I have been helping Forest & Bird campaign for the Sea Change – Tai Timu Tai Pari marine spatial plan. I talk about some of the work I am doing in the Gulf here.
The population of any given species needs to be strong enough to handle destructive natural and made made events. Without this resilience one event can wipe a species of the face of the planet forever. In New Zealand our rarest endemic breeding bird is the New Zealand fairy tern. With a population of only 40 birds this is the breakdown for the 2017-18 season.
It’s a fragile population with too many males (1:2 ratio). The other major concern is that during breeding season 80% of the population is on the same 40km stretch of coast. Here is where the breeding happened in 2017-18:
The fragility is particularly exposed when we think about the threat of an oil spill from the RMS Niagara. This wreck is a time bomb just off the coast from this critical breeding habitat. Even a small amount of the submerged oil could easily cover the fairy terns breeding grounds for weeks, starving the birds to death in a matter of days.
When I first heard about erosion in the Hunua Ranges causing havoc for Auckland’s water supply I wondered if it was because of recent deforestation. Drone footage shot by Watercare confirmed that theory for me (see stills below from this video). It seems strange media are not talking about it. To me it looks like just another case of our water being compromised for private profit.
A little bird told me Watercare own the land and were in the midst of replanting it with natives – it would be good to know the full details. I will email them.
(2,089-72 = 2017) So sometime in 2017 they decided to start harvesting. But the wood in the pictures looks at least months old. My guess is the harvesting that caused the contamination was done in 2016 for private profit. Hard to tell from the information received. Awaiting a report with interest.
This infographic was adapted from a piece of work I just completed for the Industry Pollution Prevention Program (IP3). The landfill problem is huge and scary.
This is so gross – documented here for Auckland Councils Pollution Response Team.
Please click on the thumbnails to see the full image.
The Ambiance Impex brands dumped into the stream are all branded Paradise.
When I first noticed the dumping in March and reported it to council the dumping was not so bad.
Even tho this site 120m from the Manukau (West coast of NZ) it flows through the Tamaki Estuary to the Hauraki Gulf (East coast of NZ).
UPDATE: 27 November.
Eight months later and the site is still sending plastic like these Paradise branded ‘cut green beans’ into the harbour. I am giving the council regular updates on the site but I don’t know how much (if any) is being cleaned up by Ambiance Impex or if its just getting washed into the ocean.