meetings and events. Within walking distance of the city centre, the clubhouse offers showers, laundry facilities, email connections etc. The resident caretaker-manager will usually manage to accommodate requests for berthage for boats up to 50 feet. The alongside mooring facilities consist of several large punts inside a walled boat harbour. Due to silting, access to the boat harbour has only been tenable approximately two hours either side of high tide for boats with 2m draft. The Otago boat harbour was last dredged in 1995.
Source: otagoyachtclub.org.nz

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### ODT Online Thu, 20 Apr 2017
Club gets go-ahead to dredge boat harbour
By David Loughrey
The Otago Boat Harbour is about to get its first dredging in more than 20 years, after the facility reached such a state rescue vessels could not leave the harbour at low tide. The work, expected to start soon, has been described as a major achievement by the Otago Yacht Club, which leases the boat harbour. Club vice-commodore Blair McNab said the cost of the project – more than $300,000 – was being paid for from grants and club membership fees. […] The club recently received resource consent from the Dunedin City Council for the work. The consent allowed the club to deposit dredged sediment and soil on land in Magnet St, behind the club, for drying. Mr McNab said once the dredged material had been dried, which took about two weeks, it would be taken to the nearby Logan Point quarry. The consent said once the work was completed, about 100cu m would remain on the grass area at Magnet St to form a barrier around its perimeter, and provide better drainage. The consent decision said the boat harbour was in such a state that at low tide, craft used for harbour rescues could not get out. […] The club had hoped the Otago Regional Council might help with the cost of the dredging, as alterations to the Water of Leith meant more spoil was coming from the nearby mouth of the stream. Mr McNab said it appeared the council was not going to help.
Read more

The Star April 2014 via Otago Yacht Club. Also at ODT Online 22.4.14

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The Otago Regional Council’s “special consultation” over its Dunedin headquarters is flawed, writes former councillor Gerrard Eckhoff.

### ODT Online Tue, 18 Apr 2017
Review needed in lieu of proper consultation
By Gerrard Eckhoff
The Otago Regional Council’s annual plan is now open for public consultation. Implicit in the word consultation is the opening of a meaningful dialogue with the public. It would be entirely disingenuous for any local authority to enter into discussion on their annual plan by merely informing the public of council intent without showing a willingness to accept “the wisdom of crowds”.
….This year’s ORC annual plan contains four lines on “Dunedin building review” in its feedback document which could easily be missed at first reading. To its credit, the council has finally accepted its statutory obligation for “special consultation” on this $30million major project.
….The last time the council ventured forth on a new building project without any prior special consultation, it cost the ratepayers upwards of $3million for the concept design and drawings alone. The cost of that proposal was well over $30million and it was never built. It is, therefore, hard to reconcile how the new building/s is going to be around the projected $20million mark, unless building costs have halved in Dunedin from eight years or so ago. The potential cost of a new car park building must also be factored in, so the ratepayers could soon be the lucky owners of two new buildings, as well as a difficult-to-sell ORC headquarters building in Stafford St.
Read more

DCC Webmap – Dowling St carpark JanFeb 2013, ORC office site starred

Related Posts and Comments:
9.1.17 ORC $wimming in it —SHOULD afford more Otago environmental…
15.8.16 ORC : Official complaints show integrity
22.6.16 ORC New HQ : Reminder, fiduciary duty and core responsibilities
● 9.6.16 ORC empire building again : Consultants give questionable options…
11.8.12 ODT editorial (spot on!) — ORC temporary headquarters
26.6.09 ORC headquarters [incl news items to present day]

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

*Images: Otago Yacht Club except where stated otherwise.

14 Comments

Filed under Business, DCC, Democracy, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Finance, Geography, Heritage, Infrastructure, Media, Name, New Zealand, ORC, People, Perversion, POL, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Resource management, Site, Sport, Tourism, Town planning, Transportation, Travesty, Urban design, What stadium

No protection for Dunedin’s DARK Skies —Otago Peninsula subdivision decision #GrievouslySucks

Commissioner Colin Weatherall said the amended application was expected to have fewer adverse effects on the environment. He treated “with caution” some of the evidence received by submitters opposing the consent.
ODT: Peninsula subdivision approved (7.4.17)

Opponents of a plan to allow residential development on land designated an outstanding natural landscape area on the Otago Peninsula have labelled the decision “terrible” and “a travesty”.
ODT: Project by inlets ‘travesty’ (8.4.17)

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Dunedin City Council
78 Cape Saunders Road, Portobello, Dunedin (LUC-2006-370881/B)
Letter of decision (PDF, 3.3 MB) 57 pages all inclusive

More about the application at this DCC webpage.

