Another day, another polluted water source in Canterbury. This time, it’s in Woodend, which is pretty much Greater Christchurch now (it’s where the large “Pegasus” subdivision is.) This is after there was a contamination issue in Rolleston in May. I do like the opening line:

Authorities in Waimakariri are still trying to trace how E.coli got into the Woodend water supply.

Gee whizz, I wonder? Meanwhile, in the Perspective section of the Press, two of the ECan commissars commissioners argue that the water situation in Canterbury is “going to get worse before it gets better”:

People are rightly asking: what is being done? And when can we expect to see improvements in the state of water at favourite swimming or fishing spots, a reduction in algal blooms in lakes and rivers, and a turnaround in the level of nitrates in shallow groundwater? The answer to the first question is that a huge amount of work is already going on to improve freshwater – particularly over the past four years since the collaborative Canterbury Water Management Strategy was agreed. Getting water management right remains the single highest priority for Environment Canterbury. The answer to the second question is that unfortunately things are likely to get worse before they get better. This is simply because so much of Canterbury’s water is located underground.

Your job is to manage water. You know you are doing it badly, and yet you get to keep your job? How is this any better than the elected ECan? Oh, that’s right. The ECan coup wasn’t about improving water quality in Canterbury; it was about ensuring that certain interests got the water that they wanted, which wasn’t going to happen with an elected council. The water quality in Canterbury is declining rapidly, the nitrate levels are increasing alarmingly – and the widespread irrigation that the ECan coup was designed to encourage hasn’t even started yet.

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