Slash left on forest land after harvest is a scandal, and a sign of incredibly poor harvest methods.
I have been directly involved in forestry for over 40 years.
We are in the final weeks of harvesting all our forests. We employ quality crews for our harvest. You could visit our land and see absolutely minimal slash. Slash is removed and sold as pulp at break even pricing. While this policy may cost extra $1 or $2 per ton harvested, this ensures easy replanting, a lower cost overall for the forest owner, and almost negligible health and safety risk.
Compare this to the rubbish harvest we saw when Shane Jones visited the Northland forests post harvest a few years ago. They were a disgrace.
The same applies on the East Coast. The harvest managers and their crews are reprehensible; not only for the damage their negligence has caused, but also for the horrific extra cost of replanting and the risks of injury.
Forest managers generally are a professional bunch. They care about health and safety, and they also look to the next rotation to make sure their costs are minimised. It is clear that the Northland crews, and the East Coast crews were low quality. They should never have been allowed to undertake that work and they must be brought to account.
The focus of any investigation should be on these poor quality crews. Make sure they are properly investigated. Haul out those who are not operating to good industry standards.
However, please don’t look at extra regulations and consequent costs loaded on all the other good operators.
Managed Retreat - Major Copout
With regard to the matter of climate change, recent storms, cyclones or anything coastal in new Zealand, the popular copout phrase for political use is ‘Managed Retreat.’
The reason is that New Zealand’s Coastal Protection Policy does not include hard options such as rocks or groynes and even though the rest of the world chooses this option when it is better than soft structures , our bureaucrats are not changing their hard and fast rule.
This ‘Managed Retreat’ option has been used by Jacinda Adern, James Shaw, and recently, Labour’s Finance minister, Grant Robinson, who stated in Jack Tames’ Q and A Programme, that ‘Managed Retreat’ were the two words of the future. When questioned on how the ‘Retreat’ would be managed, Grant Robinson had no answer.
It was gratifying to see two articles written in last week’s Informer by Peter Grant and Trevor Amundsen on issues effecting our community in a common sense and practical approach.
I am writing in response to Stan Stewart’s “At Last” editorial.
Max Stembridge (now deceased) spent many many months working towards the historical building (St. Andrews By The Sea) Whitianga has today. His last name was omitted from the article. I am very proud of what he achieved and see it as a living monument to his hard work and commitment to this community church. Max was my father.