Whatiffers, consider lending support to any organised submitters (opposing the decision on points of law) who decide to take this to Environment Court.

Meanwhile At Twitter:

Related Post and Comments:
8.3.17 Ancestral landscape, natural heritage, dark skies & the district plan #respect ● [more Dunedin dark sky images from the Peninsula]

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

11 Comments

Filed under Business, Construction, DCC, Democracy, District Plan, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Geography, Heritage, Housing, Infrastructure, Media, Name, New Zealand, NZPI, OAG, Ombudsman, People, Perversion, Pics, Politics, Project management, Property, Proposed 2GP, Public interest, Resource management, Site, Technology, Tourism, Town planning, Travesty, What stadium

Ancestral landscape, natural heritage, dark skies & the district plan #respect

[penguin.au.com]

Peninsula: Exploring the Otago Peninsula | Paul Sorrell
Rich in recreational opportunities and with a strong sense of culture and community, the peninsula is a place like no other. Author Paul Sorrell and photographer Graham Warman discover the sweeping landscapes, unique mix of wildlife and engaging local personalities found on this special slice of New Zealand’s southern coast…. Penguin promotion

### ODT Online Sat, 7 Sep 2013
People and place portrayed
By Helen Speirs – ODT books editor
PENINSULA: Exploring the Otago Peninsula by Paul Sorrell and Graham Warman (Penguin)
From its volcanic formation, to early Maori settlement and the first European visitors, the book traces the influences of humans on the land, examining fishing and farming practices and architectural landmarks including the Mason and Wales “White House”, Larnach Castle, Fletcher House, Otakou marae, Portobello Aquarium and Marine Studies Centre, and the Armstrong Disappearing Gun. […] The rich diversity of the “wildlife capital of New Zealand” is a highlight, with information about the area’s jewelled gecko, its multitude of birdlife – including Taiaroa Head’s northern royal albatross, New Zealand sea lions and yellow-eyed penguins. […] The book’s design and layout is simple and reader-friendly, the writing informative and accessible, and the photography stunning – the sweeping vistas of the peninsula land and seascapes, with the light playing on the water and shadows in the folds of the land are particularly evocative.
Read more

[teara.govt.nz]

Otago Peninsula by Colin McCahon [tepapa.govt.nz]

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P A P A N U I ● I N L E T ● W A K A ● F I N D

### ODT Online Tue, 14 Oct 2014
Historic waka find excites as peninsula gives up secret
By Hamish McNeilly
The discovery of a historic waka unearthed from Papanui Inlet is a “significant find”, a local kaumatua says. A waka – believed to be a fishing waka (waka hi ika) – measuring 6.17m was excavated from the edge of the inlet over the weekend, and is now in storage. Otakou runanga kaumatua Edward Ellison said the “exciting” discovery “sheds new light [on] the historical use and occupation of the Papanui Inlet and surrounds”. It was likely the vessel dated from the Ngati Mamoe occupation of that part of the Otago Peninsula, before “Ngai Tahu came down and pushed some of them further south”.
Read more

### ODT Online Thu, 16 Oct 2014
‘I knew it was something significant’
By John Lewis
If it were not for changing tidal flows, the fishing waka unearthed from Papanui Inlet on Otago Peninsula at the weekend might never have been discovered, Department of Conservation historic technical adviser Shar Briden said. The 6.17m waka was under 1.6m of sand and was discovered by chance in August by Ms Briden. She said the channel flow had changed, with the estuary water now cutting over the top of the waka. […] The waka was excavated and refloated using whale pontoons at the weekend, and moved across the estuary at high tide to where it could be retrieved. The waka is believed to be the only one found in Otago, and has archaeologists around the country buzzing.
Read more

### ODT Online Sun, 28 Dec 2014
Waka remnants give glimpse into past
By Shawn McAvinue
A waka submerged in a locked wooden tank at the Otakou marae in Dunedin continues to reveal the past to archaeologists. Te Runanga o Otakou manager Rachel Wesley said the fishing waka, unearthed from Papanui inlet on Otago Peninsula in October, was on the marae and submerged in fresh water in a locked wooden tank. […] The waka was moved to the marae in early December […] Samples of the waka had been sent to Auckland and Dunedin to determine its age. The waka conservation work would take more than two years […] Department of Conservation historic technical adviser Shar Briden said other wooden artefacts were found before the waka was discovered and they revealed some more about it.
Read more

