Rural round-up

August 30, 2019

Dairy farmers have ‘stepped up’ – Yvonne O’Hara:

Dairy farmers are not getting the credit they deserve for stepping up their game to improve their practices, dairy farmer and industry climate change ambassador Dean Alexander believes.

He and wife Suzanne winter 1200 cows on two flat 179ha and 242ha platforms effective near Winton.

”As an industry, we have made huge innovations in the past 10 to 15 years, which has been driven by regulations,” Mr Alexander said.

”Changes needed to happen and we have stepped up our game and ought to get credit for the progress we have made.”

He said the quality of water into waterways and estuaries had improved compared to 20 to 30 years ago. . .

Role of red meat in a healthy diet is globally recognised – Rod Slater:

I was saddened to read the article Hospitals should lead the way by cutting out meat (August 20) by Professor John Potter. He has a huge amount of experience and, unfortunately, he used every ounce of it to produce a thoroughly disingenuous and misleading piece of writing.

Firstly, I would like to address his criticisms of Dietitians NZ (DNZ). DNZ provided a statement in response to the Ministry of Health (MoH) releasing a report which suggested less meat and dairy in the health sector to reduce the impact on the environment, in what seems to be a move by the MoH that is severely deficient in local context. 

DNZ is entirely independent and performs a vital role in representing the nutrition scientists who have made it their life’s work to understand and advise on diet and health matters. For Prof Potter to discredit its response on the basis of Beef + Lamb New Zealand’s “support” of DNZ is ludicrous. . . .

New grass could reduce methane emissions from animals – Maja Burry:

New Zealand scientists trialling a potentially environmentally sustainable grass in the United States hope to study its effects on animals in the next two years.

The genetically modified ryegrass has been developed by the Crown Research Institute, AgResearch, at its grasslands centre in Palmerston North.

Modelling has found it can grow up to 50 percent faster than conventional ryegrass, it is more resistant to drought and could reduce methane emissions from animals.

Trials are now progressing in the mid-west of the US, where genetically modified organisms can be field tested outside of the lab. . . 

 IrrigationNZ responds to Waitangi Tribunal report on national freshwater – changes to New Zealand’s water allocation framework:

IrrigationNZ says that the timing of the Waitangi Tribunal report and recommendations on freshwater and geothermal resources puts Māori rights and interests in freshwater firmly back in the public spotlight, just when the Government is set to release a raft of policy changes under the ‘Essential Freshwater’ package.

“We are in favour of the Waitangi Tribunal report’s recommendation to establish a body to oversee future water governance and management, including whether a Water Act is required to provide a new framework for freshwater,” says Elizabeth Soal, Chief executive of IrrigationNZ.

“We agree, and firmly believe, that New Zealand needs a national water strategy and a body to oversee this strategy so that this precious resource can be used and allocated for the benefit of all,” says Ms Soal. . . 

MPI pair helping farmers through `M. bovis’ process – Toni Williams:

Empowering farmers working through the Mycoplasma bovis process involves Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) regional managers Charlotte Austin and Lydia Pomeroy working long hours.

But, as a way of being prepared to fight for their cases and keeping up to date with the issues, it is something they are only too happy to do.

”We certainly lose sleep, but we also understand that it’s not nearly as big an impact on us.

”That’s why we will quite happily work a 12, 13 or 14-hour day ‘cos we understand that these individuals are living it,” said Ms Austin, speaking to media after the recent Mid Canterbury Mycoplasma bovis Advisory Group meeting in Ashburton. . .

What’s our beef with beef? – Helen Browning:

Red meat is not inherently unsustainable, despite recent headlines – it’s how it is farmed that matters.

A new report by the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) called for us to make radical changes to the way we farm and eat to prevent further global warming. But what did the IPPC report actually say on meat eating? Were the NFU and others right to say reporting was misleading?

As ever, the issues are complex, hard to convey accurately in an eye-catching headline or a snappy tweet.

The IPCC is clear that, on a global level, ruminant livestock – that’s cattle and sheep – carry a high greenhouse gas footprint. This leads to the conclusion that if we eat less red meat, we can reduce these emissions. . .


Wai now?

August 3, 2012

Finance Minister Bill English and State Services Minister Tony Ryall have asked the Waitangi Tribunal for more information on its findings, recommendations and supporting reasoning in its inquiry into national fresh water and geothermal resources.

“The Government wants to consider the Tribunal’s recommendations and the reasons behind them as part of its decision on the Mighty River Power share offer this year,” they say.

“As we have said, we want to act in good faith and carefully consider the Tribunal’s recommendations.

