EW Reaction (2)
Saturday, April 2, 2011 at 1:28PM
Bill Barclay

My post on 18 March (EW Reaction) regarding "over borrowing, overstocking, over-use of supplements,  excess nitrogenous and effluent run-off, and consequent degradation of waterways" brought about the usual defensive over-reaction. I did not take much notice until the article in Friday's HH by Karoline Tuckey reporting on the annual Dairying and Clean Streams progress report.

Just as expected, the Waikato copped the greatest criticism for having the highest non-compliance of any district in the country, and the fact that these results are having a major effect on the national average was indicated. Full compliance in the Waikato rates at 52% as against the national average of 65%. 

Attitude is everything, and the paradox of milk-fat returns approaching an all-time high of $8, while compliance falls further behind cannot go uncommented. Greed and the drive to higher production off the same area of pasture is what is leading to these depressing figures.

It is interesting to note the increasing numbers of fancy fishing rigs with 150hp plus motors being driven through Thames on any day of the week to launch at Waikawau and elsewhere, and speculate that a considerable proportion of these marine status symbols are the proud posessions of the same Waikato dairy farmers and sharemilkers who are having such dreadful compliance difficulties.

Is it unreasonable to suggest that many of these same keen amateur fishermen, and others who are not of this ilk, consider redirecting part of their not inconsiderable income towards dealing with the effluent problems that are now so universal, and which are rapidly becoming the shame of this country's agricultural industry?

If neither this Government, nor EW or Fonterra are prepared to effectively enforce the rules that are already in place, perhaps shame is the last resort. Claims of incremental improvement just do not ring true, nor cut the mustard. 

 

 

 

Article originally appeared on BillBarcBlog (http://billbarclay.co.nz/).
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