Election year 350 Otautahi Water Forum: Monday 21 November 2011, 7.30pm at the WEA, 59 Gloucester Street, Christchurch. Thank you very much to candidates Jo McLean (Labour), Clinton Dearlove (Mana) and Denis O’Rourke (New Zealand First) for presenting – a most useful discussion entailed.
“Co-governance means around water, towards 350ppm atmospheric CO2″
– asked of Labour, Green, Mana and NZ First representative speakers.
Sub-topics of concern: What forms of co-governance can these parties offer – between themselves and with tangata whenua – regarding water quality, biodiversity, minimum flows, recreation, irrigation, pollution, zone committees, metering and costs, sustainable food and renewable energy production, climate change, coal-seam fracturing (‘fracking’), etc.?
Note: Because of their recent implementation of an exclusive regional governance technique in Canterbury, the National, ACT, Maaori and United Future parties have excluded themselves from this current debate. Our apologies are extended for their formal absence here.
The forum will be filmed for highlights to later be placed on Youtube.
Thank you for your support of local democracy.
Media Release, 10 November 2011: Māori ward seats on councils endorsed
Media Release, 21 November 2011: Election forum explores coalition potential:
An election forum tonight looks at the possibility for a change of government and outputs.
Local environmental watchdogs Sustainable Canterbury have invited the Labour, Green, Mana and New Zealand First parties to speak on the topic of “co-governance around water, towards 350 parts per million atmospheric carbon dioxide”. Tangata whenua rights, sustainable industry, and greenhouse gas reductions lead the set of related challenges the group want commitments on.
Democracy has been curtailed at regional level since April 2010, and a backdrop of damaging earthquakes has further undermined systems for public voice. Sustainable Canterbury were disappointed to see the Christchurch City Council pass over the opportunity to establish a Māori ward seat recently, through its representation review, for example.
“The representation status quo does not work, and we know there is great interest in cooperative governance for justice and equity, so let’s hear what solutions are available,”says Sustainable Canterbury spokesman Rik Tindall. “Kaitiakitanga [guardianship] of the natural environment and resources is something the whole community has a stake in and wants to see done well.”
The council cannot neglect the improvement of local democracy forever, Tindall suggests. “Māori are a uniquely entitled New Zealand minority, and proportional representation at local level is an obligation long owed them by settler society. Around that question we must resolve means of renewable production that stop depleting biodiversity and the planet, for our own survival.”
Water issues have perplexed Cantabrians, with privatisation of supply now in the offing.
“The public interest needs active protection, and resource uses need to greatly improve,” Tindall says. “Good representation is required to do that job. The increase of poverty worsened by state asset stripping is a combination we want to see firm, coherent opposition to.”
The Sustainable Canterbury election forum is at 7.30pm, Monday 21 November, at the WEA, 59 Gloucester Street in Christchurch.
“‘Co-governance means around water, towards 350 partsper million atmospheric carbon dioxide’ is our forum theme tonight. If the opposition parties can agree on how to achieve that together, people have a very strong reason to vote for them,” Tindall concludes.
Note, parallel event: Labour, Green, and National? panel on the fracking issue, at 7pm in lecture theatre C1, University of Canterbury in Ilam, run by the Social Wing of the Anglican Church – contact Nicholas Laing 027-340-8211.