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Manawatu Standard: Letter to the Editor, 3 Sept 2010

  Federated Farmers

It is with great sadness and deep frustration that I read of the illogical and self-serving stance taken by Manawatu Federated Farmers. They agree they must do something about the problems they are causing. Yet in an action bordering on the farcical, they refuse to sign the very accord which over 30 leaders from the local community have developed to deal with the problem. Federated Farmers claim to want a river they can be proud of, but need ‘ready access to credible scientific information that identifies the causes, the remedies and the economic costs involved with any solution’

As Peter Dunne of UnitedFuture has said, “It is the last part of that statement that really shows the farmers true concerns. While they are willing to pay lip service to being part of the solution, they will only do so if they feel the cost is not too high to them.”

Can I say to Mckellar and Barrow, shame on you and your ilk. To ensure you maximise your profits you are asking the whole community and future generations to pay for your selfish unsustainable actions. Do not try and hide behind glib phrases such as “wishing to ensure the river sustains native fish species” when it is a lack of action on your part that is helping destroy the habitats these species depend upon. The science is there and if you are having trouble understanding the studies then please allow me to explain the situation to you in simple words. The river is polluted: Fact not emotion. Farming, and particularly dairying, is a major contributor to this pollution: Fact not emotive language. Action is urgently required: Fact not emotion. And the community both in the Manawatu and throughout New Zealand want action: Fact not emotive reaction.

Wake up boys. You are becoming a sick joke.

Doug Stevens
UnitedFuture Spokesperson for the environment and outdoor recreation.



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