Tag Archive: democracy


“US crude oil futures collapsed below $0 on Monday for the first time in history, amid a coronavirus-induced supply glut, ending the day at a stunning minus $US37.63 a barrel as desperate traders paid to get rid of oil. Brent crude, the international benchmark, also slumped, but that contract was nowhere near as weak because more storage is available worldwide” – Reuters via ODT, 21 April 2020 – But “a record 160 million barrels is sitting in tankers around the world”, as storage is quickly running out. Little will be available beyond May, Al Jazeera reported just before this news. – see Reuters.[1] This expresses the classic crisis of over-production,[2] in which the impacts can only compound and intensify. We have 1918 and 1929 rolled into one.

Oil production “cuts will come too slowly to offset rising inventories, which hit 518.6 million barrels in the US last week, just 3 percent off an all-time record, the Energy Department said. ‘If storage continues to increase at the end of the day, which seems likely considering all these Saudi barrels knocking at the door, then we are going to get to maximum storage sometime in the not so distant future,’ said Bob Yawger, director of futures at Mizuho in New York.”

US oil storage January 2017 to April 2020 - Bloomberg

US oil storage January 2017 to April 2020 – Bloomberg

Source: Brent and US oil rebound after two days of historic losses, Al Jazeera, 23 April 2020.

Two days after dip, medium-term WTI and Brent oil TradingEconomics.com ‘recovery’ graphs:

WTI year to 23 Apr 2020

WTI year to 23 Apr 2020


Brent year to 23 Apr 2020

Brent year to 23 Apr 2020

What will happen next?

It is easy to forecast another crude oil price collapse as April closes, to below $10 a barrel, trading through May to hold the $16 latest low line if possible when all the stream spare storage capacity fills up. Output cannot be curtailed by enough producers in time to stop this lengthy return to medium to long term base value lows.

The logic of the market is to settle in at single digit barrels for the duration, while the costliest North American production is demolished. Such is the damage to demand and employment now locked in by pandemic shut-down response and unleashed technological upgrades. This is the beginning of the third Great Depression. Problematic war in the Middle East is the only potential diversion of this course, and the slump’s most likely remedy – under traditional mechanisms.

We have entered a vastly different world, with a deadly pandemic unparalleled since 1918. So will we, the people, shape the new world coming? ‘Recovery must be inclusive for the social contract to survive’, the Inside Story panel concluded, in “Why did US oil prices hit negative territory?”, Al Jazeera, 22 April 2020. Also regard Earth Day: Coronavirus crisis offers big green opportunity and ask Is civil disobedience enough or do we need a climate revolution?, 23 April 2020. The young generation know their future is imperilled and precisely by what: aged infrastructure/maintainers.

Nothing is guaranteed, except that the level of comfort so many knew before Covid is now gone – Goldman: Don’t Expect U.S. Oil Prices To Recover Soon, OilPrice.com, 21 April 2020. So much of financial sector credit is based upon appreciating energy industry shares, almost ‘too big to fail’ but not quite. It is the critical modern resource, the lifeblood of industrial economy, the core carrier of growth: too little or too much energy cost, both inhibit prosperity. The long answer is we have to move on from utter dependency on fossil fuel burning.

Competing large national oil interests – North American, Russian, Middle East – are all pitched against each other, on a currently shrinking transport market with no recovery in near sight. Smaller producer countries – in Africa, Asia and South America – face at this time the same and thus proportionately larger challenges of internal cohesion – resulting from this loss of revenue, profit, reinvestment and jobs.

The March surge of Saudi oil has been shunned by the US administration so will divert to Europe and Asia, flooding the markets there, viz Rising calls to block Saudi crude shipments to US, Al Jazeera, 23 April 2020. China is stockpiling the cheapened flow as fast as it can, as the world’s biggest oil consumer.[3] Contrast to North America’s accelerating market chaos.[4]

“A slow recovery that keeps oil prices down below $20 would mean heightened risk of political instability throughout the oil-producing world. It would strain cooperation in OPEC because the members would not see the benefit of their cutbacks” – Crude carnage: ‘There’s pain everywhere’ says analyst, Al Jazeera, 22 April 2020.

It is essential to recreate trade as sustainable, now and for the future, with whole new food, energy and distribution dynamics and underpinnings. The health framework can then improve for everyone too.

Current values under watch:
tradingeconomics.com/commodity/brent-crude-oil or oilprice.com/oil-price-charts/45 WTI + Brent.

The estimated 12 to 18 month recovery time expected while awaiting a globally available Covid19 vaccine is reinforced by this being the expected time to clear the mounting glut, to effect enough oil/shale well shut-in to start lifting values. A very slow and expensive process, especially in jobs.

This will be a protracted, increasingly painful slump; most like 1929’s. The stark choice of ways out of, it is high time to discuss.[5]

[1] “Stocks are likely to be growing by 10% per month… the entire supply chain is likely to be completely full within 2-4 months. … At the end of January [industry storage] was a mere 200 million barrels below the record high of 3.1 billion barrels – reported in July 2016, shortly after the end of the previous oil price slump. … As the petroleum market moves into massive surplus, storage has become the most scarce commodity in the industry.” – Global oil storage to fill rapidly as consumption plunges, Reuters, 28 March, & “The US Energy Information Administration last week reported a record 19.3 million-barrel crude stock build. There is currently a remaining 21 million barrels of storage available at the Cushing hub in Cushing, Oklahoma. But that will fill up to the brim by mid-to-late May, Rystad Energy predicts”, U.S. crude oil storage is filling rapidly, 18 April 2020.

The World Is Running Out of Places to Store Its Oil, New York Times, 26 March 2020.

“Goldman Sachs … estimates that the world has around 1 billion barrels of spare storage capacity, but much of that will never be accessed ‘as the velocity of the current shock will breach transportation networks’ … ‘With demand collapsing but supply rising after OPEC and non-affiliated Russia failed to reach a production cut agreement in early March, global inventories could reach their maximum capacity within weeks,’ analysts at Eurasia Group said … ‘Industry participants are saying it is virtually impossible to find conventional onshore tanks. Even if OPEC and other producers start restricting their output again soon, the supply overhang from the global lockdown is so big that storage capacity will likely hit its limit by midyear. Already, ports and refiners are turning away oil tankers. This will put even more downward pressure on prices and pose an existential threat to many companies,’ Eurasia Group said. Analysts at Energy Aspects expect the ongoing oil price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia will keep production elevated until the end of the year. This means the world will run out of crude storage capacity early in the third quarter of the year, they added, with product containment arriving earlier” Oil prices could soon turn negative as the world runs out of places to store crude, analysts warn, CNBC, 1 April 2020.

The Surprising Winners And Losers Of The Global Oil Glut, yahoo finance, 20 April 2020.

A hunt for any storage space turns urgent as oil glut grows, Reuters, 21 April 2020.

“Oil prices were already weighed down by oversupply going into 2020 … ‘Market prices are showing that oil is all but worthless now. It’s going to take a long time to draw down the huge supply overhang'” – Crash! US crude futures turn negative for first time in history, Al Jazeera, 21 April 2020.

“OPEC+ coalition… agreed to slash production by about 10 million barrels a day earlier this month, but the cuts won’t kick in until May. Even then, they won’t be enough to balance out the demand destruction from the virus in the short term, which could be as high as 30 million barrels a day… Inventories at the biggest U.S. storage hub in Cushing, Oklahoma, are at the highest since 2017 and are expected to rise further. The industry-funded American Petroleum Institute reported that nationwide crude stockpiles rose 13.2 million barrels last week… Meanwhile, Indian fuel tanks are now 95% full, according to officials at three state-owned refiners” – Brent nears a 21-year low under demand and storage pressure, WorldOil, 22 April 2020.

[2] More e.g.: Overproduction, Wikipedia; The Marxist Theory of Overaccumulation and Crisis, Simon Clarke; Will coronavirus signal the end of capitalism?, Al Jazeera, 3 April 2020.

[3] “Rather than cutting back on imports, China pushed crude oil into storage tanks at almost double the rate in the first quarter of this year than it did in the same period in 2019 as the new coronavirus hit domestic consumption … Other major crude importing countries lack the ability to simply divert oil into storage on the scale that China can, meaning they will have to lower the amount of crude being imported. Even countries with large commercial and strategic storages, such as the United States, will find that the volume of crude available is so much that it will overwhelm available tank space within weeks, rather that months … by itself it’s nowhere near enough to compensate for the loss of an estimated 30 million bpd of global consumption” – China doubled crude oil storage inflows during coronavirus demand hit, Reuters, 20 April 2020.

[4] “an acute state of oversupply in North America … ‘This inflection will play out in a matter of weeks, not months, with the market likely forced to balance before June,’ Goldman analysts warned. In other words, the U.S. oil industry could lose several million barrels per day in the next few weeks in what Goldman analysts called a ‘violent rebalancing.'” The Worst Is Yet To Come For Oil Prices, OilPrice.com, 21 April + Oil Prices Hit $15 For The First Time In 21 Years 19 April + “Canada, Venezuela, Iraq, Brazil, Libya, Ecuador and even the U.S. are seeing forced shut-ins due to storage constraints, COVID-19 and low prices” A Massive Wave Of Shut-Ins Fails To Halt Oil Price Crash 21 April + $1 Oil: Saudi Arabia’s Attempt To Crush U.S. Shale 1 April + “fewest number of active rigs since January 2017.. EIA’s estimate is that the United States still produced 13 million barrels of oil per day on average this week, just 100,000 bpd off the all-time high” The Largest Rig Count Collapse In 5 Years 3 April + “only if the United States joins the cuts” Russia To Cut 1 Million Barrels Per Day, But Under One Condition + The World’s Biggest Oil Deal Can’t Save Crude Prices 6 April + Oil Prices Hit $1 Following A 90% Crash, 20 April + How Oil Prices Could Go To $100 + In Rare Development, Oil Majors Are Forced To Cut Output Under OPEC Deal viz British Petroleum-led project in Azerbaijan, 23 April + “According to Goldman Sachs, global oil storage could be completely full within the next three weeks, and another dramatic crash could follow” Oil Prices Crash 24% As Storage Fears Mount + “unprecedented situation in global energy markets has provided traditional producers with an opportunity to displace incumbents in primarily the U.S. The price war Saudi Arabia started after Russia refused to reduce output in early March has decimated budgets of energy-dependent countries and oil companies. Riyadh and Moscow are playing with fire.. Riyadh is also upping the ante in Asia where Aramco has cut prices by $3 to $5 per barrel, which is the second drastic cut in two months.. energy industry seems to be heading full speed towards a cliff, exporters in Russia and Saudi Arabia prefer to maintain their market share instead of saving the industry. Only time will tell where this strategy will lead to” Saudi Arabia And Russia Fight Bitter Market Share Battle As Oil Prices Collapse, 27 April + “UBS, a Swiss financial firm, sees oil prices rising by as much as 115 percent by the end of the year. ‘While the oil market is heavily oversupplied this quarter, we expect it to move toward balance next quarter and become under-supplied in 4Q this year as lockdown restrictions are eased and oil demand picks up,’ Mark Haefele, chief investment officer at UBS Global Wealth Management, explained. OPEC, which is preparing to roll out its joint plan to cut global oil production by 9.7 million barrels per day, is even more hopeful, predicting a recovery by the second half of the year. Mohamed Arkab, Energy Minister of OPEC’s rotating president Algeria, noted, ‘the global economy is not going to stay paralyzed,’ adding that he predicts the price of the Brent benchmark could reach $40 by the beginning of the third quarter” Are Oil Prices Heading Back Into Negative Territory? + “’this is a never-before-seen level of national economic calamity; history doesn’t get bigger than this’.. Most people, policy makers and economists are energy blind and cannot, therefore, fully grasp the gravity or the consequences of what is happening.. Oil production and prices are unlikely to regain late 2018 levels. Renewable sources will fall behind along with efforts to mitigate climate change. It’s Really Bad.. Gross domestic product (GDP) is proportional to oil consumption.. because oil is the economy. Every aspect of production and use of goods and services requires burning fossil energy. There are approximately 4.5 years of human labor in a barrel of oil. No other energy source comes close to that level of energy density.. Large segments of the U.S. oil industry will have to be nationalized before the year is over.. productivity multiplier will be essential if the U.S. economy is to avoid collapse or for it to recover if collapse is unavoidable.. foolish practice of draining America first since the beginning of tight oil production a decade ago.. The game is over for oil. We should place all of our attention on saving the economy.. a chance to simplify and to learn to be satisfied with no more than what we need. It is unlikely that we will have much choice” The Death Of U.S. Oil, 28 April + The World’s Largest Oil Fund Is Sitting On $725 Million In Unrealized Losses re United States Oil Fund, 29 April + Venezuela Oil Exports Climb As OPEC Agreement Kicks In, 4 May 2020.

[5] By the late 1920s in the United States, “the huge oversupply of crude totally disrupted the market and rational planning, thus creating sudden price collapses.” The October 1930 opening of the East Texas Black Giant, a well reservoir so vast it dwarfed everything previously known in America, caused the $1.85 per barrel price of 1926 – that had dropped to $1 by 1930 – to fall to 15, 6 or even 2 cents at times, by May 1931. – The Prize, Daniel Yergin, 1991, pp.223, 247.

[DRAFT #5 – more to be added.]