### ODT Online Fri, 6 Feb 2015
Waka believed from the 1500s
By Hamish McNeilly
The historic waka unearthed from Papanui Inlet was used in the 1500s, it has been revealed. Dilys John, of Auckland University’s anthropology department, has dated the worked waka and the prepared fibres from inside the hull at being between 440 and 463 years old. Otakou runanga elder Edward Ellison said the waka remained in water at the marae, and the salt would slowly be removed out of the timber over the next two years. The waka would be preserved and then possibly be put on display […] It was believed the waka was used by Waitaha – the first occupants of the site – or Ngati Mamoe […] “The mere thought that the hands that made and used the hand-woven fibres belonged to ancestors who lived at Papanui Inlet at least 20 generations ago is quite breathtaking.” Dating the waka helped with comparisons with other sites around New Zealand and confirmed “the specialness of the Papanui Inlet”.
Read more

█ Anyone who found an object should leave the item in situ and report the find to the Department of Conservation. (ODT)

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D A R K ● S K I E S ● O T A G O ● P E N I N S U L A

### ODT Online Wed, 15 Apr 2015
Seeking dark sky city status
By Vaughan Elder
The Dunedin City Council is to investigate ways of limiting light pollution, after councillors were told Dunedin could become the world’s largest “dark sky city”. Otago Museum director Ian Griffin spoke about the issue of light pollution at yesterday’s planning and regulatory committee meeting when he discussed the museum’s planetarium development, which is to open later this year. “We see the planetarium as not just a brilliant educational tool [but also] potentially an anchor for a new strand of tourism in this city.” There was a massive potential for growth in night sky tourism in the city and the council could support that by acting to limit light pollution in areas such as Otago Peninsula, where viewing conditions were best, Dr Griffin said.
Read more

Downloads:
Evidence from Dr Ian Griffin 1.3.17
Evidence from Dr Ian Griffin Graphic supplement
Dr Ian Griffin Submitter Legal Counsel’s tabled submission 8.3.17

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P R O B L E M ● C H I L D R E N

### ODT Online Fri, 10 Apr 2015
Quarry operator faces hearing over breach
By Chris Morris
An Otago Peninsula quarry operator found to be digging beyond his boundary faces a public hearing to determine the future shape of the operation. The Papanui Inlet quarry operation, headed by Peninsula resident Steve Clearwater, was found to be in breach of its existing consent following an inspection by council staff early last year.
Read more

### ODT Online Fri, 31 Jul 2015
May need new consent, quarry hearing told
By John Gibb
A “catch-22” legal problem involving a quarry on Otago Peninsula means all parties, including the applicant and many submitters, may have been wasting their time attending a consent hearing. […] The hearing involves a quarry, which had operated as a smaller farm quarry before a consent allowed it to expand in 2007. Steve Clearwater Contracting, headed by peninsula resident Steve Clearwater, has been accused by council staff of not complying with rules designed to restrict his quarry’s operation. […] Council officials say the quarry was found to be operating beyond its boundary early last year, by extracting rock from further up Geary’s Hill than was permitted. The applicant, Peninsula Holdings Trust, is seeking a variation on its existing consent, to legalise what has been done, but it is also seeking to expand its footprint for future operations. The application has prompted 40 submissions, including 32 from neighbours, many opposing it.
Read more

### ODT Online Sat, 1 Aug 2015
Quarry hearing adjourned
By John Gibb
Independant commissioner Andrew Henderson has adjourned a Dunedin consent hearing to consider legal issues linked to a quarry overlooking Papanui Inlet in a “treasured ancestral landscape”. Mr Henderson, of Christchurch, said yesterday he would consider legal issues over how to proceed with an application, on behalf of the quarry operator, to vary conditions in an earlier 2007 consent, involving the quarry on Otago Peninsula.
Read more

Neighbours are fighting plans to expand a quarry overlooking Papanui Inlet, after it was found to be in breach of 10 resource consent conditions. (ODT)

### ODT Online Fri, 28 Aug 2015
Fears for Otago Peninsula hill
By Chris Morris
A quarry operator accused of flouting rules on Otago Peninsula could seek to remove a hill overlooking Papanui Inlet, neighbours fear. Steve Clearwater Contracting, headed by peninsula resident Steve Clearwater, has been accused by Dunedin City Council staff of showing “contempt” for rules designed to restrict his quarry’s operation. […] “Geary’s Hill, at the head of Papanui Inlet, is an integral part of a wider wahi tupuna [ancestral landscape]” […] The Otakou runanga was concerned about the “incremental carving away at the basic elements of this ancestral landscape leading to greater and irreversible changes”.
Read more

