Minister of Conservation releases 2013 fuel tank audit results 

From the Ruapehu Bulletin 26/5

Audit finds park fuel tanks ‘high risk’

Following the 2013 RAL diesel spill, then Minister of the Environment, Nick Smith, publicly announced a review of all fuel tanks situated on Public

Conservation Land.

Its purpose was to seek an, “assurance that flammable fuel storage on conservation estates was both compliant with legislative and regulatory requirements”, the results proved to be the absolute opposite.

Obtained by the Ruapehu Bulletin under the Official Information Act, the audit revels 71 percent of the fuel storage units failed to comply with safety compliance regulations and 33 percent were even classed as “high risk” to the natural environment.

Of the Department of Conservation [DOC] tanks, 75 percent failed to comply, three had “questionable” secondary containment bunding, two had “absolutely none at all”, and 41 percent were high risk.

Concessionaire’s adherence to safety legislation was also audited with 69 percent failing to comply and 28 percent were classed as a threat to the environment.

Over the last 16 months Partnerships manager Whakapapa, Jono Maxwell has been working alongside DOC staff and Tongariro National Park concessionaires to ensure all fuel tanks in the World Heritage Area are safe.

“We are going to look after our National Park,” he said.

“DOC have one at the [Whakapapa] campsite, that is due for removal any day, I understand it is not being used and is empty.

“We have [also] done our own on-site inspections of the [Iwikau Village] 53 lodges, out of that we found one club which as an underground disused diesel tank and that will be out within the two-year time frame.

“The other RAL tanks are accounted for.

Turoa Tanks

“Coming round to Turoa we are comfortable everything up there is to spec apart from the Massey University Club hut.

“It is empty and disused and they are putting a plan in place for removal and soil testing, which is imminent.”

On the Waiouru side of Mt Ruapehu, Tukino’s Alpine Sports Club, Mountain Clubs Association, Aorangi Ski Club and Desert Alpine Club all own tanks.

Following inspections Mr Maxwell said, “the one in the ground has kitty litter in it and is disused, they are looking at removal this year.

“They are looking at a whole new system for diesel storage ... I’m comfortable (that) within the next year Tukino will be 100% compliant.”

Also a direct result of the audit, nationally DOC have now removed 18, 15 are fully compliant and the department is still working on bringing 23 up to code.

Of the concessioners, work is being carried out on 52, 106 meet safety requirements, 16 have been removed from around the country.

WorkSafe New Zealand’s general manager, High Hazards and Specialist Services, Brett Murray said no official notification of the audit findings had been received. However, currently, there was no legal requirement to do so.

“WorkSafe does not consider an investigation is required but will monitor progress to ensure that the tanks are either made compliant or safely removed. “Depending on the capacity of the fuel storage tank, it is illegal to fill a tank if it does not have a test certificate [if required].

“WorkSafe has reminded DOC of its legal obligations and will provide advice and assistance to DOC where this may be required.”

Green Party conservation spokesperson, Eugenie Sage says the government needs to ensure the proper resourcing of agencies so they can operate to the highest safety standards.

“The high proportion of bulk fuel tanks which don’t comply with the law is unacceptable given the obvious and demonstrated risk to water quality, water supply, and ecological values.

“DOC needs to have vigorous oversight role of storage of fuels and other hazardous substances on conservation land.”

She added the commercial use of public conservation land, especially within national parks was a privilege.

“Companies such as RAL and its contractors need to operate with the highest standards of care.”

Posted by 26 May 2015 17:29:00

Puanga Maunga Karakia 


Tēnā koutou 

Our annual ceremony to acknowledge the maunga and mark the significance of Puanga and Matariki is being held this year on Monday 8 June at Tūroa Ski Field,  Ohākune at 6am

Open to all visitors and our local communities, transport is available again from:

Dempsey Buses Depot, Seddon Street, Raetihi
departing at 4.45am

Maungārongo Marae, Burns Street, Ohākune
departing at 5.00am

We are then scheduled to return by 8.30am after parakuihi (breakfast)

Becuase there are limited numbers RSVP is essential
Please contact Ngāti Rangi Office by Thursday 5th June for transport and catering purposes.
Phone: 06 3859 500 or O800 NRANGI (0800 672 644)

Posted by 25 May 2015 18:24:00

Te Ranga Tupua Iwi Collective welcome Prince Harry 


Ngāti Rangi kuia and Trust chair Kemp Dryden explain the significance of the central plateau's mountains and the Whanganui River to His Royal Highness Prince Harry after a pōwhiri at Putiki Marae last week. Photo: Cass Reid

While crowds flocked to Whanganui to catch a glimpse of Prince Harry, Ngāti Rangi as part of the Te Ranga Tupua Iwi Collective had an unscheduled opportunity to sit down and enjoy morning tea with him.

Hune and Reo Rapana, Cass Reid, Kui Raana Mareikura and Kemp Dryden were at last week's event to welcome his Royal Highness onto Putiki Marae.

After the pōwhiri, Prince Harry sat down with the kuia from the Maunga and the River enquiring if they could help broaden his understanding of the significance of the day's events.

Ngāti Rangi Trust chair Mr Dryden was then invited to join the conversation.

"Kui Raana, affectionately known as Nanny Biddy, and Kui Julie Ranginui shared their special connection to the Maunga and Awa.

"The conversation was about sharing our tradition knowledge.

"Why we do what we do and how we relate to Papatuanuku [mother Earth], to Ranginui [father Above], and everything in between.

"How we've become active kaitiaki [stewards] which includes being the voice of our sacred places."

While acknowledging the significance of today's purpose, Te Awa Tupua, [Whanganui river], Mr Dryden suggested the Prince first needed to understand that all rivers have a source.

"This was continually endorsed by our kuia, it was about providing more context from a cultural lens and perspective.

"My korero was about acknowledging that source."

Ngāti Rangi Trust Chair Kemp Dryden explains the significance of the central plateau's mountains and the Whanganui River to His Royal Highness Prince Harry after a pōwhiri at Putiki Marae last week. Photo: Cass Reid






Posted by 19 May 2015 06:58:00

What are your personal priorities for settlement? 


The negotiations team would like to extend an invitation to iwi members to share their personal priorities for settlement through the Ngāti Rangi Road to Settlement Survey. As we move through the formal steps towards a comprehensive settlement of Ngāti Rangi's claims, the negotiation team would appreciate the opportunity to hear what your personal expectations are.

To take part in the Ngāti Rangi Road to Settlement Survey online  CLICK HERE

If you would prefer a hardcopy version, copies can be downloaded via our website CLICK HERE  or they can be mailed out to you by calling the Ngāti Rangi office on 0800 NRANGI (672 644).

Posted by 13 May 2015 17:42:00

Road To Settlement Pānui #2 

E te iwi, kia ora,

Welcome to our second iwi briefing update on Ngāti Rangi’s negotiations for the settlement of our historical Treaty of Waitangi grievances.

Our collective aspirations are inter-generational, diverse and ambitious and our priorities for redress are broad reaching. This pānui provides an overview of the framework and approach that has been adopted by Ngāti Rangi's negotiation team to guide discussions with the Crown.




Posted by 13 May 2015 16:36:00

Read the latest pānui from GNS Science, Ruapehu Crater Lake starting to cool 


 Mountt Ruapehu’s Crater Lake has started to cool and the level of seismic activity has decreased. The temperature had declined to about 37°C in late April and is now at 34°C. The lake has been in a heating phase which started in late 2014 when the lake was 15°C, reaching a peak of over 40°C in late January–early February 2015.

For more information on the latest Ruapehu activity update from GNS

Posted by 11 May 2015 16:28:00