“Oil companies are some of the most important payers of dividends across financial market worldwide, providing vital income streams to pension funds and millions of smaller investors. ..fears about the ability of oil companies to maintain dividend payments beyond 2020 are unlikely to subside until a vaccine for Covid-19 is discovered” Oil prices on a slippery slope, Financial Times, 24 April 2020.
“There are about 3.2 billion barrels of crude oil already in global inventories, according to Orbital Insight, a record high. The majority of land-based oil storage is in the form of Floating Roof Tanks (FRT). Overall, Orbital Insight says the world’s FRT storage is at 55.6% capacity, so the firm sees about 2 billion more barrels of storage capacity available. Beyond FRT storage are alternatives, such as fixed roof tanks, salt caverns, or even more expensive floating storage like tankers at sea. Ursa said recent estimates put sea-based tanker storage at about 160 million barrels. Essentially, the lower price of oil drops, the more oil producers look to expensive types of storage capacity as viable. Storage capacity options have an inverse relationship to production methods, as more expensive methods of extracting oil become viable as the price rises. ‘There’s still places to put oil. It’s been diminished because volumes have increased because of the amount that’s been leased out. But they’re going to keep searching out for more and more tanks to fill,’ [Ursa Space Systems analyst Geoffrey] Craig said. ‘If this continues, there’s going to be another phase where you would have to have another shift down in price,’ Craig added. June contracts for WTI crude traded at $16.54 a barrel on Friday, down more than 9% this week. Brent crude traded at $21.22 a barrel, down more than 20% this week. Hall noted that the recent panicked sell-off was largely focused on storage capacity running out in Cushing, Oklahoma. He pointed out that storage facilities in West Texas are below 50% capacity, with Europe and the Middle East each at 60% capacity as well. ‘Throughout the rest of the U.S., in Canada and then across the rest of the world, there’s still a lot of capacity out there for storage,’ [Kayrros market strategist Ted] Hall said. ‘Tanks are relatively full and have been filling, but there’s still a lot of a lot of room to grow globally.’ So long as major production cuts don’t happen while capacity remains, the price of oil will remain tied significantly to how much storage is left. ‘Based on what’s gone on the past week, there’s certainly a chance that we’ll see more breakdowns based on really unique financial moments related to the financial contracts in crude,’ Hall added.” Oil prices could remain under pressure, according to satellite imagery analysis, CNBC, 24 April 2020.

“With a sizable contraction anticipated, the current consensus expectation is for a negative 4% reading. Economists at ING are more pessimistic, looking at the destruction in retail as they forecast a 6% dive in productivity. Retail activity outside of groceries has practically collapsed and manufacturing surveys have reported plummeting activity. Given this situation, we look for the economy to have contracted 6% annualised in Q1 with much worse to come in 2Q.” The Dow Is Eerily Calm – But Next Week Could Be Menacingly Volatile, CCN, 24 April 2020.
Bloomberg-250420 “product that the state-run Bank of China dubbed Yuan You Bao, or Crude Oil Treasure.. branches posted ads on Wechat.. ‘Crude oil is cheaper than water’.. The physical settlement for the benchmark WTI takes place at Cushing, Oklahoma. When storage tanks there fill up, the price on the expiring contract can plunge and become disconnected from the global market. With demand evaporating, inventories at Cushing were soaring. In March and April, they climbed 60% to just under 60 million barrels, out of a total working capacity of 76 million – and analysts reckon much of the remaining space is already earmarked.. ‘The trading at settlement mechanism failed. It shows the fragility of the WTI market, which is not as big as people think’.. Prices in the U.S. physical market, set by reference to the WTI settlement, also plunged, with some refiners and pipeline companies posting prices to their suppliers as low as minus $54 a barrel.. The bank had a total position of about 1.4 million barrels of oil, or 1,400 contracts, according to a person familiar with the matter. It wound up having to pay about 400 million yuan ($56 million) to settle the contracts.. a new wave of selling that swept across oil markets. On Tuesday, the June WTI contract plunged by 68% to a low of just $6.50. And this time it was not limited to U.S. contracts: Brent futures also plunged, hitting a 20-year low of $15.98 on Wednesday, driving the price of Russian, Middle Eastern and West African oil that is priced relative to it to levels near zero.. ‘suspicion of market manipulation or a flawed new computer model’.. Commodity Futures Trading Commission.. exploring.. whether the storage capacity data posted by the U.S. Energy Information Administration accurately reflected the actual availability of space.. CME [Group Inc, which owns the oil-futures exchange] argues.. market working efficiently.. ‘We witnessed history’.. brokerage PVM. ‘For the sake of oil-market stability,” this “should not be allowed to happen again'” The 20 Minutes That Broke the U.S. Oil Market, Bloomberg, 25 April + Icahn Bought Cheap Oil in Monday’s Plummet to Historic Lows, 24 April Ref. Icahn Enterprises Wikipedia + What’s Next for Global Oil Prices?: The Industry May Shut Down , Bloomberg, 26 April 2020.
“The implosion of crude oil markets in the past week holds a mirror to the broader distress in the U.S. and global economy. Social distancing measures imposed on consumers and business shutdowns enforced to combat the spread of the coronavirus pandemic have led to a collapse in international trade and travel. Gasoline and jet fuel prices have sunk as a result leading to crude oil inventories rapidly filling the available storage space. The lockdowns have also led to a slump in business revenues and consumer spending, causing mass unemployment in the U.S. not seen since the 1930s, at least temporarily. The issue for business earnings, economic growth and stock market values is that the U.S. is more dependent on consumer spending than some other economies.. ‘It shows us that the reality of demand destruction in the economy is more dire than what other risk asset prices, particularly U.S. equity prices, reflect’.. The stock market may have shrugged off the oil slump though in part because the direct hit from low oil prices is limited for Wall Street. The overall share of the energy sector in U.S. equity and even in corporate bond markets is minimal, and many fund managers have steered clear of the industry due to the challenging economics of crude production and the growing adoption of more carbon-friendly investment approaches in the U.S. and abroad. Energy represents less than 3% of the overall S&P 500 index, and around 12% of the index for sub investment-grade corporate bonds.. ” Could the crude oil market bust spell trouble for high-flying U.S. stocks?, MarketWatch, 25 April.
“The price of West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures expiring in May plunged 321%, to -$40.32 a barrel, the lowest level ever recorded” Oil plunges 321% into negative territory for the first time ever as demand evaporates, Markets Insider, 20 April 2020 – WTI:
Date, Closing Price, Open, Daily High, Daily Low
05/04/2020 20.39 19.11 21.42 18.05
05/01/2020 19.78 19.04 20.48 18.07
04/30/2020 18.84 15.64 19.44 15.45
04/29/2020 15.06 13.35 16.78 12.67
04/28/2020 12.34 12.96 13.69 10.07
04/27/2020 12.78 16.84 16.98 11.88
04/24/2020 16.94 16.78 17.97 15.64
04/23/2020 16.50 14.20 18.26 13.35
04/22/2020 13.78 16.18 10.26
04/21/2020 10.01 -14.00 13.86 -16.74
04/20/2020 -37.63 17.73 17.85 -40.32
04/17/2020 18.27 20.00 20.22 17.31
‘There is no reason to be bailing out Middle Eastern overproduction’: Analysts break down how to prevent further oil price volatility, Markets Insider, 25 April 2020 – Brent:
Date, Closing Price, Open, Daily High, Daily Low
05/05/2020 30.97 28.10 32.06 27.77
05/04/2020 27.20 26.10 28.08 25.50
05/01/2020 26.44 26.95 27.88 25.76
04/30/2020 25.27 22.87 25.76 22.87
04/29/2020 22.54 20.66 23.88 20.53
04/29/2020 22.54 20.66 23.88 20.53
04/28/2020 20.46 19.90 21.29 18.73
04/27/2020 19.99 21.55 21.91 19.11
04/24/2020 21.44 21.93 22.70 20.50
04/23/2020 21.33 20.89 23.22 20.07
04/22/2020 20.37 20.23 22.45 15.98
04/21/2020 19.33 26.33 26.50 17.51
04/20/2020 25.57 28.05 28.25 25.37
“Brent crude oil is at its lowest level in 17 years.. The US exports roughly 4 million barrels of oil per day, but much of that outflow will fade as Saudi Arabia and Russia undercut US pricing. Mizuho [Securities]’s analysis pegs the US’s spare capacity at 273 million barrels and estimates the tanks could top out in as soon as four months.. negative prices could become a reality if the US can’t build new storage at the pace of its inventory buildup.. The oil-price war kicked off March 6, when Russia declined to lower production. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries had hoped to curb supply as the coronavirus outbreak pummeled oil demand around the world. Russia’s move prompted retaliation from Saudi Arabia in the form of massive price cuts, igniting a race to claw more market share” The oil market’s threats combine 9/11 with the financial crisis – and could turn prices negative, analyst says, Markets Insider, 18 March 2020.
“U.S. market history points to a final bottom in August” Stocks will revisit their coronavirus crash low, and here’s when to expect it, MarketWatch, 11 April 2020.
“We have clearly gone to full scale day-to-day market management crisis, and as we said when we first called for negative prices, the physical reality of oil is that it is difficult to handle, volatile, potentially polluting, and actually useless without a refinery. If you had a stinking barrel of oil in your backyard, would you pay someone $100/bbl to take it away? Yes, and you would probably be relieved you were not charged $300/bbl,” Oil could hit negative $100 per barrel next month, according to one analyst, Markets Insider, 22 April 2020.
“The U.S. Energy Information Administration reported last Wednesday that U.S. crude inventories rose 15 million barrels for the week ended April 17 to 518.6 million barrels. That marked a 13th straight weekly climb and followed a record weekly increase of 19.2 million barrels a week earlier.. January 2021 CLG21 contract trading near $29.37 on Monday or still well below the $54 per barrel levels of mid-February that already were viewed as a threat to the viability of some weaker players” Here’s why oil majors may struggle to find bargains in the shale patch, MarketWatch, 27 April 2020.
“The United States Oil Fund (USO) that was responsible for last Monday’s oil crash into negative territory is once again shaking up oil markets, and WTI is now down more than 21% on the day. The USO Fund’s administration, USCF, announced on Monday that it intends to sell off all of its WTI contracts for June delivery—that’s all its front-month contracts that the fund was designed to invest in. Instead, the fund will now focus on futures contracts that are further out. The USO’s breakdown will now be comprised of 30% in the July contract, 15% each in the August, September, October, and December contracts, and 10% in the June 2021 contract. The June 2020 contract fell $3.85 on Monday to $13.09 by 3:52 p.m. EDT. Meanwhile, the July contract is trading $5 higher, and the August contract $8 higher at $21.47. The last time the USO fund shook up the oil market was one week ago today, the last day before the May 2020 futures contract for WTI expired. What set the disastrous events in motion was traders wishing to exit their positions before the contract expired. The USO, which would be unable to accept delivery of physical barrels of oil, headed for the exit, but found few willing buyers. This time around, the USO fund is pulling out of all its near-term contracts over the course of the next few days, sending oil prices reeling once again. The shift away from front-month contracts will amount to dumping 20% of its $3.6 billion portfolio over the next few days, Financial Times reports, citing a regulatory filing by USO.” World’s Largest Oil Fund Is Once Again Crashing Crude Markets, OilPrice.com, 27 April 2020.

Kia ora koutou, hello friends,

It is a humble honour to announce my nomination to run for Environment Canterbury again, this year, with CommunityVoice.NZ – thank you to my nominators.

There is a huge amount to be said around the environmental needs of Canterbury today. So we are starting with a Zero-waste campaign. If you can help with a 100%-recycled-billboard site, please get in contact here.

Current controversy around waste management includes the Fox River cleanup, Hokitika foreshore (West Coast erosion issues faced by climate change), and:

Waste-to-energy plant proposal fails to wow West Coast town’s residents Stuff, 26 Jul & Waste-to-energy plant contractor under investigation for baled waste in Christchurch 16 Aug & Group fighting West Coast waste-to-energy plant has blunt message: ‘Don’t bother’ 20 Aug, while Breakthrough technology destined for New Zealand promising to help reverse plastic waste crisis TV1, 31 Aug 2019

This page will be further added to over time. Candidate profile is here and here. Your vote of support – for sound action to keep oceans clean, to mitigate global climate change and protect Canterbury’s pure water – would be much appreciated.

Half the Environment Canterbury council is standing again Stuff, 16 Aug 2019

This is an important election for Canterbury region, with a deficit of continuity to fill. Building a bridge between rural and urban sectors to progress our whenua through challenging times (looming recession, climate, water quality and quantity, iwi and community relations, biodiversity loss, transport planning, natural and biological hazards, etc.) but also between public democracy and the talented staff who extract the science and keep the lights on. Your thoughtful involvement has influence here. To see the list of ECan candidates and discover who is standing in your area, look at http://www.electionz.com/LGENominations/EL5262EC_candidates.htm For relating names to places, the constituency maps (of city council ward groups) are here https://www.ecan.govt.nz/about-us/your-council/elections/ To confirm your ability to vote, check with https://vote.nz/enrol-to-vote/enrol-check-or-update/contact-your-local-registrar-of-electors/ Thank you for your attention to Canterbury well-being.

Remembering each iconic step along the way to environmental consciousness:

Rachel Carson, Silent Spring

[draft index, more links to come..]

Kia ora. Kia kaha. Waimarie.