### ODT Online Wed, 23 Sep 2015
Quarry expansion plans scuttled
By Craig Borley
Controversial expansion plans for an Otago Peninsula quarry have been declined by an independent commissioner, but quarrying will continue on the site. The Geary’s Hill quarry, overlooking Papanui Inlet, was last year found to have breached many of its 2007 resource consent conditions. It had extended further up and across Geary’s Hill than consented, while a paddock consented to receive fill to a depth of 1m had since received considerably more than that. Dunedin City Council staff concluded it was in breach of at least 10 consent conditions, while compliance with another five was questionable. Quarry operator Steve Clearwater Contracting, headed by peninsula resident Steve Clearwater, had been forced to seek a variation on its existing consent to legalise what it had done, while also seeking to expand its footprint for future operations. Neighbours feared the variation, if accepted, could eventually lead to the complete removal of the hill. But that variation was declined last week and was now subject to a 15-working-day appeal period. […] The council had accepted it had been deficient in monitoring the 2007 consent.
Read more

### ODT Online Mon, 6 Feb 2017
Subdivision bid opposed
By David Loughrey
A plan to subdivide 260ha of rural Otago Peninsula land in an outstanding natural landscape area has run into serious opposition, as a resource consent bid heads for a March hearing. Groups from Forest and Bird to Save the Otago Peninsula (Stop), and individuals from peninsula tourism and accommodation businesses, as well as astronomers and archaeologists, have lined up to oppose the project. Land owner Steven Clearwater described opposition from property owners in the area as “nimbyism”. He said the farm on which the subdivision was planned had been dotted with farmhouses a century ago, and he wanted to protect his right to build there again. The project is the work of the Peninsula Holdings Trust, made up of property owners Steven and Jacqueline Clearwater and Brian Hailes. The trust has applied to the Dunedin City Council to subdivide the rural zoned land at 78 Cape Saunders Rd. The land has a capital value of almost $1.9million.
Read more

“Allowing property owners to subdivide small parcels for residential use scattered around a large farm property is not in accordance with the expectations of either the district plan or proposed plan.” –Lianne Darby

### ODT Online Mon, 13 Feb 2017
City planner opposes subdivision
By Margot Taylor
An application to subdivide 260ha of Otago Peninsula land in an outstanding natural landscape has hit another hurdle with a planner’s report recommending the application be declined. Dunedin City Council planner Lianne Darby recommended the council decline the bid to subdivide a property at 78 Cape Saunders Rd, citing negative effects on the environment and the potential  “undesirable” precedents it could set for rural zoning if approved. […] If such a proposal  were approved, there could be a “major change” to the appearance and character of the land, she found. The subdivision, on an isthmus of land between Hoopers Inlet and Papanui Inlet and the northern slopes of Mt Charles, was also inconsistent with aspects of the district plan relating to sustainability, land fragmentation, rural productive worth, roading and landscape, the report found. She did not believe the proposal, which would create 10 new sites, on which consent was sought for residential activity on eight, was a sustainable use of the city’s physical and natural resources. The proposed sites would be between 2ha and 194ha.
Read more

Downloads:
DCC Planner’s Report Pages 1-44
DCC Planner’s Report Pages 45-88

### ODT Online Wed, 8 Mar 2017
Papanui developer reduces sites plan
By David Loughrey
The developer of a subdivision on an Otago Peninsula isthmus has halved the number of houses planned for the site, surprising opponents ready to argue against the plan. Peninsula Holdings Trust came to a resource consent hearing in Dunedin yesterday with a proposal that reduced the number of houses in the outstanding natural landscape area from eight to four. Landowner Steven Clearwater told the hearing he had recently signed a conditional sale agreement for some of the land involved to nearby farmer. Plans for a covenanted area of wetland and a public walking track were withdrawn, after the buyer of the land made it “very clear” they were not to be offered. The change led hearing commissioner Colin Weatherall to adjourn the meeting after the trust made its submissions, allowing opponents time overnight to modify theirs.
Read more

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S U B D I V I S I O N ● A P P L I C A T I O N

Dunedin City Council
Non complying activity – 78 Cape Saunders Road – SUB-2016-58 & LUC-2016-336

Closed: 09/12/2016

Notification of Application for a Resource Consent – Under Section 93(2) of the Resource Management Act 1991.
The Dunedin City Council has received and notified the following application for Resource Consent:

