"Soviet" Plan For Freshwater Inaction

Published: Mon 10 Apr 2006 01:56 PM
"Soviet" Plan For Freshwater Inaction
Rodney Hide Monday, 10 April 2006
Press Releases - Environment & Conservation
Greater central control of fresh water, signalled in Labour's "Freshwater for the Future" strategy released today, means that pollution and inefficient water use will continue, says ACT Leader Rodney Hide.
"Government wants to centralise control over fresh water, putting privately owned, secure, tradable water rights out of the question", Mr Hide said.
"New Zealanders will be disappointed that instead of considering all the options, Labour has fallen back on its 'command and control' ideology.
"This is a strategy straight from the bankrupt former Soviet Union.
"All this report promises is a 'leadership group' of bureaucrats to 'identify', 'establish criteria', 'investigate' and 'develop strategies' over the next two years.
"Labour has not committed itself to taking a single definable action.
"All this document tells us is that Labour wants more centralised control over water allocation, when what New Zealanders need is the exact opposite.
"Environment Minister David Benson-Pope has blown an opportunity to introduce secure, tradable water rights.
"Privately held, secure, tradable water rights would mean that Kiwis owned and controlled their own access to water, with all the incentives of a property owner to properly use, protect and conserve their asset.
"Socialist governments around the world have found that nationalisation of natural resources leads to disaster. Our socialist Labour government seems destined to repeat the same mistake.
"By keeping freshwater access in the hands of bureaucrats, Labour ensures that inefficient use, pollution and mismanagement will continue", Mr Hide said.

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