Update 15-10-19
Thanks everyone for your support. Campaign unsuccessful though.
As I tidy up and prepare to move on for a next phase in life, here are some background discussion threads to be kept track of:

Passing the baton to highlight climate change – Otago Daily Times, 22 Apr 2008
ECan CDEM climate etc meltdown – The Press, 26 Aug 2009
RNZ, ECan, the pot and the kettle – pundit Claire Browning, 15 Mar 2010
Some quake news reports – 8 posts by 5 authors, e-democracy Canterbury Issues, 9 Sep 2010
How the Christchurch locals have gathered together to support each other – MAGIC MUSIC, 16 Feb 2017 + CREST and the Fire – Cashmere Connection, May 2017, p.5
These are the climate angels & deniers standing in our local elections – The Spinoff, 21 Sep 2019

Cast ye not the first stone, lest it become avalanche — Gospel of John, chapter 8, verses 3–7.*

Reverend Purdie, Cashmere Presbyterian Church, October 2018

Reverend Purdie, Cashmere Presbyterian Church, October 2018

2018 is the year, five years after it began, that the Cashmere Residents’ Emergency Support Team (CREST) got taken down. For repair, we’d hope. Though that is uncertain. Bringing certainty will be wresting the great weight, of false witness heaped upon CREST, off of it. Stone by stone, traced back to the throwing hand, demanding withdrawal, exposing rich hypocrisy.

In February, the new business manager at Cashmere Presbyterian chose to crush CREST (a local community volunteer initiative, invited within church walls) to rob CREST role and finances, instead of collaborating through it – as had been the previous minister’s clear promise. This action was downright nasty, largely fraudulent.

The new minister chose not to support the CREST Red Cross project and community lunch event, as led by the Cashmere Residents’ Association (CRA), wanting leadership of community response direct from the church instead. This action reveals fraudulent deceit. It kicked CRA initiative out. It took advantage, to profit from several years’ honest, hard volunteer work at this ‘community hub’. And it first had to destroy its trusting partner: broad, stable, good open leadership at the CRA.

Despite having been part of deciding the 18 February public event date and supporting council permit application, Reverend Silvia Purdie turned around to attack the CREST coordination, with venom, to get at the funds. No negotiation would be entertained on the high price Purdie wanted for church help with the catering and hosting: wholly inappropriate as it was a budgeted CRA activity booked with the church. But hungry eyes were set on a prize. If CREST coordination stood between Purdie and use of the CRA-raised Red Cross funds, then CREST coordination would have to go – which Purdie precipitated with aggressive and false accusations of project impropriety.

Further self-interest dove-tailed into Purdie’s, each enabling the other.

The CRA old guard had undeclared axes to grind. They had previously volunteered then fallen out with the church, over an heritage issue and where their works record was weak. Vengeance was nigh and CREST became instant brunt of it. Aggressive accusations of project impropriety were repeated, though later disproved, to deprive the church of resilience infrastructure investment. Merge of conflicted interests this way, robbing good community service cruelly, exposed the CRA old guard as blindly corrupt: narrowly venal; a sad Purdie match. The CRA funding oversight of CREST was rapidly shut down.

Against these great odds, the CRA-CREST 18 Feb 2018 preparedness exercise event carried through – though savagely and needlessly compromised in scale of outcomes (e.g. our community was forced off ‘our space’ – Cashmere Green – and onto church land, making cause for criticism): facebook.com/events/183405702246003/permalink/192092061377367

180218 would-be-CREST community lunch

180218 would-be-CREST community lunch


CRA-CREST 180218 community lunch event poster

CRA-CREST 180218 community lunch event poster


The agendas to destroy CREST, or CRA leadership of it at the church, within Cashmere community, were only just gathering steam. Division and heat would only grow. These are not finished yet.

At stake is potentially increased official support, for community activity in the area, which is generally very tied up: captured and unavailable, in fact.

And so it was when ‘Cashmere was compensated’, eight month’s later, through council funding of Purdie to run the “Cashmere Carnival” – in the space and with the permit that Purdie had denied to CREST (to line herself up for new event funds, eight months later).

Funny, that. It confirms the adage that ‘money will only be spent in Cashmere if it is spent on promoting the Labour Party’. And so it was on 28 October, when all the area Labour politicians rolled out. Smiling and laughing, enjoying the big joke – upon Cashmere itself. Making a very clear point: that Cashmere would be done to, and never doing on its own, ‘ad infinitum’.

'Cashmere' Carnivàle 281018

‘Cashmere’ Carnivàle 281018

For this was a turn out of Presbyterian parishioners, mostly, from the wider south city and not locals. The church was actually proud of this, that it (by Dr David Troughton) could run up the CREST banner, on this occasion, with no real input from Cashmere residents’ organising at all. The coup to shed CRA, from its CREST planning property, work and opportunity, was well underway.

The dirty Labour-Presbyterian council link to undermine residents is confirmed in the Purdie-Clearwater joy, at placing themselves at the heart of faux Cashmere, on 28/10/18: IMG_20181028_142438-crop4

Faux Cashmere Carnival 281018

Faux Cashmere Carnival 281018


It is astounding, the sheer waste of resource pumped into this two-hour ‘public’ jaunt, to only make the point of ‘who’s in charge’ of all Cashmere community funded project space, to ‘ice the cake’ of Cashmere-CREST independence demolition. Appalling. In great need of being exposed.
Faux Cashmere Carnival 281018

Two-hour, faux Cashmere Carnival, 281018


Rev. Purdie enjoys the splash of rate-payer cash, yet behind it, the Labour Melanie Coker face still 'smells a rat'

Rev. Purdie enjoys the splash of rate-payer cash, yet behind it, the Labour Melanie Coker face still ‘smells a rat’.


Also sighted present on 28/10/18, at this rates-funded jolly, was Labour Port Hills MP Ruth Dyson.

Error in Cashmere Fire Report, re 15.02.17: “Leona described to me how she sat at her window all night, watching trees burst into flame in the valley above Princess Margaret Hospital” – facebook.com/1434260603455144/posts/cashmere-fire-reportfrom-silvia-purdie-minister-cashmere-presbyterian-church-chr/1847315355482998/ – Fire was on Worsleys Spur, above Cracroft Valley, nowhere near Princess Margaret Hospital. And the message – “today, after the fire, our church will care for our people, be there for others. We’re part of a good network and response systems. I’m thinking a community BarBQ would be good. But there’s not really much we can do” – casts intentional slight upon CREST, which did activate its response hub at the church that next day, on 16.02.17 around control of the fire, lost homes, evacuations and very worried uncertainty. This attack upon CREST follows that from Mrs Purdie’s first arrival at her church post, when she moved CREST’s small store of equipment from its designated place at the church, showing contempt of clear labelling not to move it, and a $50 item (the CREST banner spike) has been missing since that time. Unresolved angst? A hazard in itself. So one year later, rotten Labour-Presbyterian take-down of CRA-CREST began in earnest; in events detailed above.

No CREST partners that had committed to 18.02.18 Red Cross exercise event saw it through – not the church, nor the school, nor CRA committee, and Rotary were inactive with us then. So CREST could not activate as designed to, though volunteers committed to CREST were fully capable of carrying event response to success – with new Business Association invited help. It is strategic lying to say CREST could function normally from that time on until now (this is yet unresolved). Repairing the CRA-Presbyterian relationship is very first order, for CREST to be able to continue authentically. Anything moved without that is plain deceit.

Bellowing Clearwater misinformation for Labour is: https://hail.to/cashmere-primary-te-pae-kereru/publication/EIr27V2/article/Q44WTff – where all partner parties absented from agreed CREST 180218 event, so have no valid vote for bringing such fake news about. Simply dangerous.

CREST is formally suspended, for safety and repair, as it must be – see COMMUNITY NOTICES.

If people knew that, in approaching a church, there was risk of being beaten up and robbed, they really would not go there. This has been the Cashmere residents’ group experience, to learn from.

To recap, Reverend Purdie made a grab for the maximum possible Red Cross CREST generator and water tank fund amount, to be diverted into her church consolidated fund to run a public event, contrary to the facts that CRA had raised the fund to run the event and all the related items were strictly budgeted. The concluding, reporting-to-community event, was not the main purpose – as the minister insisted it be. So Purdie attacked the Red Cross project coordinator, to undermine it all and ultimately stop the generator and water tank purchases from being completed. Shame!!!

From this whiff of funding, some church leaders now push to complete Mrs Purdie’s attack upon the residents’ leadership of CREST, for travelling on without us. But significant investment has already been made there, and this grab falls far beside the point – of serving Cashmere residents, in readiness. Of being able to connect Cashmere residents, in our own interest, in an emergency, without dirty politics.

CREST had formed at the church in 2013 because: a. the door was open; b. an inviting Community Centre sign stood outside; c. Christchurch city council (Cr Clearwater) had refused Cashmere its own community centre, at the time of Cashmere Masonic Lodge building sale; d. conversations had been taking place about a community response hub in the church facility, since its 2009 upgrade, between its managers and city council CDEM**; and e. because of interest in preparedness by CRA members post-earthquakes, that moved to utilise the opportunity of meeting space to organise CREST and start the Cashmere response planning. CREST, through overwhelming failure of institutional support on 18.2.2018 plan exercise day, has had to be withdrawn from service – temporarily? Reverend Purdie caused that, with equally destructive help:

Cashmere Residents’ Association (CRA)
Note, uploaded reports to Companies Office (search # 697181): CRA Financial Report AGM 2017 and CRA Financial Report 31 Feb 2018 – “I / we Leona Murahidy (Secretary) certify that the annual statement attached has been approved by the members of a general meeting held on 21st day of March 2018 for 2017.” – As with the dates referenced, and the disappeared $9,312.50 CREST Red Cross project balance revealed in comparison here, everything about Murahidy ‘management’ in Cashmere is fictional. Unaccountable. Too often dishonest. Of extreme harm.

23 May 2018, a CRA Special General Meeting did happen, that had capacity to make the above declaration true. But before that, on 21 March, a closed and domesticated ‘committee’ meeting would have taken place. This (basically illegal) role confusion sums up the huge liability Leona Murahidy is to Cashmere community organising. Devastation of constructive and viable systems lay in its wake. The year has mostly been a write-off, due to this. Someone, our community, has to bring the CRA back on track. Or suspend it, for safety and regrouping, adding vision for change.

The October 2018 CRA AGM put this committee on a very short leash, until February 2019. Officer written reports were read but not given out or made public yet. Read an AGM review here. CRA has run outside of its Constitution all year – by Associate member illegal votes, etc. etc.

Ms Murahidy and family/cohorts are running a private club – in the name of Cashmere Residents’ Association – to further very particular, less than community, interests. When a CRA committee member pointed out that the 2017 financial report needed to be uploaded to the Companies Office, but after membership endorsement through a Special General Meeting therefore due, the response was instant and unconstitutional expulsion – and then the false financial reporting. Completely sackable offences by Murahidy and crew; looking prosecutable. – Not a transparent organisation or responsibly open to all as it should be: true victim of Murahidy-Labour ‘activism’.

Summary
The link between all points of wreckage done to Cashmere and its sound resilience program (up until this year) is that of Labour affiliation or alliance by the above main actors. No question. These are public figures who have generated an absolute shambles out of nothing, to advance their own Labour-loyalist grubby career agendas. Performances have been corrupt. Caustically jealous and vengeful. Acquisitive.

The above incidents speak to the lengths that the Labour Party network will go, to manipulate communities, to assert outright authority over them, and to waste any measure of good value in building up social hegemony this way.

There must be political neutrality for good community organising to thrive. Cashmere, its Residents’ Association and Emergency Support Team, to succeed, must claim this back through thoughtful shared action. It is to our collective loss and significant risk otherwise.

Kia kaha

* N.B. Those deep in religion do not understand religion.

** CDEM = Civil Defence Emergency Management
e.g. see Nationwide test of Emergency Mobile Alert 25 November 2018.

If the Labour Party is not elected to govern New Zealand today, it is because people want something different. ‘National light’ does not suffice. Those supporting National, or not supporting Labour, pay attention to ‘alternative facts’ and political spin. Bending the truth is significant about power, and Labour knows it. They have rebutted it, in the tax debate of September 2017, shining the torch away from their own record. Labour claimed much success, in the local elections of 2016, as evidence of a strong party ready to rise. From this they have gone on to pose as water-quality champions, by eliminating competition in that field. So let’s take a look at what they now propose to build upon in this area, veracity-wise.

Generation Zero rorting of polls in support of Labour-backed candidates is seen more and more every election, as economic crisis deepens, exemplified by the voter-defrauding chart produced here:


From GenZero’s http://www.localelections.nz/christchurch/environment-canterbury/ of 2016. – How is B+A=A higher than A+A=A, except as intentional lying? – ECan-paid contractor Pham then promoted candidate Pauling and split the vote for fourth place in Christchurch, allowing another already on the ECan payroll – Lowndes, zone committee chair – to secure it and become councillor. Lowndes broke election law by using an ECan logo on his campaign website, unrestrained. These were the Labour-backed candidates, professionally squeezing out grass-roots representation, slipping eyes past Labour’s high-pollution record and thoroughly foul conflicts of interest.

This was payback for 2007, when Save Our Water helped expose a Labour ECan councillor being paid to facilitate meetings for Central Plains Water, who then lost his seat. Ngai Tahu Iwi – intending corporate irrigator – lost its Labour seat at the same time (until National put it back, in May 2010).