Application description
Council has received an application to subdivide the above nine titles of 78 Cape Saunders Road into eleven lots and a balance parcel. The subdivision will create ten new sites of 2.0ha to 194ha. Eight of the new sites will be smaller than 15.0ha and are therefore considered to be undersized.
Land use consent is sought for new residential activity within proposed Landscape Building Platforms on Lots 1 to 2, 4 to 6, and 8 to 10. Lot 3 (38ha) has an existing quarry operation with an established dwelling. The amalgamated site of Lot 7 and 12 (194ha) will be a farming block with no dwelling, and will be subject to a covenant restricting all residential development of this site. The balance land of Part Lot 54 Papanui Maori Reserve Blk (residue CFR OT205/103) will be amalgamated with Lot 10.
The quarry operation will need to be reauthorised as it will be contained within a smaller site. It will be a discretionary (unrestricted) activity pursuant to Rule 6.5.6(v).
The subject sites are zoned Rural in the Dunedin City District Plan, and are within the Peninsula Coast Outstanding Landscape Area (Visually Recessive and Visually Prominent Areas). The general area is identified as being subject to land stability risks, and parts of the subject sites are potentially at risk to liquefaction.
Subdivision of a Rural-zoned site into lots smaller than 15.0ha is a non-complying activity pursuant to Rule 18.5.2 of the Dunedin City District Plan. The construction of buildings (dwellings) within a Landscape Building Platform is considered to be a controlled activity pursuant to Rule 14.6.1(a)(i). The proposed residential activity on those lots smaller than 15.0ha is also considered to be a non-complying activity pursuant to Rule 6.5.7(i).
The Proposed Second Generation District Plan (“the Proposed Plan”) was notified on 26 September 2016. Rules 16.7.4 (minimum site size for rural zones) and 16.9.5.5 (assessment of subdivision performance standard contraventions – minimum site size) were given immediate legal effect pursuant to section 86D of the Resource Management Act 1991 at the time of notification. Accordingly, the Proposed Plan rules also need to be considered alongside the Dunedin City District Plan rules.
The subject sites are zoned Rural – Peninsula Coast in the Proposed Second Generation Plan, and are within the Peninsula Coast Outstanding Natural Landscape. There are land stability risks identified for this site. Parts of the subject sites are shown as Hazard 2 – Land Instability, and Hazard 3 – Coastal. The coastal edges of the property are shown as Coastal Environment and Archaeological Alert Layer. There is a Wahi Tupuna Site 36 – Poatiri (Mt Charles) on-site.
Rule 16.7.4 specifies a minimum site size of 40.0ha for lots created by subdivision in the Rural – Peninsula Coast zone. The proposed subdivision is therefore a non-complying activity pursuant to Rule 16.7.4.3. The land use rules for the Rural zones are not yet in effect or operative.
The application is accompanied by Ecology, Landscape, Heritage, and Geotechnical Reports.

The submission period for this application has closed, and a hearing/decision is pending.

Consent number: Non complying activity – 78 Cape Saunders Road – SUB-2016-58 & LUC-2016-336
Name of applicant: The Peninsula Holding Trust
Location of site: 78 Cape Saunders Road, being that land held in Computer Freehold Registers 207075 (43.3047ha), 95918 (34.0552ha), 95919 (2004m2), OT15C/195 (20.5432ha), OT45/181 (5741m2), OT254/294 (18.2058ha), OT254/295 (20.8768ha), OT205/103 (102.9627ha), and OT11B/1033 (16.9917ha)
Address for service: The Peninsula Holding Trust, C/O Cubitt Consulting Ltd, 11 Bedford Street, Dunedin 9012

RELATED DOCUMENTS AT DCC WEBSITE:
● Evidence tabled at the hearing
● Submitter Pre-Hearing Evidence
● Applicant’s Pre-Hearing Evidence
● Agenda
● Application documents
● Submissions
Go to http://www.dunedin.govt.nz/council-online/notified-resource-consents/notified-applications-pending/sub-2016-58-and-luc-2016-336

Download: Applicant’s Photographs

[screenshots – click to enlarge] *see Clearwater’s quarry at Lot 3

Site plans

Applicant’s tabled site plan which includes covenants

Applicant’s tabled revised plan for Lot 4

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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Filed under Agriculture, Architecture, Business, Construction, DCC, Democracy, Design, District Plan, Dunedin, Economics, Geography, Heritage, Housing, Infrastructure, Media, Name, New Zealand, Ngai Tahu, People, Pet projects, Politics, Project management, Property, Proposed 2GP, Public interest, Resource management, Site, Tourism, Town planning, Travesty

DCC hideous ‘Adam of your labours’

ODT 28.1.17 (page 30)

2017-01-28-20-33-02[phoneshot scribbled – click to enlarge]

DCC is rubbish governance.

Comparing the two territorial authorities, ORC and DCC, ODT says “the regional council has been a wiser council-company owner”.

Ain’t that the sheer truth with bells on, oversewn with screaming sirens and flashing red lights.

Stuff that up your blood-soaked jumper, Dunedin City Council.

