Raumati South is definitely polluted, and you can see the results of the 10 week study at the Greater Wellington Regional Council site here: Raumati South air quality study. This site has been completely vindicated and pointed out that Raumati South is intolerably polluted for over a year. I should know as I moved away from the area due to the woodsmoke.
In 10 weeks the national guideline of PM10 was exceeded twice. The national guidelines are very, very lax. It allows one annual exceedence of the 50 micrograms of PM10s per cubic metre of air, and that is averaged over a 24 hour average. Well there were two in 10 weeks. And if you look at the 12 hour averages it was as high as 97.5.
There are some things that can be learnt from the results findings: One is that the 24 hour averaging hides real peaks in the data. Just because people tend not to use their woodburners when they aren’t there for the day why should it mean that they can pump more shit into the atmosphere under the cover of darkness?
And shocking as the results are (they weren’t unexpected) the air quality was only a little over the guidelines, but I couldn’t live there. So if the allowable standards are set at such a high level of allowable pollution that people turn into environmental refugees then there is something wrong with the standards and the standards need fixing.
The GWRC have said they were surprised with the non-compliance because of the relatively low density of burners in the measured area, but it should come as no surprise, as it just takes one stinky fire to ruin a whole neighbourhood and there are dozens of them in Raumati South.
And if you live in Raumati South you’ve got a neighbour burning arsenic treated wood. Does anybody know who that bastard is? Report them to the GWRC Pollution hotline please.
So what is the plan going forward? Where is the immediate action?
Of course there should be further monitoring. But there also needs to be immediate mitigating effects. It does not suffice to tell people once again how they should be burning clean. They have proven they can’t. It is time to start banning their use. It is also time for the KCDC to prohibit the installation of new heaters.
Not only should all open fires should be banned in Kapiti. All wood burners should be banned too.
It is time for the National Party not to be two-faced hypocrites when it comes to tightening the standards. If they can’t help New Zealanders not have shit air to breath then really it is time for Environment Minister Nick Smith to resign.
At least one source of Raumati South particulate pollution will be disappearing soon from this story at the Dumb Post:
Couldn’t we just leave these old buggers alone and suggest they install a heatpump?
Where is the NZHHA on this? Why are they not asking their customers not to use their products? Why are they not offering the poor people of Raumati South their money back for their clearly crap products. I mean all this pollution is coming out of their woodburners? There should be a recall of all the woodburners in all the polluted districts of New Zealand. Why did the NZHHA member companies sell and install such crap polluting products in the first place? Where was the local government oversight that prevented them from doing anything so stupid? Why is it now left up to other people and the regional council to clean up the mess?
Raumati South – Beautiful One Day – Polluted the Next.