The same kind of dodgy rort by the same group was seen three years earlier, when they rated the Labour-based mayoral candidate, Lianne Dalziel, higher for carbon-friendly policies despite these being practically identical to at least one other candidate at the time. This was to completely ignore (and hide) Dalziel’s role in Helen Clark’s Labour government, that had heavily developed dairying, irrigation and greenhouse gas emissions in Canterbury during its decade in power. Generation Zero are thus exposed as intellectual and methodological frauds, ingratiating to relative power. Generation Zero are thus, in effect, corruptly right-wing too – just like the ‘me first’ Labour significant cult of the leader.

Generation Zero -Christchurch mayoral candidate evaluations -Oct13

Generation Zero – Christchurch mayoral candidate evaluations – October 2013

Dig into the Generation Zero fraud and what you find is, it is about attempting bigger fraud – that (consumer) transport emissions are ‘more important’ than industrial (agriculture, in New Zealand) emissions, that urban issues outweigh rural, that Auckland perspective will dominate the south. Of course Labour would want its apologists to say this, that (Auckland) city transport issues outweigh rural production – it is about shifting blame (and complete in-electability on this issue) off of Labour!

Generation Zero are understood and defined as a “public transport lobby group” by national news media (One News e.g.) out of Auckland influence – subordinating southern regional politics (of agricultural emissions reduction) to their own concern (urban transport planning). In 2017, new Labour then falsely took ownership of the water quality movement, with questionable policy proposals (tax water takes to fund river clean-up work, rather than transform the entire industry).

The ‘Generation Zero’ claim to be concerned for emissions reduction, to halt climate change, is belied by their actions. Totally. When they have the chance to stand against the National government, by endorsing the battle Save Our Water has brought to them since 2007, they walk away; they side with National’s decision to cut environmental democracy, that Save Our Water had represented for voters to Environment Canterbury (ECan). Instead, as the 2016 candidate rating chart shows, the Zeros back an ECan-paid consultant (staff) to replace public representation as somehow more suitable democratic voice – http://www.workingwaterstrust.org/who-are-we-.html director Pham. Professional resource-grabs – never public wishes – are what the Zeros are about. Their intervention is to eliminate emission-reduction proposals that Save Our Water has worked a decade for, from all decision debate. Generation Zero thus, by inter-dependency with reactionary Labour candidates, take climate action backwards!

Generation Fraud is what this is all really about: removing options and debate about resource conservation for the future generations, boiling everything down into the corporate one-or-two party choice; selling out the options of their own generation, by covering up Labour’s misuse of power, in reality. That is a offensively corrupt.

Right-wing frauds. If you are going to vote support for any of these people in September 2017, do so with your eyes wide open! The public elects representation on its own terms, not those of master manipulators.

View at Medium.com

Confirmed as divisive nonsense, through cover-ups by Labour Party adjuncts to corruptly nose them ahead in New Zealand elections, is that different generations of humans have separate material interests. Nothing could be more false. By fostering dishonesty, after their own style and career interests, New Zealand Labour does youth a massive disservice and so urgently needs to be exposed – to reduce the harm done by Labour influence immediately. Recruiting to their model corrupts and derails youth, against their own best interest, feeding the mental health crises. Over-emphasis on identity politics (anything for an extra vote) does this – distortion.

From this exposure of Labour deceit, political education can then progress, freed of the obfuscating market sleights imposed over decades by generations of corrupted Labour bureaucrats – for the sake of power.

The central, repetitive pitch of Labour leader Jacinda Adern in the TV1 main party leaders’ debate of 31-08-17, was that her generation lacked access to housing – given its inflated price relative to wages. While thin on detail over how they’d actual change this, and hiding the fact that years of Labour administration had only increased the disparity (from which multiple-home-owning Labour politicians always profit), housing security is an issue for every generation now. Vague dog-whistling, to gather attention for shifting power, is not an actual solution.

The destructive influence of Labour on youth wellbeing at community level has been further documented here:

https://riktindall.wordpress.com/2016/03/06/christchurch-south-youth-community-resilience-role-ccc-chch-preparedness-nz/ September 29, 2016 – Labour community board members killed off the proposal of a local youth council, to place Labour Youth members in charge of a dubious ‘Youth Community Board’ instead:
a. How totally corrupt!
b. What a sheer waste of wider democratic opportunity, for youth to become active in good local governance.

https://riktindall.wordpress.com/2016/10/14/nz-labour-just-lost-the-2017-election-nzlabour-christchurch-ecan-newzealand-water-nzpol-knzb-ccc/ October 14, 2016 – Labour lost the 2017 election one year earlier

The very worst of it is – beyond Labour’s corruption of aspiring youth to its evil gangster methods – is Labour corruption of local government staff in cementing its influence. They even go so far as having these staff falsify public records – community board minutes – to boost the optics of Labour effectiveness to the maximum level possible.

A Corrupt City Council, being CCC, is the shocking result: that the public can no longer trust its paid ‘servants’, under Labour instruction.

Labour in governance will do nothing except what enhances their power and status – one toxic, self-congratulating, self-promoting machine.

‘Dirty politics’ are not something different because they are Labour’s. A lot of warping effort, to disguise their record, for claiming agency over water quality standards. Theirs has been as great a contribution to pollution when in power, so they habitually lie to obscure this.

Substance before style, wins the day.
24.09.17 – The touted youthquake did not eventuate because, with opaque Labour self-interest, youth are neither silly nor blind: they knew they were being manipulated and not so many complied.

Jesinda at work?

Jesinda at work? – source: Darrien Fenton facebook

Democracy, warts and all. Backwards is worse. Explore ways to improve it. Have the vision – what is the route to survival for all? DJTrump/KJIll are rolling out the opposite direction … Frightening. So, what is the all-inclusive, sustainable development solution? Find it. Sell it. Win hearts to progress. (100% support would be the miracle)

[page under edit]

Invasion of the robot workers “Why aren’t the young in revolt? Why aren’t they out on the street biffing things? Perhaps they are about to.” July 12 2017
https://www.stuff.co.nz/technology/digital-living/94580089/invasion-of-the-robot-workers

Vernon Small: Labour may have tacked too close to National to spark voter ardour
https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/opinion/94641918/vernon-small-labour-may-have-tacked-too-close-to-national-to-spark-voter-ardour July 13 2017

“New ways of utilising our land for economic gain that also have lower environmental footprints need to be found and adopted if we are to meet the vision New Zealanders have for their fresh waters.” http://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/91418638/top-scientist-fixing-freshwater-issues-an-enormous-challenge

NZ election 2017: Going beyond environmental slogans
https://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/95984894/nz-election-2017-going-beyond-environmental-slogans August 28 2017

Editorial: Water issues have boiled over
https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/opinion/97044279/editorial-water-issues-have-boiled-over September 21 2017

POLITICAL ROUNDUP, Dr Bryce Edwards: Get ready for a Labour-NZ First government
https://www.nbr.co.nz/opinion/get-ready-labour-nz-first-government September 25 2017

https://www.facebook.com/rik.tindall/posts/10214991416085885 “The left, including New Zealand’s, can make no progress until it starts to understand that Labour is a right-wing party…” September 25 2017

Systemic failure in New Zealand emergency response is confirmed by repeat avoidable tragedies in Christchurch, unmitigated disasters under National-led government. Full responsibility lies with them and with everyone who has been selfishly and ignorantly voting support for corrupt sheer incompetence in central and local government: a regional despoliation shared between greedy empire-builders of Beehive and town hall.

With an eye – they happily admitted at the time – only for increased irrigation water for dairy profits from Canterbury, John Key, Gerry Brownlee and Bill English – backed by Christchurch and Canterbury mayors – have completely dropped the ball in every aspect of good governance in the region, since they destroyed its democratically elected council in April 2010.

Since then, because of this, many people have been unnecessarily dying due to the fragmentation of effective civil defence that the central and district governments have collectively caused. That is abysmal and completely unacceptable performance. Heads must roll. Starting today. For public safety.

The lazy, corrupt, ignorant incompetence that characterises New Zealand government has to stop: it is deadly at fault. The same confused fire-cordon-and-response failings that cost lives in the levelled Canterbury Television building on 22-23 February 2011 re-appeared on 14 February 2017 in the Port Hills fires.[1] The failing is in leadership and co-ordination, not that of hands-on responders: a communication and collaboration failure in the back office, from the top down. It is a man-made sabotage of effective regional response that John Key et. al. never imagined was going to be needed or could bite them so very, very hard. Now it very much has. The pattern of functional decay is thoroughly exposed.

News media could stop deflecting attention away from National’s gross mis-leadership and culpable manslaughters in Canterbury. Or remain accessories. Stop promoting self-advancing, opportunist and incompetent mayors.

Ask how the CTV building fire cordon was managed in February 2011. Was it effective in Police hands, as prescribed by an emergency site that had fatality? Or were fire crews excessively stretched without backup, then investigated as blameworthy? Were the fire responders made scapegoats, then and in February 2017?

Ask especially what action council took to check building safety and to cordon off hazards after 4 September 2010. None was apparent as a loud sigh of relief led into an ill-fated Boxing Day Sale, to satisfy city retailers, instead. Criminal negligence and liability rests here and instead we see knighthood reported? Not good enough by far.

Without remedial action at the governance level, New Zealand’s coming grand disaster – the Alpine Fault movement and its follow-ons – will only be all the more lethally tragic. Proposals to centralise emergency response are to save who time instead of getting on an aeroplane? And what happens then when Wellington gets badly hit? No confidence, at all, as it is unearned yet.

Tweet summary: #Canterbury regional bungle #ECan #CDEM
National Party implicated in #CTV + #Sugarloaf avoidable deaths With districts

Action summary: What public safety requires most, without delay, is –
all communities developing skills and means to organise, represent and keep themselves safe,
National out of central government,
Labour out of local government
– monopolies are never, ever healthy or helpful.

Event overview: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2017_Port_Hills_fires

Timeline:

Monday 13 February 2017
c4:30pm Fire broke out in Lansdowne Valley, Selwyn District, spreading rapidly.
c7pm Fire broke out on Marley’s Hill to the north, in the Christchurch City Council area.

Marleys-Lansdowne fires c9pm 130217

Marley’s Hill fire as seen from the south, above the spreading Lansdowne fire, c9pm 13 Feb 2017, in warm west wind

Scrub fire breaks out in Christchurch
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/scrub-fire-breaks-out-in-christchurch.html

Two fires on Christchurch’s Port Hills stretch fire crews, destroys house, force evacuations
“Fire Service spokeswoman Lyn Crosson.. said an area of 400 by 400 square metres was burning at Summit Rd near Marley’s Hill. At 10pm, Crosson said the fire was still burning uncontained and residents on Summit and Worsleys roads were being evacuated. ‘Crews are currently working to prevent it jumping Summit Rd,’ she said. ‘Summit Rd will remain closed for the night.'”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/89372687/large-christchurch-scrub-fire-out-of-control-second-fire-now-burning

Tuesday 14 February 2017
Not enough was done from dawn, by far, while confused officials argued jurisdiction.
Evacuation set #1 of 3 was ignored – emergency not declared, despite it already spanning two populated districts in very dry weather.

Marley's Hill 14 Feb 2017

Marley’s Hill on 14 Feb 2017, view from the north, Lansdowne smoke to the south, warm west wind continues

SDC-1. Tai Tapu/Port Hills fires – update 10.30am “Two fires are continuing to burn this morning in the Tai Tapu/Port Hills area – one in the vicinity of Early Valley Road/Lansdowne, and the other in the Marley Hill area near the Summit Road. The fires cover an area of around 700 hectares. Fire status The Early Valley Road fire started yesterday evening at around 6pm. It has since crossed Summit Road around the Kennedy’s Bush area and at some other points. It is principally being fought by air with support from ground crews. Today crews will focus on protecting structures and controlling the fire, and protecting Kennedy’s Bush. The Marley Hill fire started in a car park around 7pm last night and spread west along the Summit Road area overnight. Protection of structures and the Christchurch Adventure Park and are also a focus for fire fighting. Both fires are now being managed by one Emergency Operations Centre based at Selwyn District Council’s Rolleston Headquarters as well as on site control points… Around 24 properties were evacuated last night with evacuations remaining in place currently. Tai Tapu School was opened last night to receive evacuees but closed last night with all evacuees staying with friends and family except for one family who accommodation was arranged for. No further evacuations are anticipated to be needed currently. One house has been confirmed destroyed by the fire, with a structure destroyed and one other house slightly damaged. All affected structures are in the Lansdowne area” http://www.selwyn.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0007/216187/Port-Hills-fire-update-10.pdf

Port Hills fires: Photos from inside the cordon – Selwyn Rural Fire response
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/port-hills-fire-photos-from-inside-the-cordon/

Below Marley Hill, by mid-afternoon 15.02.17, smokes billows phenomenally

Below Marley Hill, by mid-afternoon 15.02.17, smokes billows phenomenally with new flames, wind had just turned dry-easterly

Two fires rage on the Port Hills as one enters the Christchurch Adventure Park “fire retardant had been air-dropped on the top station earlier in the day. Selwyn District Council principal rural fire officer Douglas Marshall said the fire was ‘crawling through the under-matter at the bottom of the trees’ at the top of the park, and that fire crews weren’t too concerned about it causing a problem at this stage. A nearby crew is monitoring the situation. Firefighters earlier said two huge blazes in Christchurch’s Port Hills were now contained, although the battle to put them out was continuing. … The Selwyn District Council said the Marley Hill fire appeared to be largely contained on the city side of Summit Rd by 3pm. … Operations have slowed down for the night. Marshall said there was one crew monitoring the Marley Hill fire and three watching the one at Early Valley overnight. He was expecting it to be a quiet night as there was not much wind. … Twenty-four homes had to be evacuated overnight, and a group of children were among those rescued on Monday after becoming stuck near one of the fires. Selwyn principal rural fire officer Douglas Marshall said 11 helicopters and nearly 120 firefighters were working to contain the fires on Tuesday, and could be needed for another two or three days. Three two-member firefighting crews from the New Zealand Army had also been dispatched to help. ‘The second fire … [at Marleys Hill] is working around the radio mast that’s up in that area. It’s currently working down a ridge it’s probably the top end of the [Christchurch] Adventure Park area,’ Marshall said. ‘It’s not contained. It’s still burning quite strong. … A Fire Service spokesman said the Summit Rd fire had spread across 1.5 kilometres. The flames were too aggressive to battle in the dark, so firefighters working overnight concentrated on trying to stop it spreading further” http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89376043/Two-fires-rage-on-the-Port-Hills-as-one-enters-the-Christchurch-Adventure-Park

2.30pm Sugarloaf helicopter crash and pilot death. Flying halted temporarily, stakes raised greatly.