DCC takes the knife to Ratepayers’ private wealth, there’s no sign of let up. Blunt force trauma, gushing blood and the decimated entrails of a city once thriving.

The squalid recent history of Dunedin City Council is one of incompetence and worse : failed schemes, massive overburden of debt, inability to prioritise, budget and project manage, crippling levels of deferred maintenance and upgrades for essential infrastructure, unprosecuted thefts, corruption in certain of the CCOs and serious questions about the holding company (last year, a ‘partial audit’), Otago power network assets burnt off (no safety and security of supply), a dead loss-making stadium and associated companies clawing $20million per annum off ratepayers (no valid explanation, just mindless spin), destruction of high class Taieri soils for housing sprawl initiated by city councillor with a private profit motive, trite succession of gormless city councillors lining own pockets/inflating egos at the council table – leaches and nematodes have more credibility. On it goes at DCC.

Otago Regional Council is debt free.

### ODT Online Sat, 28 Jan 2017
Editorial: City and ORC merger unlikely
OPINION Any progress towards one or more unitary authorities in Otago will be difficult, largely because of the region’s geography. The Dunedin City Council this week ordered a report into a possible merger between it and the Otago Regional Council, and it would be surprising if proposals which might emerge make much headway with the Local Government Commission.
….Since 1988, the [ORC] has received a total of $148.9million in dividends and special payments from Port Otago. How the city must covet that cash. Given the city’s pressures on Delta/Aurora for dividends and the regional council’s hands-off attitude to the Port Company, it would seem, however, the regional council has been a wiser council-company owner.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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ORC $wimming in it —SHOULD afford more Otago environmental protection

….not a new office palace at Dunedin.

Spending figures on flood protection and river management, particularly on the Leith and Taieri systems, and public transport, are heavily weighted towards Dunedin.

### ODT Online Mon, 9 Jan 2017
‘Dunedin-centric’ ORC gets roasting
By David Williams
Michael Laws’ already poor appraisal of the Otago Regional Council just gets worse. Official council figures provided to the Otago Daily Times detail the council’s $56million in reserves, its plans for spending up to $24million on a new Dunedin headquarters and a breakdown of spending in the Queenstown Lakes, which is affected by lake snow. Mr Laws, who was elected to the council’s Dunstan ward in October, said: “It’s worse than we thought, to a degree. They’ve got a huge amount of money and they spend very little.”
….He accused the council of having a very hands-off policy towards Dunstan issues and particularly Queenstown and the lakes over the past five years. “It’s withdrawn staff from the area, it’s not monitored the lakes which is its basic statutory responsibility, it’s spent very little money dealing with pests, whether flora or fauna, and I think personally that the reason in large part is if you don’t live in an area you don’t properly understand it.”
Read more

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L A K E ● S N O W

10.6.16
The alga called Cyclotella, or recently renamed by algologists as Lindavia intermedia, is related to the ‘rock snot’ alga didymo. The recent appearance of lake snot is associated with the emergence and dominance in Cyclotella, according to a team of scientists from the University of Otago, Landcare Research and Université Laval (Canada).
–Erica Mather, Sciblogs: Southern NZ lakes congested with algal snot

lake-snow-stuff-co-nzLake Snow [stuff.co.nz]

ORC – Lake Snow
In recent years, a slimy substance called ‘lake snow’ has been found in Lake Wanaka, Wakatipu and Hawea. Otago Regional Council (ORC) is working with stakeholders and researchers to find out more about where lake snow comes from, what influences it, and how it could be managed. Read more

Lake snow brochure (PDF, 1 MB)

QLDC – Lake Algae
For a number of years the Lake Wanaka water supply has been affected by the presence of algae. The algae is not harmful from a health perspective, but has had an effect water filters, irrigation fittings, new appliances and other equipment. The algae is not noticed at all the properties in Wanaka and no pattern has been found. In mid-2016 QLDC began receiving reports of algae build-ups in a number of water filters around Queenstown that take water from Lake Wakatipu. It has been identified as the same algae that has affected the water system in Wanaka for the past eight years or so.
Identifying and managing lake algae

In 2004 Didymosphenia geminata, a diatom commonly known as didymo or rock snot, was discovered in New Zealand, the first time it was found in the Southern Hemisphere. To restrict its spread, the whole of the South Island of New Zealand was declared a controlled area in December 2005. All items, such as boats, fishing gear, clothing, and vehicles, that have been in a stream, river or lake, must be cleaned before they enter another waterway.
Wikipedia: Didymo in New Zealand

