Posted by: Matthew | August 16, 2010

Rural people need clean air too

One of the reasons people move away from the suburbs is that the suburbs are polluted. That’s why I moved away from Raumati South. I was searching for a cleaner place to live with fresh air. I made a mistake in moving to a “rural” zone of Kapiti. It’s not always smoke free. The amount of burning off that goes on in Kapiti is sometimes horrendous. Yet if one complains about it to the KCDC they’ve got staff that will tell you that people in “rural” zones have a right to burn off (and hence pollute) and I should expect it, and that I should just put up with it. What a complete load of absolute rubbish. I should ask for, and get, clean air. The KCDC should defend the right of all of its citizens to the same clean air no matter where in the district they live. The KCDC fails “rural” folk with its slack burn-off rules, just like it fails suburbanites with its non-existant clean air policy about woodburners.

The KCDC deems any burning off that is greater than 40 metres from a boundary to be far enough. Smoke does not stop after 40 metres by magic. The KCDC issues burn off permits. They have conditions that say that no smoke or odour nuisance may be caused by the burn off. The permit conditions are rarely adhered too, and when it is pointed out that a burn off fire is causing smoke and odour nuisance bey0nd the boundary, they ignore the complaint. When the fire is unattended they’ll ignore the complaint. When the fire is not extinguished before dark they’ll ignore that complaint too.

What should happen of course is those permits should be revoked. And that is if they should have ever been issued in the first place. And if a neighbour objects to a burn off fire then that neighbour should have the right of veto over it.

As for what the KCDC actually does, which is sweet F.A. that is their deriliction of duty. That is the failure to do their job correctly. Why is it so hard to get the KCDC to do their job properly? Rural people need clean air too. Our lungs are the same as other people’s. And where in suburban sprawl Kapiti are there really any rural zones anyway?

I hope the new councillors when they get elected can affect some real change. At the moment the KCDC is failing it’s residents.

I don’t want to be polluted by woodsmoke, but the KCDC doesn’t care what I think. They’re too busy defending the polluters.

Why should I have to put up with any woodsmoke at all?

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