Helicopter pilot dies while fighting Christchurch wild fires “Douglas Marshall, principal rural fire authority officer at the Selwyn District Council, said the accident was a tragedy. ‘Firefighting is difficult and dangerous work … our thoughts are with the deceased [person’s] family at this time.’ He said it was possible a number of pilots involved in helping to douse flames would want to stand down following the accident, and authorities were respecting that decision. In a statement, Selwyn District Emergency Management said the Marley Hill fire remains contained, although ground crews are monitoring activity along the Summit Rd. The other fire at Early Valley is also contained, but there are some spots of fire burning downhill from the ridgeline above Governors Bay and Allandale. Helicopters will continue to operate until nightfall tonight and from first light tomorrow. The area of both fires combined as estimated at about 580ha.”
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11800525

SDC-2. Tai Tapu/Port Hills fires – update 3pm “The Marley Hill fire appears to be largely contained on the city side of the Summit Road. Parts of the Early Valley Road fire have crossed the Summit Road towards Governors Bay. Current activity across both fires is focused on efforts to protect structures and prevent the fire from spreading.” http://www.selwyn.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0008/216188/Port-Hills-fire-update-3pm-14-Feb.pdf
SDC-3. Tai Tapu/Port Hills fires – update 6.30pm “The current situation with the fires are that the Marley Hill Fire remains contained, although ground crews are monitoring activity along the Summit Road. Significant effort put into the Early Valley fire today has resulted in it being effectively contained, although there are some spots of fire burning downhill from the ridgeline above Governors Bay and Allandale. The New Zealand Fire Service is undertaking active structure protection in this area. Helicopters will continue to operate until nightfall tonight and from first light tomorrow. No further structures have been lost beyond those reported earlier.” http://www.selwyn.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0009/216189/PORT-HILLS-FIRES-6pm-update-14-Feb.pdf

Wednesday 15 February 2017
Governors Bay evacuations overnight by Civil Defence; that fire contained, residents returned.
Evacuation #2 of 3 was ignored – emergency not declared.
Smoke then fire broke out in a big way in the Cashmere Valley and Port Hills south-west of Christchurch city.
Chaos had been unleashed which led to panic, mass evacuations, misinformation and terrible overnight fear.
Evacuation #3, widespread in panic and south-west Port Hills areas affected, was acted upon:
6pm A local emergency was declared jointly by the Selwyn and Christchurch mayors.

Port Hills Fires, Christchurch, Feb 15th 2017 – YouTube time-lapses, Dru Norriss

Port Hills fires: Live updates – extract
“1:00am Marley’s Hill fire escalates, as fire spreads downhill through the forest.. within 150m of Sign of the Kiwi
3:00am 700 Governors Bay and Allandale residents evacuated. Governors Bay School which is closed today
5:00am Fire seen close to the chair lift at the Christchurch Adventure Park
7:00am City council activates the Emergency Operations Centre to coordinate the welfare operation
8:00am Helicopters are filling up monsoon buckets in the Heathcote River, corner of Hoon Hay Valley Rd and Cashmere Rd
9:00am –We’ve broken its back’: Governors Bay chief fire officer Andrew Norris
9.09am Health warning over smoke
9.27am Helicopters are using water from ponds and dams on farms in the Lansdowne area to fill monsoon buckets to fight the Early Valley Rd fire. Two helicopters can be seen in the air above the fire and two others are refueling.
10.34am Conditions are fine and dry as firefighters continue to tackle fires on the Port Hills. MetService forecaster Cameron Coutts said winds were gentle, at about 17km/h, at the moment and had been blowing south west for some time. A north east change with 37km/h winds should hit the hills from about mid-afternoon, before dying down tonight
12:30pm Technicians are waiting to get access to transmitters that operate the city’s emergency services dispatch, including ambulance and police. Power was lost on Monday at the Marley Hill location and it is operating on batteries
1:56pm Power outages across the city
2:30pm: More fire service resources are being sent to the Christchurch Adventure Park, to assess if structures can be saved
3:00pm Victoria Park is being closed as thick smoke billows from the Christchurch Adventure Park
3:10pm Fire units are on their way to Worsleys Rd, Kennedy’s Bush, after reports houses are being threatened
3:15pm Fire crews are currently working to control a flare up in Worsleys Spur area in the vicinity of the Christchurch Adventure Park.
3:25pm Police are evacuating residents from homes on Worsleys Rd near Summit Rd. Three houses are under threat from the fire. A Cashmere resident described it as an ‘inferno’
3:31pm Helicopter resources are stretched and one is not available at the moment to drop water on the Christchurch Adventure Park
3:59pm Police have cordoned off Westmorland at Cashmere Rd and are urging people to prepare for an evacuation.
5:10pm Reports of residents being evacuated from the Cracroft area.
5:18pm Police have confirmed houses on Kennedys Bush Rd and its intersecting streets are being evacuated. Residents are heading to Pioneer Stadium
5:28pm Fire service has just issued a directive for all vehicles to get off Dyers Pass Rd
5:32pm Fire fighters say the blaze will ‘punch’ its way out of McVicars Plantation and hit the first corner of Dyers Pass Rd below the Sign of Kiwi before dark
6:00pm A command centre has been set up at the Sign of the Takahe
6:15pm The mayors of Christchurch and Selwyn have made a joint decision to declare states of emergency in the areas
6:22pm Fire fighters battling flames at the Christchurch Adventure Park only have about an hours worth of water left. Crews are scrambling to get more water to them
6:41pm There are unconfirmed reports that Pentre Tce, by the Sign of the Takahe, is being evacuated
6:50pm Cashmere Rd is now closed from Kaiwara St to Kennedys Bush Rd due to evacuations in Lower Cashmere, Cracroft, Westmorland and Kennedys Bush
9:39pm Fire fighters at the Sign of the Takahe cordon are telling residents above the landmark to leave their homes as the fire spreads, with reports it has moved into Victoria Park
9:44pm Canterbury Regional Controller Neville Reilly has been deployed to the Christchurch Civil Defence Emergency Operations Centre to head the overall response to the fires
9:55pm Authorities issue urgent evacuations: ‘Residents in the area from the Sign of the Takehe to Victoria Park should evacuate their homes immediately. Authorities are advising that the fire has crossed Dyers Pass Road into Victoria Park. Police and the Defence Force are evacuating properties in the area. We are also evacuating the south side of Cashmere Road to Kennedy’s Bush Road, and to Hoon Hay Valley Road'”
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/live-update-day/

SDC-4. Tai Tapu/Port Hills fires – update 10am “Overnight increased fire activity was reported around midnight in the area above Governors Bay. Multiple fire units were called in from around the region to assist in firefighting and protecting properties. At approximately 3am fire and police evacuated around 107 residents from the Allandale area near Governors Bay, due to the fire risk. The Christchurch City Council has activated an Emergency Operations Centre to coordinate the welfare operation which includes a welfare centre at the Governors Bay school.” http://www.selwyn.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0019/216190/Port-Hills-fires-update-10am-15-Feb.pdf
SDC-5. States of Emergency-declared in Christchurch and Selwyn “The Mayors of Christchurch City and Selwyn District have made a joint decision to declare States of Emergency in their respective areas in relation to the Port Hills fires. The declaration follows the evacuation this afternoon of 200-300 residents as the fire shifted closer to residential properties. It is no longer just a significant rural fire on the boundary of the city. It is now a city issue with suburbs being evacuated. Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel says a city response is also required to ensure the safety and welfare of residents… Selwyn District Mayor Sam Broughton says, ‘we acknowledge there has been a huge effort responding to the fire to date, however this declaration recognises the seriousness of the situation, and this will allow us to provide all the assistance necessary to respond to the unfolding situation. The district and the city must work together to manage the situation and address the different challenges the fire is creating in each area.'” http://www.selwyn.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0020/216191/States-of-Emergency-declared-CHCH-Selwyn-15-Feb.pdf
SDC-6. Port Hills/ Tai Tapu fire update: Residents should be prepared to evacuate – update 7.15pm “The Marley Hill fire has spread extensively down Worsley Spur, causing extensive vegetation burning in the Christchurch Adventure Park. The fire is approaching the residential area of Westmoreland.” http://www.selwyn.govt.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/216192/Port-Hills-fire-update-7.15pm-Wed-15-Feb.pdf

Port Hills fires: Some south west suburbs evacuate
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/westmorland-evacuate-as-fire-spreads/

Port Hills fire: Homes destroyed, more residents evacuating
http://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/news/emergency/more-evacuations-as-fire-rages-in-christchurchs-port-hills/

Homes destroyed, families evacuated as Christchurch fires spread “More than 1000 residents have fled their homes and at least eight properties have burned to the ground as a huge wild fire rages on in Christchurch. Terrified residents ran clutching precious belongings or bundled children into cars as the black smoke ballooned from the flames tearing through tinder dry scrub land. Several fires have now merged into one which is threatening dense residential housing. The blaze is estimated to have scorched more than 1850ha of land and is still growing. A state of emergency was declared in Christchurch and Selwyn, the Defence Force was deployed and health authorities issued warnings to vulnerable residents as black smoke drifted across the city. Civil Defence revised down the number of homes destroyed on Worsley Spur tonight to at least three after earlier issuing a statement saying 40 homes had been lost. A spokeswoman said the error was the result of misinformation being given to a rural fire officer and was revised following a ‘correction from the police on earlier information’. The incorrect figure was widely reported earlier tonight by media and made it into some copies of the morning Herald. Little information was available on how the error occurred but hard questions will no doubt be asked of authorities in the morning” http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11801058

Live: Fires continue to rage through Christchurch’s Port Hills
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/christchurch-helicopter-s-stood-down-from-firefighting.html

State of Emergency declared “Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel and Selwyn District Mayor Sam Broughton made a joint decision to declare the State of Emergency. It follows the evacuation of 200-300 residents as the fire shifted closer to residential properties in the south-west. Minister of Defence Gerry Brownlee has announced New Zealand Defence Force personnel have been asked to assist with fighting the fires. Ms Dalziel said a city response was also required to ensure the safety and welfare of residents. ‘Christchurch needs a multi-agency response given the seriousness of the situation. We need to be able to draw on all the resources possible to give our residents confidence in the ongoing response.’ Mr Broughton said: ‘We acknowledge there has been a huge effort responding to the fire to date, however this declaration recognises the seriousness of the situation, and this will allow us to provide all the assistance necessary to respond to the unfolding situation. The district and the city must work together to manage the situation and address the different challenges the fire is creating in each area.'” http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/state-of-emergency-declared-city/

Editorial: Why did it take so long to declare state of emergency? “The terrifying change on Wednesday afternoon, which saw the situation deteriorate rapidly, shows there can be no room for complacency or confusion among those in charge of dealing with the emergency… Civil Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee expressed frustration that a state of emergency was not declared earlier by the Selwyn District Council, the lead agency in fighting the fires, or the Christchurch City Council, within the boundaries of which much of the burning land is situated. The emergency was eventually declared on Wednesday evening when flames threatened city suburbs, then destroyed more houses and forced mass evacuations. It was obvious to anyone that the situation was getting worse not better, when the amount of smoke rising from the hills expanded enormously. Questions will now need to be asked whether the Selwyn Rural Fire Authority acted decisively enough and quickly enough, deploying all available resources. For instance, it seems that tankers, equipment and personnel had been on standby at Burnham Military Camp, but could not move, by law, while the army waited for a request from the civil authorities that was slow in coming. Criticism of emergency services at the height of a crisis is easy to make and often ill-advised. However, it is clear that there are lessons to be learned from this emergency, and the various authorities will need to take an honest and hard look at themselves when it is over… people deserve the best possible leadership, and bosses who will take timely and decisive action to make their task easier.”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/opinion/89454212/Editorial-Why-did-it-take-so-long-to-declare-state-of-emergency Comment RT – “Yes, it was the neutralisation of regional government by district and central government in cahoots, that left hills residents so dangerously out on a limb. Without that unseemly plot, collaboration and resources could have been swung in, through ECan CDEM services, from first light on the Tuesday to stop the fires cold. Shameful top-level performances, yet again: so ready to blame front-line fire-fighters, as at the CTV building collapse. Beyond shame, a deregulating City and Beehive are culpable!”