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### Stuff.co.nz Last updated 12:14, Sep 1 2016
Fears lake snow could make Lake Wakatipu ‘unfishable’
By Jo McKenzie-McLean
An experienced fishing guide fears Lake Wakatipu could end up “unfishable” with the invasive spread of the algae bloom, lake snow, and warns Lake Dunstan could be next. Queenstown fishing guide Stu Dever, armed with his rod and reel, voiced his concerns about the presence of lake snow in Lake Wakatipu to Otago Fish and Game committee members at a meeting in Cromwell last month. His rod was clogged with the thick globules of algae after only one day’s fishing on the lake … The mucous-like substance is produced by the algae cyclotella has now been observed in three South Island lakes.
Read more

### Stuff.co.nz Last updated 12:49, Nov 4 2016
Lake snow discovered in Hawea as algae spreads through southern lakes
The nuisance algae known as lake snow has been confirmed in Lake Hawea as it continues to spread through the southern lakes. Officially known as Cyclotella bodanica, it has been present in Lake Wanaka for several years and has this year been confirmed in Lake Wakatipu, Queenstown. It has also been found in Lake Coleridge in Canterbury. It does not present a health risk but can block water filters on commercial premises and residential appliances such as dishwashers and washing machines.
Read more 

### Stuff.co.nz Last updated 11:13, Dec 19 2016
Laws calls for Otago Regional Council to apologise over Lake Snow ‘inaction’
By Jo McKenzie-McLean
The Otago Regional Council needs to “apologise and atone” for its “grossly inadequate” action over the Lake Snow problem in the alpine lakes, newly-elected Otago regional councillor Michael Laws says. “Lake snow was notified to the Otago Regional Council in 2008. It did nothing until September 2016, and in that time the algae and its effects have taken a firm grip on Lake Wanaka and now spread to other lakes. As with the invasive weed lagorosiphon [oxygen weed], the ORC’s inertia on lake snow stands as an object lesson of what can go wrong when you react, and react late, rather than research. There are some massive lessons for our governance here. We dropped the ball big time and need to accept, apologise and atone.” Cr Laws said there needed to be a significant financial investment in the southern lakes and that any delay would only make the problems less manageable and more expensive. “The Otago Regional Council has no debt, and $56 million in reserves. It wants to spend $25 million on a new HQ in Dunedin. I say those priorities are dead wrong: The lakes and our waterways – along with pest destruction – must be our prime responsibilities.”
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****

Dr Schallenberg and other scientists have been frustrated by rejected funding applications on research into lake snow, and the Otago Regional Council only stepped up monitoring last year, although it has paid for some research on Lake Wanaka’s health.

### ODT Online Sat, 7 Jan 2017
Editorial: The lake snow threat
It is past time to drive action on “lake snow” (“lake snot”). The slime produced by an  algae in Lake Wanaka — it is also in Lake Coleridge and was found last year in Lakes Hawea and Wakatipu — is unsightly and a significant nuisance. More importantly, it could have long-term and unknown ecological impacts.
….It was first noticed in Lake Wanaka about 2004 as those fishing spoke of fouled lines and blocked engine intakes. Washing machine and other filters in Wanaka began to become clogged because the town water supply comes from the lake. […] The same algae had also been found in another relatively unpolluted lake in Seattle in the United States. Just like didymo (“rock snot”), under certain conditions cyclotella secretes large amounts of mucus. This can all join together to form a mat. Just why it appears is still a mystery.
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### ODT Online Sat, 7 Jan 2017
Lake snot costs hit six figures
By Guy Williams
Queenstown hotels are being forced to install expensive filtration systems to prevent lake snot (also called lake snow) damaging or blocking their water systems. Sofitel Queenstown Hotel manager Vincent Macquet said a self-cleaning filter identical to one operating at Dunedin Hospital was installed at the hotel five weeks ago at a cost of “hundreds of thousands” of dollars. Lake snot began clogging its water system last winter, causing hot-water valves to fail and reducing water pressure. […] Macquet said it was a “touchy subject” with hoteliers, with representatives from seven hotels meeting Queenstown Lakes District Council staff about a month ago to express their concerns.
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didymo-hawea-landcareresearch-co-nzDidymo, Hawea [landcareresearch.co.nz]

Didymo (aka rock snot) [jrn.com via knownews.com]

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

9 Comments

Filed under Architecture, Business, Central Otago, Construction, Democracy, Design, Dunedin, Economics, Finance, Geography, Infrastructure, Media, OAG, Ombudsman, ORC, Pet projects, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Queenstown Lakes, Resource management, Tourism, University of Otago, What stadium

ORC New HQ : Reminder, fiduciary duty and core responsibilities

Land ● Water ● Air ● Coast ● Built Environment ● Biota ● Natural Hazards ● Energy ● Wastes and Hazardous Substances

