Word of the day


Sinter – a hard siliceous or calcareous deposit precipitated from mineral springs; a whitish porous incrustation, usually consisting of silica, that is deposited from hot springs; solid material which has been sintered, especially a mixture of iron ore and other materials prepared for smelting; a cinder; coalesce into a solid or porous mass by means of heating (and usually also compression) without liquefaction; to cause to become a coherent mass by heating without melting.

Sowell says


Rural round-up


Signing of the methane pledge is irresponsible :

“Minister James Shaw’s signing the methane pledge is irresponsible and weak”, says FARM Chairman, Robin Grieve.

“There was absolutely no need for New Zealand to join this jamboree because we don’t have high fossil sourced methane emissions, we don’t have lots of leaky pipes and inefficient processes. What we do have is biogenic methane mostly from our ruminant livestock and this is quite different to fossil sourced methane. It is an amateurish mistake to conflate the two”.

“Industrial nations with high fossil sourced methane emissions have pledged to fix leaky pipes and improve processes to reduce fossil sourced methane by 30%. This pledge makes sense for them because leaky pipes should be fixed in any case and it is an easy and economical fix which will have environmental benefits”. . . 

Act now to meet climate’s growing unpredictability, farmers warned :

Farmers and growers are being told they need to adapt to growing food under increasingly dry conditions.

Three National Science Challenges, Resilience to Nature’s Challenges, Our Land and Water, and The Deep South Challenge held three webinars and a symposium recently to kick-start a research based conversation about climate change adaptation in the food and fibre sector.

A report summarising those talks, Growing Kai Under Increasing Dry, shows farmers need to begin to adapt now.

The report calls for regional councils to undertake clear planning for likely future climate scenarios in their regions, and to engage with farmers and growers to develop a shared understanding of the scenarios’ implications for the primary sector. . . 

How many cows need to go?

“The Government needs to answer how it’s going to meet its pledge to cut biogenic methane emissions,” says ACT’s Primary Production spokesperson Mark Cameron.

“The Government has pledged to cut biogenic methane by 10 per cent on 2017 levels by 2030, and by between 24 to 47 percent lower by 2050.

“According to James Shaw this does not require any new initiatives due to pre-existing Zero Carbon Act commitments, but there are still a range of questions to be asked.

“How are they planning to do this? Is it herd reductions or is it through new technologies? When will the Government bring farmers into this conversation? It’s their livelihoods at stake. . . 

Dairy prices up 3.7 percent as commodity prices reach record high :

Commodity prices have shot to a new record, with dairy, aluminium and meat fetching strong prices.

The ANZ World Commodity Price Index lifted 2.1 percent last month.

The report says freight prices are stabilising, although costs remain elevated, with persistent supply chain disruptions.

It said rising freight costs were inflationary, and expected to drive up New Zealand’s consumer price index to a peak of just under 6 percent by year’s end. . . 

New Zealand apple industry appoints new chief executive:

New Zealand Apples and Pears Inc. (NZAPI) today announced the appointment of its new Chief Executive, Terry Meikle.

Mr Meikle joins NZAPI with an impressive track record of strategic management and international trade relations, having led NZ agriculture and horticulture interests across the Americas including roles as Agriculture Counsellor at the NZ Embassy in Mexico City, Regional Manager North America for Beef and Lamb NZ and as First Secretary Agriculture and Trade for the New Zealand Embassy based in Washington.

“My networking, advocacy and leadership experience has been in both the public sector and through representing a levy funded organisation. These collaborative leadership roles have involved close partnership and engagement with a variety of public and private sector stakeholders,” says Mr Meikle. . .


Grape fungicide approved for use :

A new fungicide which controls bunch rot and powdery mildew in grapes has been approved for use in New Zealand, subject to conditions.

Kenja contains the active ingredient isofetamid, which is new to New Zealand but already approved for use in Australia, Europe, the USA, Canada, and Japan.

The applicant, ISK New Zealand, sought approval to import Kenja as a concentrate to be applied to grapes using ground-based methods.

During the application process, ISK submitted that its product helps to combat fungicide resistance, and is less toxic than other fungicides. It noted that Kenja doesn’t carry any human health hazard classifications. . . 

Inflation stealing wage rises


Kiwi workers are getting poorer in spite of wage increases:

Data released today by Stats NZ shows that, over the past year, the cost of living has risen twice as fast as wages, says National’s Finance spokesperson Michael Woodhouse.

“The latest quarterly Labour Market Statistics show that on average wages went up by 2.4 per cent over the past 12 months. Unfortunately, inflation over that same period was more than double that figure, running at 4.9 percent, the highest rate in 25 years.

“The cost of living is rising twice as fast as wages. That means Kiwis are getting poorer under Labour”.

“Labour has engineered a massive increase in Government spending, which is up an eye-watering 40 per cent after just four years in office. With so much of this increase being poured into wasteful and ideological projects that don’t increase the size of the economy, it’s no wonder prices are soaring much faster than wages.

“On top of this, Kiwis are paying more tax under Labour. In just the past year the Government took in 12 per cent more income tax than it did the year before, as more and more taxpayers are caught by tax brackets that have not been adjusted for inflation.

“The Government is showing no signs of halting its wasteful spending, with $35 billion announced in just the last week in the form of a fanciful underground tram in Auckland, light rail in Wellington and a $15 billion spend up to buy carbon credits from overseas. All of this will further increase debt, inflation and ultimately taxes.

“With the cost of living rising fast Labour needs to halt its wasteful spending or risk runaway inflation.”

It’s not only workers who are losing the value of their earnings to rising costs.

Anyone with money in the bank will be getting poorer as the real value of their investment is undermined by inflation.

We’re a long way from the double digit inflation that did so much damage until the ‘failed’ reforms of the 1980s but inflation feeds on itself and there is absolutely no indication from the government of any willingness to curb its spending.

Nor is it showing any inclination to adjust tax rates so that wage rises aren’t eroded by bracket creep.

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