Great work from Alison Horn on behalf of FOM. And Matt Lawrey please keep on asking the Nelson City Councilt tough questions about swimmability of the Maitai. The presentation also covered those pesky plastic parking tickets, the councils new environmental hotline 0800POLLUTE (great news), and the treatment of wastewater at MTB hubs.
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Calls for better signage to prevent tourist’s rubbish behaviour in Nelson
By HANNAH BARTLETT
A Nelson environmental group is requesting new signage to stop uninformed visitors dumping diesel and waste in Nelson’s waterways.
In September, a group of tourists were seen siphoning unwanted diesel into a stormwater drain.
Alison Horn from Friends of the Maitai spoke to councillors on Thursday and said more information could be provided to visitors.
“We request signage to help tourists dispose of detergent, teeth cleaning waste and general rubbish in the correct manner,” she said.
“This signage could include a reminder that disposal systems here may not be the same as those overseas.
“We also suggest more school children’s art around the drains showing the connection between the drains and our waterways.”
She suggested artwork similar to that in other parts of the city, depicting sea life, which would help signal the connection between waterways and the environment. She suggested the council communicate issues around water in any freedom camping visitor information.
Following an investigation earlier this year, the council’s group manager of strategy and environment Clare Barton said the tourist responsible for the diesel dump was under the impression stormwater drains were filtered, as they were in his home country.
It’s understood the tourists were from France and hadn’t realised the diesel would end up in waterways.
“On being informed of his error he was fully co-operative and remorseful,” Barton said.
The council issued a warning letter and recovered costs from the tourists, but the visitors were not fined or charged for breaching the Resource Management Act.
“Due to the prompt actions of members of the public, BP staff, emergency services and council’s contractors, no diesel reached the waterways, Barton said at the time.