Submission id number: 963454
Do you want to speak to Councillors at the hearings?
How are we doing? Is there anything you would like to tell us?
I live in Hindon approximately 40 minutes from the city centre. I am concerned with consent given to commercial forestry companies to plant radiata pine with no consideration to the environment, land and water or the local community. In Hindon specifically, The Game Hen Stream, Game Cock Stream, Styles Gully and Fraser’s Gully, water ways have had native and scrub bulldozed into them several pre 1900 gold mining sites destroyed or damaged, with ongoing damage happening just to plant pine trees. There are mines that have had the entrance covered up and pines planted on top of them (damage to historic sites but also major health and safety issues in the future. The block that is being planted this season has had gold mining tracks bulldozed and only the entrances of some mines documented but not the actual tunnel running underground which will be planted on top of. There was at least one hut remains that was in plain view that was completely destroyed. There appears to be complete disregard of the environment including heritage sites and waterways. On our property they bulldozed through our land without permission destroying a creek in the process because they said the boundary should be straight. When I pointed out the survey peg I was told it didn’t mean anything even though this is what the land was purchased on. They bulldozed another section of boundary fence and one of our internal fences. After I discovered it I kept. stock out of nearly a third of our property for several months until fence was fixed because they had promised reparation in the form of grazing but they planted months before they said they were going to, so that promise was never upheld.These issues is still on going over a year later. There needs to be a process that is better regulated and inspections of properties done by outside agencies ensure honest reports are done. With a focus on clean waterways who inspects the waterways when forestry is planted only 5metres away from the water, especially when it is carbon farming. On the Taieri River banks bulldozing was undertaken right to the waters edge (what is classified as riverbed), one section was planted last season and even though not a high survival rate of the pines there are some still growing that were planted on the Queens Chain even though the company says they are not. One section that was bulldozed was not even owned by them it is leased by another party. During land prep for planting hectares of native bush have been bulldozed and then the pines are planted extremely close to remaining native which will die in a short amount of time and next planting round there will be even less native bush and it will continue again constantly reducing native forests. To eradicate pests there have been 1080 drops meaning many deer are killed (it takes them 2-3 days to die and often go to waterways. Hence why the water in the Taieri at the Outram Glen was unsafe for swimming! There seems to be no accountability or shame for what is happening.
What other ideas should we be thinking about to include in future plans for our city?
Consent to plant native forests which do not destroy the land would be more beneficial to the environment not producing the carbon emissions like pine forests which get logged by heavy machinery and the waste produces carbon emissions and the whole life cycle of pine forests sours the soil eventually making it unsuitable for anything. There needs to be better measures to inspect and test waterways regularly especially in the vicinity of exotic forests. Native forests should not be allowed to be cleared for exotic plantations and wilding pines/ firs need to be monitored and watched closely to ensure native forest is not further being reduced. I believe there should be a minimum buffer of 100 metres from waterways at their highest point not taken from levels in drought conditions. There should also be a minimum buffer of 100 metres from native forest to ensure it survives.