by john west | Oct 7, 2014 | Uncategorized
Hydrocarbons are found in oil. We burn them polymerise them turn them into pharmaceuticals paints explosives and plastics. Virtually everything not made of wood, animal skins, stone or metal has oil at its source. Crude oil and gas are important to our society but what costs are we prepared to pay to maintain supplies? I watched John Key on the TV programme Campbell live this evening. He appeared to be softening us up, manufacturing consent so that we are happy to let loose our rats of war. We’ll hold back the full sized dogs because after all New Zealand is a small country. The justification used by Mr Key ( Prime Minister New Zealand) was the need to intervene and stop savage beheadings carried out by ISIS. He argued that New Zealanders would probably support a military intervention and he may be right.
We should be clear about our objectives in this endeavour. I want assurance from my Government that any future military involvement in this region has nothing to do with protecting oil pipelines and the hydrocarbons that flow through them.
- Iraq has large productive oilfields
- There are huge oil reserves, the prospective structures on the maps
- There are vulnerable oil pipelines.
Transparency and honesty around objectives for military involvement is essential for informed consent in a democratic process.
The Campbell Live programme on TV3 is a breath of fresh air on New Zealand issues. It is time to apply your undoubted investigative talents to the international scene.
by john west | Sep 29, 2014 | environmental
Dropped on people in New Zealand
I have just watched the Campbell Live programme. It contained a report on problems suffered by two Reefton women caught in the bush as 1080 poison rained from the sky last summer(NZ Herald).
1080 is highly toxic to mammals and insects. It disrupts our biology. in particular a complex process known as the Krebs cycle which releases energy to keep cells alive. Once 1080 molecules enter a cell they rapidly stop the Krebs cycle dead.
It follows that body organs with high energy needs, in particular the brain, heart and lungs are at risk. Exposure to 1080 could damage organs without being fatal. This is euphemistically referred to as a sublethal dose. You won’t drop dead on the spot but you may be damaged for the rest of your life. My concern with the situation reported is that inhalation of dust could have delivered a sub lethal but potentially harmful dose of 1080.
What about people who work in the 1080 industry? How are they protected from this highly toxic material as they formulate and deliver the deadly green pellets. They are protected by regulations which require them to take precautions.
Quoting from The Use of 1080 for pest control (July 2004 a discussion document) Procedures and Standard for use.
“Strict codes of practice require that appropriate protective protective clothing is worn by all those involved in the manufacture and handling of 1080.
“Under these procedures wearing protective equipment such as gloves and overalls is compulsory when handling 1080 in bulk. Respirators and eye protection are also required when handling 1080 in large quantities such as during aerial operations.”
Which brings me to why I think we have let sisters Gwen Gardner and Kathleen Bartlett from Reefton down. Great caution is required to ensure minimal contact with 1080. Dropping a bucket load on unsuspecting picnickers is an unforgivable error. If you can’t guarantee the absence of humans in the drop zone then you shouldn’t drop. Relying on a few inadequate signs is morally unacceptable and criminally negligent.