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Public the winners in Labour’s water policy

Published: Wed 9 Aug 2017 03:08 PM
Public the winners in Labour’s water policy
For Immediate Release
2:45pm 9 August 2017
Choose Clean Water NZ
Clean water campaigners warmly welcome Labour’s freshwater policy announced today and say they are excited to hear the party prioritise the health of people and their waterways.
“New Zealanders’ calls for healthy swimmable rivers and lakes are finally being heard,” says spokesperson of the student-led Choose Clean Water campaign, Marnie Prickett.
“We particularly welcome Labour’s commitment to strong nationwide freshwater quality standards.”
“They’ve agreed with New Zealanders that our kids deserve swimmable rivers and they’ve acknowledged our wildlife deserve swimmable rivers too.“
Choose Clean Water has been fighting the Government on freshwater standards since National announced changes to swimming standards in February this year.
NIWA found that National’s policy weakened existing standards, allowing more faecal contamination in New Zealanders’ swimming spots.
“Swimmable rivers means having strict, enforceable standards for not only faecal contamination but also other contaminants, like nutrients and sediment, that can make waterways unsafe for people and wildlife.”
Labour’s commitment to cut government funding for irrigation schemes has also been welcomed by the group who say that the schemes would put more pressure on already suffering waterways.
Yesterday’s announcement from the National Party on the allocation of the Freshwater Improvement Fund was not a serious response to the country’s freshwater crisis, she said.
“National still doesn’t have a comprehensive plan for dealing with the ongoing pollution of the country’s freshwater.”
"Choose Clean Water calls on all parties to make the health of people and their rivers and lakes the priority for their freshwater policies."
ENDS

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