Hawkes Bay Regional Council told to stop breaking promises on stock feedlots
- Richie Cosgrove
Missing in Action – what’s Hawke’s Bay Regional Council doing about feedlots?
Hawke’s Bay Regional Council is being told to “lift its game” and stop breaking the promises it has made to crackdown on the region’s stock feedlots.
The council is now being taken to court by a Hawke’s Bay businessman for failing to regulate feedlots which he believes are polluting the district.
Fish and Game says the council could have avoided legal action if it had fulfilled its 2016 promise to tackle the issue.
Fish and Game New Zealand’s chief executive Martin Taylor says instead, the council has broken its promises.
“The council promised in 2016 to act, saying the council could no longer tolerate such practices. Despite the promises, by all appearances nothing has changed,” Mr Taylor says.
“Fish and Game publicly congratulated him for making that promise after it was revealed his region’s feedlots did not comply with the rules.
“At the time, the council said the farmers responsible were driven by greed and had made it look like idiots. Nothing has changed and his council still looks that way because of its failure to act.”
Martin Taylor says feedlots are a major concern.
“The way feedlots are being operated is environmentally unacceptable – the sediment and effluent runoff is damaging the environment, let alone the animal welfare issues feedlot operations raise,” Mr Taylor says.
“Hawke’s Bay Regional Council needs to start properly enforcing its own rules when it comes to feedlots and reassure people that their ability to swim, fish and gather food from their local rivers and streams is being protected,” Mr Taylor says.
“Kiwis want swimmable waterways and a cleaner environment. They have every right to be fed up with such blatant abuse and broken promises by those who are meant to enforce the rules.”