Port Hills on dark 150217

South Christchurch Port Hills, on dark, 15 Feb 2017 – Sugarloaf, Victoria Park and Worsleys Spur all fire-involved, left to right

Thursday 16 February 2017
After lower Sugarloaf had flared it soon went dark, with Victoria Park more flame-free overnight. But a day of downgraded hazard was needed for assurance that the fire was burning out up there, while it burnt on more strongly in the Adventure Park valley below and with the western fire areas more at risk under prevailing easterly wind conditions. A day of extended, thus exaggerated, panic pending better official reports from the fire fronts that were slow in coming – very formal conservatism characterises response from start to finish. ‘Safety first’.

Port Hills fires: Live updates – extract
“12.59am The Port Hill fires have now merged into one, developing significantly during the afternoon and into this evening. At least three additional houses have been destroyed in the area of Worsleys Rd
2am Six people from Pentworth Pl in Westmorland have been evacuated and are sleeping over at Te Hapua, which has been opened for evacuated residents, along with Nga Hau e Wha Marae. It appears most people that have been evacuated have found their own accommodation. In addition to rural fire staff, a group of 86 made up of 50 New Zealand Police and 36 New Zealand Defence Force personnel are working overnight on the Port Hills Fire response. They are doing evacuations, joint patrols and reassuring people in the areas impacted by the fires
3.25am There are still some very active fire fronts up on the Port Hills, but not as many as there were prior to midnight. A large number of fire crews have been on the ground working hard to protect properties overnight. A drop in fire activity can also be attributed to a decrease in temperature and a rise in humidity. Helicopters are expected to start an aerial attack at first light. Approximately 400 households have been evacuated in the areas around Victoria Park/Dyers Pass Road, Worsleys Rd, Westmorland and Kennedys Bush
4.55am Police are now evacuating residents downhill of the Sign of the Takahe on Dyers Pass Rd as far as and including Kiteroa Pl and Pentre Tce. Residents will be contact directly by police who are in the area now knocking on doors. If you feel unsafe, you are advised to self-evacuate. Police have continued to express concerns about traffic and people in the area and directed all non-residents to stay away, keeping it clear for emergency services
6.06am More than 1000 residents have fled their homes and at least eight properties have burned to the ground as a huge wild fire rages on in Christchurch. Several fires have now merged into one which is threatening dense residential housing. The blaze is estimated to have scorched more than 1850ha of land and is still growing.
6.24am The latest report is the fire has spread to the harbour side of Sugar Loaf. Evacuations are continuing on the Port Hills with a total of 450 properties officially evacuated. Others have self-evacuated as the fire spread overnight
6.44am Helicopter crews are starting to rejoin firefighting efforts. Aerial teams could be seen leaving the Christchurch Airport area at daybreak on Thursday
6.46am Civil Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee will arrive in Christchurch on Thursday morning. He has been critical of how long it took for a State of Emergency to be declared and questioned why rural firefighters were in charge of a fire inside the city boundaries.
6.55am Around 126 homes remain without power due to the fire
7.30am Broadcast provider Kordia has activated its disaster recovery plan as the fire engulfs land around Sugar Loaf. It has activated its disaster recovery plan and is transporting spare equipment to Christchurch
7.52am Military help for Christchurch is on standby – but hasn’t yet been asked for. Lieutenant Colonel Rob Loftus said almost 40 Defence Force personnel are on the ground so far. The Defence Force has been helping out with evacuations. Civil Defense minister Gerry Brownlee said it is up to the Fire Service to ask for further help – he is concerned they’ll leave it too late, Newstalk ZB reports
9:22am The Civil Defence bunker at Parliament is being activated
11.19am The impact of the fires on people is starting to be felt. Canterbury Civil Defence Controller John Mackie said they received a report of five incidents from health services. He said health and welfare services are also turning their attention to the psycho-social impact of the fires
11:32am More fire appliances are being called to the Christchurch Adventure Park to help battle the fire
12:12pm Firefighters in the Christchurch Adventure Park have setup monitoring stations at the base of the chairlift and cafe as a contingency plan
12:15pm Flames 6 to 8 metres tall are threatening a house at Kennedys Bush. Two fire crews are on the way
12.17pm Fire crews on Worsleys Rd have lost water pressure and are attempting to get it back
12.45pm Prime Minister Bill English and Gerry Brownlee are in the air surveying the fire scene
4:29pm Firefighters are calling for more water tankers up Kennedys Bush Rd to assist fighting the fire. They have asked for 4WD vehicle specifically. Firefighters have noticed another flare up
7:24pm Cordons remain in place with police and Defence Force staff patrolling
10:09pm ‘While there are still areas burning out of control, the fire is contained within the 2075 hectare area.'”
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/live-update-day/

From the archives: A tale of two boys
http://www.noted.co.nz/currently/profiles/from-the-archives-a-tale-of-two-boys/

Port Hills fire: 11 homes destroyed, 1000 people evacuated
http://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/news/emergency/port-hills-fire-800-people-evacuated-many-ordered-out-of-bed-overnight/

Christchurch Port Hills fires: What you need to know on Thursday
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89462014/christchurch-port-hills-fires-what-you-need-to-know

Watch: Christchurch wakes to a city ablaze
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/watch-christchurch-wakes-to-a-city-ablaze/

Map: The extent of the blaze
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/the-extent-of-the-blaze/

New video shows devastation at Christchurch Adventure Park
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/new-video-shows-devastation-at-christchurch-adventure-park.html

Mayors defend actions after Minister Brownlee criticism “The two mayors met with Brownlee today and afterward Dalziel defended the handling of the fire, saying she and Broughton had declared the state of emergency to ensure people took it seriously when told to evacuate rather than because of the need for more resources. ‘We did that together not because it was needed for any resources to be brought to bear but because it was to give people confidence that when the Police told them they were to evacuate, they were to evacuate: this is an emergency.’ She said there were already sufficient resources in place to fight the fire and the state of emergency was called within an hour and a half of the mayors being advised people were being evacuated”
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11802069

Friday 17 February 2017

Editorial: Lack of information on Port Hills fires excruciating “Some will say that when a crisis of this magnitude hits, people need to get on with dealing with it, rather than telling people what is going on. This is misguided. Reliable information is crucial in dangerous times – to calm public anxiety, to mobilise resources from within the community, to tell people to move when they need to, and to warn people to stay away at times. … Fear and hysteria are more likely when people are ill-informed. In Christchurch this week, the state of emergency was declared 48 hours after the fires started, after mass evacuations began and only after a serious escalation of the blazes which might have been foreseen in a worst-case-scenario risk assessment. Civil Defence guidelines state that states of emergency should be declared ‘early rather than late’ – advice which seems to have been ignored in this case. No-one can doubt the bravery and dedication of those on the front lines, but there seems to have been blocked lines of communication at the strategic level. Maybe part of the problem is that New Zealand, a country of just 4.5 million people, has multiple layers of authorities and agencies with sometimes conflicting roles. The fires have burned across the boundaries of Christchurch City and Selwyn District, which is why the state of emergency was declared jointly by mayors Lianne Dalziel and Sam Broughton. How long did it take them to co-ordinate that decision? Could a single authority have done it more quickly? Brownlee had the power to declare an emergency himself, as did the wider-area Civil Defence Emergency Management Group, but they did not do so. The Selwyn Rural Fire Authority was the lead agency in fighting the fires, which seemed incongruous once houses in Christchurch city suburbs began to burn. There has to be a swifter and simpler way of dealing with emergencies, and in letting people know how to react. That needs to be one of the lessons learned from these fires.” http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/opinion/89503846/editorial-lack-of-information-on-port-hills-fires-excrutiating

Civil Defence Minister believes state of emergency should’ve been declared earlier
https://www.maoritelevision.com/news/regional/civil-defence-minister-believes-state-emergency-shouldve-been-declared-earlier

Port Hills fire: ‘Impact is the biggest in NZ history’ “The fire broke out on Monday night and was at it’s peak on Wednesday afternoon when two huge columns of smoke started to build, intensifying the flames and pushing crews to their limit. ‘A lot of people are asking why we weren’t putting water on it while it was burning away,’ said Rural Fire sector boss Phil Crutchley. ‘We were looking at 100,000 kilowatts of temperature per square metre – any water we put on that just evaporated. We just pulled back, it was just too dangerous. There was nothing we could do that would have stopped that.’ As a result, homes were lost and other properties damaged – but he made no apology. The columns had the power of two atomic bombs behind them and there was nothing on earth that could have been done to take the guts out of them.”
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/port-hills-fire-impact-is-the-biggest-in-nz-history/

Beginning of Port Hills fire: How McCarthy Contractors responded when they first saw smoke “Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel and Selwyn Mayor Sam Broughton conceded there were communication problems between the different fire organisations in Canterbury, and declaring a state of emergency took too long.”
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11802653

Firefighters were sent home early from Christchurch fire response, union says “New Zealand Professional Firefighters Union Secretary Derek Best has called for an independent inquiry. He said firefighters were sent home for 90 minutes at nightfall on Monday after they had contained but not extinguished the fire. Just an hour and a half later they were called back to the scene, but it was too late. … an inquiry was needed not just into the fire services but into the entire disaster response. ‘Really the same issues from the Christchurch earthquake are still present.’ … Early Valley Rd homeowner Ken McKenzie believed … ‘If action had been taken quicker and we’d got more resources to the site … it should have been able to be stopped before it headed towards town. ‘If they got helicopters and bulldozers in, it could have been stopped. The issue I have is pretty much the organisation, the level above – there’s something drastically wrong.'” http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89546268/firefighters-were-sent-home-early-from-christchurch-fire-response-union-says

Port Hills fire: Firefighters ‘needlessly’ called away
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/324689/port-hills-fire-firefighters-‘needlessly’-called-away

‘Tomorrow it will hit me’: Emotional firefighter describes Port Hills fire fury “exhaustion and low morale among the firefighters in the first few days.. But when the fire became contained, the mood changed.”
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/tomorrow-it-will-hit-me-emotional-firefighter-describes-port-hills-fire-fury/

Analysis: What could have been done to stop the Port Hills blaze? “Canterbury Civil Defence controller John Mackie says officials were ‘just going by the book’ when leaving the initial response to the fires to Selwyn’s rural fire team, rather than Christchurch officials. ‘That’s prescribed in the act… the responsibility for the rural fire lies on the authority in whose area it starts – even though it may cross a boundary, that jurisdiction doesn’t change.’ Mackie says Canterbury’s Civil Defence group set up an emergency operations centre early on Wednesday morning, as Governors Bay came under threat, and made the case for a state of emergency when evacuations started to increase later that afternoon. Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel denies officials were too slow to declare a state of emergency, saying work on the declaration began ‘from the moment we were advised that people were being evacuated from their houses’. There was no issue of firefighters lacking in numbers, Mackie says – it was simply that they felt they had the fire under control, before the weather began to conspire against them. ‘The rural fire officers were saying that they had ample resources available: it was only when [there was an] escalation of the number of people being evacuated, and the [increased] risk to urban residents, that was the main reason for the declaration.’ But couldn’t there have been more helicopters with monsoon buckets in the air, or firefighters on the ground? Not according to Selwyn Mayor Sam Broughton, who says there are more choppers available than there is room for them. ‘We’re at saturation point in the sky – there’s not another helicopter that could fit in the space safely.’ … Labour Port Hills MP Ruth Dyson says lessons from the response to the fire can wait until after it is extinguished for good.”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/89466598/analysis-what-could-have-been-done-to-stop-the-port-hills-blaze

Hosking critiques Civil Defence 190217

Mike Hosking critiques Civil Defence response, Seven Sharp 17 Feb 2017


Mike Hosking on Seven Sharp, TV1 – ‘Nationalise Civil Defence, scrap regional CDEM’ http://tvnz.co.nz/seven-sharp/mike-s-view-communication-hopeless-during-christchurch-fire-disaster-video-6515331 – This simplistic view is circulating amongst those distant from response, where the instinct to ‘make the chaotic situation sensible’ overrides grasp of reality.

In disasters, scale overwhelms sensibility. Reporting can far from keep pace. So many moving parts and uncertainties are involved that synchronisation is not possible. Responders are overwhelmed, trying to face down the unleashed hazard. Every scrap of resource is needed. This can include many, many volunteers. These are ground factors that will never be fully known, understood or controlled at a distance.

Hosking and Brownlee’s wish for centralised civil defence would be to put many more people in much greater harms way, without the ability to confront and respond to their own challenges immediately, directly and collectively, on the ground they discover and face. That is why what the mis-leaders want hasn’t been the case.

The regional system of response escalation simply needs to be understood, supported and made to work. This starts with identifying and removing the particular empowered obstacles to regional civil defence who oppose and inhibit it, to great public detriment. Look to the statements and behaviour of all the local mayors we’ve had especially. City has consistently undermined region, so far. Unacceptable.