“However, we appreciate the Tribunal’s interim direction on 30 July did not make substantive findings on any of the issues it identified. So we have today asked the Tribunal to provide its recommendations and reasoning by 24 August.

“To proceed with a Mighty River share offer in 2012, ministers would need to make decisions by the first week of September.

“We would do this on the basis of all the information available to us at that time, including the Waitangi Tribunal’s memorandum of 30 July.

“However, ministers would welcome the opportunity to consider the Tribunal’s detailed findings, its recommendations and its reasoning, which we do not have at this stage.”

Not all Maori are happy about the Maori Council’s decision to take the issue of water ownership to the Tribunal.

Trans Tasman writes:

Whatever motives the Maori Council had in taking the claim to the tribunal, the fact is the Maori Council in its own cognisance does not have any “rights” either to a global water resource, or a particular lake or river. Iwi or hapu may establish an “interest,” and there has been some push-back from iwi who believe the Maori Council claim could put their individual claims at risk.

Given this it’s easy to wonder if the Council is at least as much about delaying the asset sales as it is about claims to the water.

Otherwise why (or wai) now?

Contact Energy is a private company which uses the Clutha River and has been doing so for decades.

There are private and public water schemes the length and breadth of the country which take water for personal and commercial use, many of which have been doing so for more than 100 years.

None of these have been regarded as endangering any interest Maori might have in the rivers.

Why would the partial float of Mighty River Power be any different?


Water woes

July 14, 2012

Column of the day by Jim Hopkins:

He starts:

Oh, darn. “Once more unto the beach, dear friends.” Well, not the beach, more like the river, puddle, rill, and stream. But the principle’s the same. And the issue’s the same. And the argument’s the same. And the reaction’s the same. And the reaction to the reaction is the same.

And here we go again – another fine mess we’ve gotten ourselves into. Because we have.

This is our favourite faction replay, the old and festering sore, inflamed by good intentions and false expectations, and it just keeps on keeping on – dragging us back to Groundhog Day over and over again. Although, this time, it’s more Waterhog Day than Groundhog Day. . .

He concludes:

. . . This is something for the Crown to settle, in due and thoughtful course, with those citizens who feel they’re entitled to a specified piece of the water rights action.

Good luck to all involved. But the larger question is what price do those citizens – and their neighbours – pay to achieve that benefit.

Abraham Lincoln said “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” In which case, how long can we stand dividing our house against itself? That’s the nub of all these matters. And the matter no tribunal can resolve.

John Key has been accused of dog whistle politics for stating, correctly, that Waitangi Tribunal rulings aren’t binding on the government.

Sadly the bigots have seized on the excuse to voice their opinions.

Funny though, that no-one calls it dog-whistling when those on the other end of the political and race/identity spectrum make equally extreme comments.

What those making the fuss from that side overlook is that the tribunal might find in favour of the government’s stance. They would be quite happy for it to ignore the findings then.

But whatever the tribunal rules and whatever follows, which could well be court action, Lincoln was right about the dangers of continued division.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


From grievance to growth

June 12, 2012

Trans-Tasman notes a tug-of-war between the government and Maori over the mixed ownership model for partial sales of state assets:

In seeking to get its mixed ownership model on state assets off the starting blocks the Govt is engaged in a vigorous tug-of-war with Maori interests, as it readies a share float of 49% of Mighty River Power. On the one hand some Maori interests have mounted a case with the Waitangi Tribunal to halt the sale. On the other, elements within the Iwi Leadership Forum see virtue in the share float as a safe haven for Treaty settlement money.

The more commercially minded believe a steady cash flow from investing in a utility (which has a proven record of consistent profits over a long period) is more desirable than costly court action. If the share float were to be halted it would eliminate an important avenue for safe investment of hard won Treaty settlement proceeds. Some within the Maori leadership see an opportunity to repeat the tactics of the 1980s when predecessors used the courts to extract concessions from the Govt. In its eagerness to get the sale off the ground, the Govt for its part has to find a balance which satisfies both elements.

You can’t blame anyone who sees a chance to get more from doing what they can to get it, including court action.

But real progress for Maori will come not from continuing protest and court action. It will come from moving from grievance to growth. That requires accepting  Treaty settlements, investing them wisely and using the proceeds carefully for economic and social good.


When does ownership start?

February 8, 2012

The New Zealand Maori Council lodged a claim with the Waitangi Tribunal  over Maori ownership rights to water.

If they do own the water when does the ownership start?

Do they own rain and snow or does ownership come somewhere later in the journey from the sky to the sea?


October 10 in history

October 10, 2010

On October 10:

680  Battle of Karbala: Hussain bin Ali, the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, was decapitated by forces under Caliph Yazid I.

