Positive change takes patience
In today’s connected and fast paced world we often expect instant results. But genuine and lasting change takes time, patience and collective will.
My colleagues and I at the Palmerston North City Council are committed to bringing about positive long-term change for the city.
This is reflected in our proposed new vision: small city benefits, big city ambition.
Reaching our potential won’t happen overnight. But it will happen over time if we engage with the issues, support our community leaders, work collaboratively, and recognise the cumulative impact of small wins.
Let’s take the example of the Manawatu River. To realise our vision we must play our part in improving the water quality by creating the best wastewater solution for our city. The reality is there’s no fast way to do this.
Our current wastewater consent requires us to apply for a new consent by June 2022. Council recently adopted a statement of intent that aims to have a decision on the best option for the city no later than December 2020.
This gives us time to investigate the options and consult with community and iwi.
The next step is to identify a range of options for the future scheme which will include river based disposal, land based disposal, or a mixture of both. A project group has been established to guide the development of these options and lead our community engagement. And that’s where you come in.
Like all our big projects, we want to work with you to find the best solution. We need you to be active citizens who think not just about yourselves, but about future generations. We need you to support the leaders within your own communities who can be your collective voice.
Perhaps most importantly, we need you to take part in smaller scale actions today that will make a difference in the future- like using planet-friendly cleaning products, washing your car on your lawn, and not tipping paint and other chemicals into our drains.
Improving our river is a big job, but it’s a job we can do. There are countless inspiring success stories from the smallest streams to London’s mighty Thames. All around the world community voices are turning into community action and political will, and together we can join the ranks of cities that enjoy successfully restored rivers.
What is true for helping our river is true in so many areas of our community. Whatever the opportunities and challenges we pursue it takes real effort to bring about lasting change. I urge you to get involved with what’s going on in our city, and to play your part in making our vision a reality. Change takes time, but together we can achieve a lot.
HAVE YOUR SAY
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Operations manager Mike Monaghan at Palmerston North’s Awapuni Waste Water Treatment Plant.