Saturday 18 February 2017
Christchurch City Council and Civil Defence held a first large meeting with evacuated residents, in Spreydon’s South-West Baptist Church gymnasium on the Saturday morning ending a fiery week. Attendees were mostly from Kennedy’s Bush and very distressed. Easterly winds still held their homes most at risk, that they hadn’t really understood until this point. Recently-buried asbestos on private land was of great concern and news to most residents too; ECan fronted to say this had been approved. Every evacuated area was represented at the meeting where information flow was roundly criticised and a single online up-to-date source demanded; also, hourly email updates from council on what was happening. These started around mid-day the next day, semi-hourly. Collated: https://ccc.govt.nz/the-council/newsline/show/1406

Council’s primary goal out of this meeting was to break it down into more manageable, evacuated street by street meetings (which took place the following Thursday, 23 Feb). Next to the fire, residents were being hosed down now. They were understandably angered by inept emergency response leading to property damage, disruption and loss. After 90 minutes many were were walking out though and an outside corridor large informal meet-up ensued. The city mayor wanted to join it as the back of the gym audience hadn’t been connecting with the front, unheard due to poor microphone sharing and crowd engagement. Dalziel was peremptorily reminded by those still seated though, “We’re the ones paying attention!” and had to continue on-stage for a later closing.

Alistair Humphreys addresses fire evacuees 18Feb2017

Canterbury Medical Officer of Health, Alistair Humphreys addresses fire evacuees, 18 Feb 2017


NZ Fire Service and Civil Defence etc reps answer fire evacuee questions 18Feb2017

NZ Fire Service, Rural Fire and Civil Defence etc reps answer fire evacuee questions, 18 Feb 2017

John Key’s government had sacked the wrong council, for private profit, early 2010. A regional response would have been more powerful, sooner, with likely much better results than this very obvious fire response debacle.

Communications and cordons heavily criticised at Port Hills meeting “Dalziel promised that the council would review the response and do better in the future. The meeting came a day after the professional firefighters union told media they could have extinguished the fire on Monday, had they not been sent home for 90 minutes.”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89559332/communications-and-cordons-heavily-criticised-at-port-hills-meeting

Port Hills fire: more than 100 properties still cordoned
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/324774/port-hills-fire-more-than-100-properties-still-cordoned

Sunday 19 February 2017
Port Hills residents clean up and clear out
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89576326/port-hills-residents-clean-up-and-clear-out

Parts of Christchurch’s Port Hills likely to remain closed for several weeks
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89564881/parts-of-christchurchs-port-hills-likely-to-remain-closed-for-several-weeks

Mark Reason: John Key goes from PM to shameless salesman in record time “Who knows what Key believes in, although certainly investment in himself and engagement of us seem near to top of the list” http://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/opinion/89532461/Mark-Reason-John-Key-goes-from-PM-to-shameless-salesman-in-record-time

Monday 20 February 2017 – one week on

‘Nobody wants a dead hero’: celebrated Christchurch fires helicopter pilot Steve Askin farewelled http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/89581850/funeral-for-celebrated-christchurch-fires-helicopter-pilot-steve-askin

Firefighters could have died if not pulled back during Port Hills blaze “When you’ve got that amount of heat coming up the hill and big boulders rolling down the hill, what do you think is the right call in that situation.”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/89581311/bad-weather-grounds-helicopters-fighting-port-hills-blaze

While Christchurch burns, Wellington talks “‘bringing together rural, urban, volunteer and paid urban firefighters into one national organisation for the first time’. The new Fire and Emergency New Zealand (Fenz) will mean ‘a much better standard of service delivery, a much better deal for our rural and volunteer firefighters and a much better deal for New Zealanders’ … The response in Christchurch suggested an uncoordinated system. Who should have called a state of emergency and when, exactly? Why, Brownlee asked, were the rural fire services leading things? ‘I’m perplexed as to why you’ve got the Selwyn District or rural firefighters running things inside Christchurch City Council district boundaries’ … The updated law, after advice from firefighters, will clarify that letting a fire burn can be a valid response to a fire. … only NZ First was opposed to moving this legislation on to the next phase. … Two reports from Australia have convinced him [Clayton Mitchell] that mergers of urban and rural services favour the urban culture at the expense of rural. Do we risk driving the rural volunteers away?” [emphasis added] http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/89488611/while-christchurch-burns-wellington-talks

Port Hills fire evacuations: ‘Nothing ever seems to change’
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/324856/port-hills-fire-evacuations-‘nothing-ever-seems-to-change’

Dunne responds to criticism of Port Hills fire
http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/201833839/dunne-responds-to-criticism-of-port-hills-fire

Christchurch Mayor criticised for lack of information
http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/201833830/christchurch-mayor-criticised-for-lack-of-information

Port Hills resident frustrated at lack of information
http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/201833828/port-hills-resident-frustrated-at-lack-of-information

Civil Defence ‘failing’ to give Port Hills residents vital info
http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/201833816/civil-defence-‘failing’-to-give-port-hills-residents-vital-info

Mike Yardley: Response to Christchurch fires from officials ‘rudderless’ “as the past seven days have unfolded, a multitude of alarm bells have been rightly rung about the cack-handed response and somewhat rudderless leadership from officialdom. The acting Civil Defence Minister, Gerry Brownlee, was far from alone in feeling ‘perplexed’ at the belated nature of the state of civil emergency being declared. Social media lit up on Wednesday afternoon, as the inferno raging across the Port Hills seemingly galloped out of control. Hundreds of residents vented their increasing dismay and disbelief at the apparent failure of the Selwyn and Christchurch mayors to get to grips with the enormity of the ever-billowing threat. Individuals were pleading with Mayor Dalziel and senior city councillors, via their Facebook pages, to urgently declare a state of emergency. It took a further two hours after Westmorland was suddenly evacuated at 4pm, before the declaration was issued. Some hillside residents had packed and were ready to self-evacuate at 1pm. They could see the situation gravely deteriorating, first-hand.”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89612043/mike-yardley-response-to-christchurch-fires-from-officials-rudderless
– Yardley’s anti-ECan positioning has long blinded him to insight into defective regional response. Use what we have, don’t hinder it! Yardley’s wanting “declaration issued much earlier in the afternoon” is a joke. First thing Tuesday was the right time, the only time to have hit the fires from the air with everything possible and cauterise the threat. A declaration then would have been entirely reasonable, given the extreme dry hills risk at this time and that fire spanned two district boundaries – the ECan CDEM action trigger, purportedly. Declaration early Tuesday and military resources were available as regional council options, but ECan naysayers like Mike and Gerry have it firmly in a sealed box, held captive and useless. At least Huntsbury remained safe. Not.

John Campbell on RNZ Checkpoint – ‘What went wrong? It depends who you ask’
Hundreds of people waiting to return home after Port Hills fire
http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/201833922/hundreds-of-people-waiting-to-return-home-after-port-hills-fire
– helping Ruth Dyson provide cover for ongoing National-Labour CDEM botches,
Fire and Emergency Bill would provide clarity in major events
http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/checkpoint/audio/201833923/fire-and-emergency-bill-would-provide-clarity-in-major-events

Tuesday 21 February 2017

Port Hills fire – Update Tuesday 12:20pm: State of Emergency extended
“‘this remains a serious situation that requires a significant and coordinated multi-agency response,’ the Mayor said. ‘While the State of Emergency terminates tomorrow evening, we are mindful of the significance of 22 February to the Canterbury community and as a result we agreed it was appropriate to consider the status of the State of Emergency today.’ The extension automatically lasts for seven days, but can be terminated earlier. The Joint Committee will meet on Friday to consider the transition to recovery. That will be an appropriate time to reconsider the need for the State of Emergency to remain in place”
https://ccc.govt.nz/the-council/newsline/show/1406

State of Emergency extended: ‘The fire is not out’
http://www.star.kiwi/2017/02/state-of-emergency-extended-the-fire-is-not-out/

Wednesday 22 February 2017

Christchurch Civil Defence
Port Hills Fire – Update #8 – 5.30pm
“Fire progress: The Fire Service is pleased to announce that good progress has been made in controlling the fire in the Worselys Road area. Patrols will continue in the area, but crews will no longer be actively working in the area unless called in for a flare up. Residents are asked to help by being vigilant and to DIAL 111 IMMEDIATELY IF THEY SEE ANY SIGN OF THE FIRE REIGNITING. ‘Our crews have made great progress and we’re pleased to be able to pull back from the Worsleys area, but we really need people to keep a watch on things for us,’ said Fire Service Liaison Officer Bruce Irvine. ‘The more eyes we have out there looking the better.’ Fire services are continuing operations in other areas affected by the fire.”

Christchurch Earthquake Memorial draws on rich tradition of memorials around the world
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/christchurch-earthquake-2011/89638351/christchurch-earthquake-memorial-draws-on-rich-tradition-of-memorials-around-the-world

Thursday 23 February 2017

Christchurch Civil Defence
Port Hills Fire – Update #3 – 1pm
“Fire operations: Fire services advise that 90% of the fire perimeter area is now considered to be controlled. Controlled is defined as bare earth or blacked out ground for at least 10 metres.”

Residents Update:
Port Hills Fire – Update #4 – 1.30pm
“Free GP visits are being offered to people affected by the Port Hills fires, at the discretion of their General Practice team. This includes people who worked on or are still working on fire control and recovery operations. The offer period covers the 2 months from 13 February 2017, the day the fire started.”

24 February 2017

The science behind the South Island’s first fire tornado
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89730960/the-science-behind-the-south-islands-first-fire-tornado

25 February 2017

Port Hills fires recovery managers named
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/89796995/port-hills-fires-recovery-managers-named

National portrait: Richard McNamara, the face of the Port Hills fires
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89700695/national-portrait-richard-mcnamara-the-face-of-the-port-hills-fires

26 February 2017

Port Hills fires rubberneckers ‘not welcome’, says Christchurch City Council
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/89807125/port-hills-fires-rubberneckers-not-welcome-says-christchurch-city-council

A good steady rain, this day – 5-12mm across the fire ground, low-high altitude.

Monday 27 February 2017 – two weeks on

Editorial: Civil Defence faces an uncertain future Fire and Emergency New Zealand – “after Fenz has expanded to include Civil Defence it could eventually broaden to cover ambulance services as well”
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/opinion/89779025/editorial-civil-defence-faces-an-uncertain-future

28 February 2017
Government, city council pledge $6 million to grow ‘resilience’ in Canterbury The Press

Wednesday 1 March 2017 – State of Emergency lifted at 6pm

Port Hills fires: State of emergency to lift, hill residents on alert for flare-ups
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/89915130/port-hills-fires-state-of-emergency-to-lift-hill-residents-on-alert

Saturday 4 March 2017

Devastated Port Hills now open to public by road
http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/90057550/devastated-port-hills-now-open-to-public

Fire perimeter now fully contained and controlled “Fire authorities working on the Port Hills fire are now confident the fire is substantially under control and are withdrawing overnight patrols.”
https://ccc.govt.nz/the-council/newsline/show/1406

Friday 10 March 2017
Port Hills fires exposed tensions and confusion within fire crews, but change will come The Press http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/90275638/fire-reforms-will-change-way-fires-like-those-in-the-port-hills-are-fought + Firestorm graphical essay research https://assets.stuff.co.nz/interactives/2017/firestorm/

Thursday 20 April 2017
Port Hills fires finally extinguished “Fire authorities say the massive blaze that broke out on Christchurch’s Port Hills two months ago, burning through 2000ha of land, is now completely out.”
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/329135/port-hills-fires-finally-extinguished

Thursday 11 May 2017
Port Hills chopper crash caused by bucket cables – report Radio NZ
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/330550/port-hills-chopper-crash-caused-by-bucket-cables-report

[Further editing may follow]

Live: Homes evacuated as Christchurch Port Hills fires rage out of control 16 Feb 2017
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/89455976/live-homes-evacuated-as-christchurch-port-hills-fire-rage-out-of-control

LIVE: Port Hills fire – Day 4 Radio NZ 16 Feb 2017
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/324608/live-battle-to-contain-port-hills-fires-continues

Port Hills blaze: Live updates Newshub
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/port-hills-blaze-live-updates.html +

Christchurch Port Hills blaze in photos
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/christchurch-port-hills-blaze-in-photos.html

Is Civil Defence really in control of the Christchurch fires? “it’s high time for less bureaucracy and more open and honest communication. Civil Defence does not want the blood of New Zealanders on its hands. Who can the public trust in times of national emergency? At the moment it’s the media” Newshub 16 Feb 2017 http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/the-burning-question-is-civil-defence-really-in-control-of-the-christchurch-fires.html

Mayors’ war of words with Brownlee over Port Hills state of emergency “Mr Brownlee said the most accurate information about the fire on Wednesday came from the media – not officials. Those in charge of the fire response have ‘got to learn’ from this experience, Mr Brownlee said. ‘I was in Wellington, not Christchurch.’ Prime Minister Bill English also confirmed there will be a review of the Civil Defence response and the delay in declaring a state of emergency.” http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/mayors-war-of-words-with-brownlee-over-port-hills-state-of-emergency.html

Patrick Gower: Port Hills fire shows Civil Defence a shambles yet again
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2017/02/patrick-gower-port-hills-fire-shows-civil-defence-a-shambles-yet-again.html

Port Hills fire: 1000 people forced to evacuate “For the second time, James Frost has lost a home to disaster in Christchurch. He said he found out at 11pm on Wednesday that the fire had reached his evacuated home.. while most police officers were good, one of his flatmates was left in tears because of a police officer who ‘didn’t have the people skills to deal with the scenario'” http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/port-hills-blaze-evacuees-forced-to-leave-everything-behind.html

Port Hills community pulls together to find homes for animal evacuees
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/port-hills-community-pulls-together-to-find-homes-for-animal-evacuees.html

Port Hills family loses classic car collection, home in fire
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/port-hills-family-loses-classic-car-collection-home-in-fire.html

Video: Social media reacts to Christchurch fire
http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2017/02/video-social-media-reacts-to-christchurch-fire.html

[1] CTV refs.
Canterbury Television: New Zealand’s SHAME The Press 10 March 2017
https://riktindall.wordpress.com/2013/10/04/canterbury-television-new-zealands-shame/
September 4 #JUSTICE 4 #CTV families
https://riktindall.wordpress.com/2013/09/04/september-4-justice-4-ctv-families-christchurch-quake-new-zealand-eqnz-ccc-chch-nz/
Civil defence fail compensation due #JohnKey #NZ
https://riktindall.wordpress.com/2013/02/21/civil-defence-fail-compensation-due-johnkey-nz-new-zealand-eqnz-christchurch-quake-chch-cdem-ctv-22feb2011-nzdf-ecan/
#CTV inquest. 214 dead. #EQNZ #PikeRiver #Chch #quake
https://riktindall.wordpress.com/2013/01/21/ctv-inquest-214-dead-eqnz-pikeriver-chch-quake-cdem-nz-arrestjohnkey-ecan-ows-christchurch/

This week’s Youth Focus event saw PYLAT, Youth Voice Canterbury and Christchurch Youth Council combine, to engage and inform in the 2016 local elections.* Over two evenings, west and east Christchurch city council wards were all covered thoroughly, with candidate Q+As. Regional council and district health board candidates also had opportunity to introduce themselves, briefly. A city environs context was very much set. Mental health and entertainment activities for Christchurch youth were core concerns. Youth Focus was great! Thank you.

