Monday, August 20, 2018

Small victories

The Greens had their annual conference over the weekend, and after some jousing over the waka-jumping law, were able to announce some small victories for the environment. The first is a proposal to put protection of water into the Overseas Investment Act - effectively, the law change Eugenie Sage needed to refuse the Otakiri Springs water bottling plant. The second is a proposal to extend the waste levy and to introduce mandatory product stewardship schemes for tyres, e-waste, and synthetic greenhouse gases, requiring the companies who import or produce these products to clean up their own mess. There's consultation to be done first - in the latter case, as a statutory requirement - but I think we can be confident that they'll actually make it into actual policy. As for the impact, stopping foreign water bottlers from pillaging our water and forcing some polluters to clean up their own messes are relatively minor things, but still welcome and worth doing. And hopefully they'll establish some useful policy directions which can be built on later.