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I/V w/ Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage on Fox River clean up: August 14, 2019

I/V w/ Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage on Fox River clean up: August 14, 2019

I/V w/ Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage on Fox River clean up: August 14, 2019 I/V w/ Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage on Fox River clean up: August 14, 2019, 4.46 MB
Wednesday, August 14, 2019

The Fox River debacle has been slowly and steadily coming to an end. You may remember the severe flooding that occurred in the Southland region which caused the river to overflow, and a landfill to flood. This meant that all that rubbish was then strewn along the river for kilometres. What followed was tension between national and local government. Local government said they didn’t have enough money to clean it up, national government said the local government's hadn’t planned well enough. And during this time, there weren’t enough hands on board to do the literal clean up. In the end, volunteers took it into their own hands, along with the NZ Defence Force and DOC. Because there was also a race against the Spring rains which might make the damage worse. And, more generally, DOC director general Lou Sanson said that climate change will make this sort of disaster a lot more likely. Finally, two days ago it was announced that protecting the river from future rubbish spills could cost the Westland District Council up to 2.8 million dollars. So, Rachel Simpson spoke with Eugenie Sage, the Minister for Conservation, and started by asking why so many people volunteered to help out.