Cruize Erueti takes on the Labour establishment, Youth Focus 270916

Cruize Erueti takes on the Labour establishment, Youth Focus 270916

On the second evening, a mayoral debate exposed the competence of the candidate range. Tubby Hansen did not appear, Lianne Dalziel and John Minto did. Public transport and river quality promises then tripped them up.

On the buses, Dalziel called upon Environment Canterbury Regional Council (ECan) and/or central Government to “give them back” to the Christchurch City Council (CCC), asserting they were both the same thing having equal power to deliver this. But is it a fact? Demonstrably wrong about the ECan partner, Dalziel claimed that after the elections a commissioner majority will hold sway there so the organisation was a write-off. Elected members will from October become the ECan majority, actually. So has this Mayor been listening or just wrapped up in her own acquired authority? Minto’s promise to make bus travel free, and to pay for it from cancelled government road projects, impossibly exceeds the mayoral role.

Youth Focus mayoral debate 270916 - pic by PYLAT

Youth Focus mayoral debate 270916 – pic by PYLAT

On Christchurch city rivers, Minto’s promise to clean them up and make them “swimmable” traps him in a rural debate over which, again, he can have little agency – of debatable point or achievable reality. This is empty pitching to the galleries. Enough.

The gem in this debate was Dalziel’s announced discovery from Hurunui District Council, that the youth council can become a standing committee of CCC, with all CCC committee chairs then taking a seat alongside them. It would raise the effect of the youth voice through direct access to the city council. A declared challenge was then how much the Christchurch Youth Council has been valuing its independence. So a trade-off is on offer in the incumbent mayor’s election policy.

Minto’s long experience as a high school teacher qualifies him with a well-tuned ear for where youth issues of the city are at, albeit having arrived here only last year.

The model of ‘youth community boards’, initiated in the city south and advocated by at least one community board candidate for the north next, factors in all this. Are they or will they be subordinate to the Christchurch Youth Council, as recognised by CCC? What democratic elected structure and scope is likely to pertain?

These sure are interesting times for youth politics in Christchurch city. Dynamic. Inspiring. Go well! Thanks again.

Youth Focus team members take a well-deserved bow, 270916

Youth Focus team members take a well-deserved bow, 270916

* Pacific Youth Leadership And Transformation – PYLAT Council
ccc.govt.nz/elections + cdhb.health.nz/elections + ecan.govt.nz/elections

Previous on topic:
riktindall.wordpress.com/christchurch-south-youth-community-resilience-role-ccc-chch-preparedness-nz

Open and independent, balanced and reasoning minds are required for good regional governance.

Heat over bad water is rising generally, around Havelock North’s current crisis. The larger water quantity, population and risk in Canterbury mean that every tool available to resolve the same challenge must be applied here – and this especially includes democracy. ‘Many eyes keep bugs shallower’,  as the open-source software movement says. Let us all be enabled to act to preserve water quality, essentially.

Tuesday saw competing meetings in Lincoln about freshwater recovery: Two meetings, two visions for Canterbury’s freshwater lakes and rivers. The outcome from the blame game is, who can you believe?

Water users will defend their interests, the stronger the greater these are. Political interests step in taking sides, which muddies the water further.

Fish, fowl or four-legs? we may well ask – all are farmed from the natural resource.

So when fishers and fowlers claim the moral high ground, I for one stand unconvinced.

The Environment Minister is correct identifying a, if not the, major contributor to faecal contamination of urban waterways – that city dwellers get blamed for but cannot change!

Fishers and fowlers maintain hunting stock at maximum possible limits. But more city dwellers want the very messy canada geese gone from river banks, boating infrastructure and estuary and cleaner local rivers.

Thus Fish and Game oppose game-bird culls and leave Christchurch with the crap: both green poos and water quality blame. So it does not wash at all for ‘environmentalists’ to side with farmers of the rivers and lakes (Fish and Game base) expediently, to make their case and too-easy-allies.

Park or wild goose habitat? NZ

Park or wild goose habitat? Photo 170914: “Large flocks of canada geese have descended on the Waterstone subdivision in Paraparaumu, fouling the lakes, grassy areas, paths and walkways. Now residents are urging the council to organise a cull.” http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/kapiti/10517793/Calls-to-cull-wandering-geese

Now Fish and Game claim a place at the Environment Canterbury regulatory table for their farming interests too? Who is this helping really? One more example is enough.

The hazard-prone Opuha Dam in South Canterbury enabled much more dairy irrigation there – love it or hate it for its effects.

Fish and Game’s position is to support the dam, to steady the Opuha River flow for their trout. At this point the argument ends and I leave you to decide your own votes and whose interests you really want served in regional decision-making. Pick those with no interest materially different to your own: no conflict. Pick pure values.

Should it come as no surprise that state broadcast media sides with national government choosing winners in this debate? If we can have no trust in Radio New Zealand or The Press to avoid bias, what use are they to the public in greater emergency?

Refs. Chch water contaminated 125 times in four years, RNZ 30 August 2016 +
Swimmable lakes would require a bird cull – Smith +
Don’t blame birds for bad water, minister told 1 September 2016.

Water shot mix - northern South Island NZ

Water-shot mix, northern South Island NZ – “friends setting Canada goose decoys on the Acheron River during the Molesworth Goose hunt” – NZ stock photo: http://www.naturespic.com/newzealand/image.asp?id=45869

Water quality, real story-telling and this election are about one and the same thing: integrity.

For the only former Canterbury councillor running again in 2016 and therefore a referendum on central government’s treatment of Canterbury democracy and water equity, see CommunityVoice.nz

Quoting a certain prime minister for New Zealand journalism’s benefit, “Get some guts!”

Please do Vote

Kia ora

Spreydon-Heathcote Youth Community Board 260716

‘Spreydon-Heathcote Youth Community Board’ 260716

An opportunity to bring constructive resilience to our local communities and youth has been lost, rudely hijacked. The ‘Spreydon-Heathcote Youth Community Board’ has turned out to be a community fraud, an in-house training exercise for Labour Youth. What a shocking waste.

When I suggested last December to bring representatives from all local school councils in the ward together, it was for a broad and deliberative democratic improvement, not a mirror-replica of Labour-dominated local politics. Diversity, depth and breadth of representation and goals were intended, with a Christchurch South youth community resilience role.

Instead my initiative, for a Spreydon-Heathcote Youth Council – for active engagement between local youth, residents’ groups and Civil Defence etc. – was headed off and greatly limited, by Labour politicians using the already-laden Christchurch Youth Council. The corruption of this process is highly pronounced.

What a disgusting insider-substitute for real inclusive agency around resilience and greater good:

the Spreydon-Heathcote Youth Community Fraud just sails away, a mockery of succession planning.


Graphic source, Wigram MP Megan Woods’ facebook post “The most excellent Spreydon Heathcote Youth Community Board – making sure their bit of Christchurch has a strong youth voice! Keep up the great work!”

When Christchurch City Council Senior Project Manager Lee Sampson opposed his local residents’ association, over an intersection upgrade that most in the area want, he backed the powerful against the weak and breached vital governance lines unacceptably. He should know better than to throw local government weight around like this and allow his neighbours to have their say duly heard.

The Hoon Hay/Cashmere/Worsleys Road intersection is scheduled for upgrade to traffic lights in the council Long Term Plan. But construction and opening of a cycling Adventure Park off Worsleys Road in 2016 concerns Cracroft residents especially that congestion delays increase unmitigated.

The Cracroft, Westmorland, Hoon Hay, Lower Cashmere and Cashmere residents’ associations have all agreed that the lights are needed now, to safely manage the increasing Cashmere Road traffic flow. Council has heard the call and is considering an accelerated upgrade this year. So when council staff start attacking the position of the residents it looks very suspicious indeed.[1]

Is this a determination by council authorities to neutralise the organised voice of the residents? Apparently so. Sampson next wants to claim a community board seat off the residents and campaigns now to that effect.[2]

What does this make the Dalziel-Edwards-run council look like? A rates appropriation of power that refuses local direction, steam-rolling commercial development through and homogenising ‘representation’.

Democracy is much better than this and needs to say so in October. Kia ora.

Southern View 26Apr16 p5

Southern View 26Apr16 p5

[1] Southern View letters, 26 April 2016

Cashmere HoonHay Worsleys Road Intersection upgrade

Cashmere HoonHay Worsleys Road Intersection upgrade

The Hoon Hay/Cashmere/Worsleys Road intersection design in the new District Plan, that most residents want brought forward – before large Adventure Park events cause traffic chaos this summer.

Southern View 120416 p.1

[2] “Health board boss says Princess Margaret Hospital campaign ‘misleading’ residents“ 19Jul16 stuff.co.nz/national/health/82232610/princess-margaret-hospital-closure-making-life-hard-for-elderly-residents

CCC Media Release - Elections 2016 Candidates Information Evening

CCC Elections 2016 – Candidates’ Information Evenings

Democracy needs friends at Christchurch City Council and in local government. Dirty deals to close shop are rife, with council staff put up to prevent the ‘outside’ rate-paying public from ever representing themselves. This is blatant, obscene corruption, that must end.

No wonder revolution is in the air, viz Brexit: when Labour – people’s supposed alternative – is implicated in what is so badly wrong, people despair! Self-anointed “People’s Choice”, Labour technocrats would steal elections and displace rate-payers from their own governance role, from having real choice, as a career option. Labour competes with the public itself! This is electoral crime that voters have power to reject, and to cut self-perpetuating waste within council at the same time: too many councillors and committees shows incompetence.

Already documented is CCC staff member and People’s Choice candidate Lee Sampson’s case – corporate-fascism-at-ccc-sampson-to-resign-christchurch-city-council – where Sampson poses as community member to advance city council planning objectives: stuff.co.nz/national/health/80065995/residents-fight-to-keep-services-at-christchurchs-princess-margaret-hospital. For this imposture, CEO Karleen Edwards should be sacking Sampson, or she endorses underhand Labour hegemony over communities. Dr Edwards, sack Sampson now!

Add to Sampson’s subterfuge those of ECan project managers who – also for People’s Choice – also would seize public representation roles: “In 2016 we have funding from.. Environment Canterbury” – workingwaterstrust.org/who-are-we. With a Zone Committee chair foisted into the democracy breach too at ECan, technocracy, not the rate or tax payer, is to rule under Labour! stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/81225366/three-regional-council-candidates-to-focus-on-change Oh that’s right, there is precedent, when a People’s Choice regional councillor did private consulting for Central Plains Water irrigation company in the 2004-2007 term. Disgusting betrayal of rate-payers and democratic principle, as outright self-service.

That central government endorses what is so wrong with Christchurch City democracy can be seen in this simple fact: in 2010, Key and Co. sacked the Environment Canterbury council for a single 7:7 drawn vote; but when the City Council has one it passes without comment – stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/80893686/catholic-church-told-it-must-pay-150000-development-fee

Will the Mayor’s welfare-assisting capacity continue with Labour power over Christchurch? –
stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/81358306/christchurch-earthquake-fund-closes-after-donating-82m

And will the city’s public assets adequately be protected? –
stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/81468439/sale-delay-for-christchurch-city-councils-maintenance-company-city-care

Go along to the CCC candidates’ information evenings advertised above, to learn how to help and participate in better democracy and better outcomes for Christchurch.

Kia ora

Hints:
stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/comment/columnists/80874905/democracy-doesnt-come-with-optional-extras
hbr.org/2016/03/the-most-important-leadership-competencies-according-to-leaders-around-the-world