Town­ies not guilt-free

The Press - - Perspective -

Grant Nel­son (July 28) and oth­ers so quick to lay blame on farm­ers (pre­sum­ably dairy) have ob­vi­ously not lived long enough to wit­ness the mas­sive change in land use in the area that con­sti­tutes the un­der­ground water­shed of the Waimakariri, which once flowed into Lake Ellesmere.

Up un­til the ‘‘Roger­nomics era’’ that wiped out 2-3 gen­er­a­tions of ‘‘na­tures con­ser­va­tors’’, ie fam­ily farms, and wreaked havoc on ru­ral NZ, the area from Ash­ley to Ellesmere was pre­dom­i­nantly fam­ily dairy farms that, along with meat and wool, had been used to fi­nance the build­ing of this coun­try’s ma­jor in­fra­struc­ture, roads/rail, hy­dro, etc.

The then ‘‘un­touch­ables’’ spread their wealth into ‘‘life­style liv­ing’’ – the re­sult of which is now ev­i­dent in the pro­lif­er­a­tion of the thou­sands of life­style pads (many un­eco­nomic), mean­ing there are thou­sands of sep­tic tanks and ur­ban-style waste runoff drain­ing into the aquifers north and north­west of the city. Me­thinks those liv­ing in glasshouses should be very care­ful where they throw their stones. John McCaskey Waipara

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