Karbala battle.jpg 

732  Battle of Tours: The leader of the Franks, Charles Martel and his men, defeated a large army of Moors, stopping the Muslims from spreading into Western Europe. The governor of Cordoba, Abdul Rahman Al Ghafiqi, was killed during the battle.

 
Steuben - Bataille de Poitiers.png

1471  Battle of Brunkeberg: Sten Sture the Elder, the Regent of Sweden, with the help of farmers and miners, repelled an attack by Christian I, King of Denmark.

1575 Battle of Dormans: Roman Catholic forces under Duke Henry of Guise defeat the Protestants, capturing Philippe de Mornay among others.

1580  After a three-day siege, the English Army beheaded over 600 Irish and Papal soldiers and civilians at Dún an Óir, Ireland.

1780 The Great Hurricane of 1780 killed 20,000-30,000 in the Caribbean.

A map showing most of the Lesser Antillies in red. Puerto Rico and Dominican Republic is also red.

1813 Giuseppe Verdi, Italian composer, was born (d. 1901).

1830 Queen Isabella II of Spain, was born (d. 1904).

1845  In Annapolis, Maryland, the Naval School (later renamed the United States Naval Academy) opened with 50 midshipmen students and seven professors.

 

1868  Carlos Céspedes issued the Grito de Yara from his plantation, La Demajagua, proclaiming Cuba’s independence.

 

1900 Helen Hayes, American actress, was born (d. 1993).

1911  The Wuchang Uprising led to the demise of Qing Dynasty, the last Imperial court in China, and the founding of the Republic of China.

Xh1.jpg 

1911  The KCR East Rail commenced service between Kowloon and Canton.

1913  President Woodrow Wilson triggered the explosion of the Gamboa Dike, ending construction on the Panama Canal.

1920 The Carinthian Plebiscite determined that the larger part of Carinthia should remain part of Austria.

1923 Nicholas Parsons, English actor, was born.

 

1930 Harold Pinter, English playwright, Nobel laureate, was born (d. 2008)

1933  United Airlines Chesterton Crash: A United Airlines Boeing 247 was destroyed by sabotage

1935 A coup d’état by the royalist leadership of the Greek Armed Forces tak overthrew the government of Panagis Tsaldaris and established a regency under Georgios Kondylis, effectively ending the Second Hellenic Republic.

1938 The Munich Agreement ceded the Sudetenland to Nazi Germany.

1943  Double Tenth Incident in Japanese controlled Singapore.

 

1944 Holocaust: 800 Gypsy children were murdered at Auschwitz concentration camp.

1945  The Chinese Communist Party and the Kuomintang signed a principle agreement in Chongqing about the future of post-war China – the Double-Ten Agreement.

1950 Nora Roberts, American novelist, was born.

1957  U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower apologised to the finance minister of Ghana, Komla Agbeli Gbdemah, after he was refused service in a Dover, Delaware restaurant.

1957 – The Windscale fire in Cumbria –  the world’s first major nuclear accident.

 

1963  France ceded control of the Bizerte naval base to Tunisia.

1964  The opening ceremony at The 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, was broadcast live in the first Olympic telecast relayed by geostationary communication satellite.

1967 The Outer Space Treaty, signed on January 27 by more than sixty nations, comes into force.

1970  Fiji became independent.

1970 – In Montreal, Vice-Premier and Minister of Labour Pierre Laporte became the second statesman kidnapped by members of the FLQ terrorist group.

1971 London Bridge reopened in Lake Havasu City, Arizona.

 

1973  Vice President of the United States Spiro Agnew resigned after being charged with federal income tax evasion.

 

1975 The government created the Waitangi Tribunal to hear Maori claims of breaches of the Treaty of Waitangi by successive New Zealand governments.

Waitangi Tribunal created

1985  United States Navy F-14 fighter jets intercepted an Egyptian plane carrying the Achille Lauro cruise ship hijackers and forced it to land at a NATO base in Sigonella, Sicily.

Achille39.jpg

1986 An earthquake measuring 7.5 on the Richter Scale in San Salvador killed an estimated 1,500 people.

1997  An Austral Airlines DC-9-32 crashed and exploded near Nuevo Berlin, Uruguay, killing 74.

1998  A Lignes Aériennes Congolaises Boeing 727 was shot down by rebels in Kindu, Democratic Republic of the Congo, killing 41 people.

2006  The Greek city of Volos flooded in one of the prefecture’s worst recorded floods.

2008 The 10 October 2008 Orakzai bombing killed 110 and injured 200 more.

 

2009  Armenia and Turkey signed protocols in Zurich, Switzerland to open their borders which had been closed for about 200 years.

Sourced from NZ history Online & Wikipedia


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