The core business of the Otago Regional Council is environmental protection, not real estate investment. –Eckhoff

### ODT Online Tue, 21 Jun 2016
Environmental cost to building
By Gerrard Eckhoff
OPINION The decision the Otago Regional Council will have to make on a new administration block sometimes means deciding on the lesser evil. Whatever the decision, councils don’t get much thanks for avoiding one bad choice in favour of another. The option of leasing space in an existing building, thereby leaving a large amount of capital free for the ORC’s primary environmental functions, has been summarily dismissed by the chairman of the ORC. This is despite matters of “significant investment” (such as a new building) requiring special consultation with our ratepayers, who will in turn expect that their or any suggestion will not be so easily dismissed. […] The ORC’s failure to understand that environmental inaction simply transfers cost from this generation to the next and with a multiplier effect is inexcusable. What price must environmental imperatives pay for a new building? That is the real question the ORC must ask of itself.
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● Gerrard Eckhoff, of Central Otago, is an Otago regional councillor.

Otago Regional Council meeting
█ [today] Wednesday, 22 June 2016 at 9:00 a.m.
Council Chamber, 70 Stafford Street, Dunedin
Members of the public are welcome to attend.

Download: Agenda includes minutes and reports (PDF, 2402 KB)

Go to Part C Item 7 (pages 68-70)
Report: ORC Head Office Accommodation Update. DCS, 16/6/16
The report provides an update on the Council and staff workshops held to help inform the next stage of the project.

[extract]

ORC 22.6.16 Council Agenda Part C Item 7 pp68-70

Related Posts and Comments:
● 9.6.16 ORC empire building again : Consultants give questionable options…
11.8.12 ODT editorial (spot on!) — ORC temporary headquarters
26.6.09 ORC headquarters [incl news items to present day]

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

Election year. This post is offered in the public interest.

18 Comments

Filed under Agriculture, Architecture, Business, Construction, Democracy, Design, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Events, Finance, Geography, Heritage, Infrastructure, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Pet projects, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Resource management, Site, Tourism, Town planning, Transportation, Travesty, Urban design, What stadium

Pollution in Chinese cities

China pollution dnews-files-2013 [ddmcdn.com]City pollution [ddmcdn.com]

### stuff.co.nz Last updated 12:20, March 7 2015
Film highlighting pollution woes vanishes from China’s Internet
By Dian Zhang
A 104-minute film lecture that outlines the serious pollution in China has been removed from the nation’s internet, after receiving millions of views and raising hopes that the country’s leadership might tackle China’s widespread smog problem. The film – by Chai Jing, one of the best-known journalists in China and a well-known former state television reporter – was released right before China’s two most important political events, the National People’s Congress and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference. Before the movie was censored, a story from Xinhua News Agency, China’s official press agency, praising the film was deleted online the same night the article was posted, offering a hint of the government’s real attitude.

Released last Saturday, Under the Dome had received 42.9 million views on Youku, a video-sharing website like YouTube, by 5 pm Thursday (local time). It prompted 530,460 posts on Weibo.

In the film, Chai gives a speech and shows data and interviews with government officials and environmental experts from China and abroad. The film shows striking images of the extent of air pollution in a number of Chinese cities, as well as rivers fouled by chemicals and littered with flotsam and dead fish. Chai also travelled to Los Angeles and London to gauge their experiences dealing with smog.
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█ Chai Jing’s documentary is well worth watching. Preamble via CNN.

CNN Published on Mar 3, 2015
China smog documentary goes viral
Director of China Environment Forum Jennifer Turner discusses a new documentary titled “Under the Dome” that discusses pollution in China.

Linghein Ho Published on Mar 1, 2015
Chai Jing’s review: Under the Dome – Investigating China’s Smog 柴静雾霾调查:穹顶之下 (full translation)
ENGLISH SUBTITLES ARE FULLY TRANSLATED
For more information: http://www.linghein.me/tr_u/
English Subtitles: FULLY UPDATED | Japanese Subtitles: update to 09:25 | French Subtitles: update to 31:06
Former celebrity TV anchor Chai Jing quit her job after her baby daughter was born with a lung tumor, and after a year of rigorous investigation, launched this 1 hour 40 minute documentary about China’s smog: what is smog? Where does it come from? What do we do from here? It is very powerful in many ways. English subtitles are now completely finished, and other languages are being added.
Music: “Brotherhood” by John Dreamer (Google Play • iTunes)

[click to enlarge]
18kx19av6svsagif3 photo comparatives (*gif) taken by NASA’s Aqua satellite via gizmodo.com

Related Post and Comments:
23.3.13 Chongqing, Southwest China

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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