Greenpeace is calling on DairyNZ and other dairy leadership to stop undermining the efforts of dairy farmers to clean up waterways.
Yesterday, DairyNZ released a three-year report that outlined the mitigation work being done by farmers to minimise the fresh water pollution caused by dairy leaching and runoff.
But Greenpeace campaigner, Genevieve Toop, says the report is a “misleading distraction” from the real problem.
“All the hard work being done by existing dairy farmers to deal with pollution is set to be cancelled out by the huge amount of new intensive dairy farms that will be created under proposed irrigation schemes,” she says.
“Our waterways are already not able to cope with the sheer number of dairy cows in New Zealand. We urgently need to reduce the national herd number and stop big irrigation schemes like the Ruataniwha Dam.
“Until DairyNZ is honest with the public and farmers about the fact that the only way to get clean water is to have fewer cows, they will continue to completely undermine dairy farmers’ mitigation efforts.
“This latest report shows the dairy leadership may have managed to rearrange the deck chairs on the Titanic, but the ship is still sinking thanks to big irrigation.”
Over 75,000 New Zealanders have signed a petition to stop Government funding of irrigation schemes.