[27 April/Dairy News]

Dairy company Okawa Limited and earthworks company Greener Earthmoving were convicted and fined for carrying out illegal earthworks in the Mangakaeo Stream, near Otorohanga. The earthworks were over a kilometre in length and caused significant environmental damage. They were in breach of the Resource Management Act. Judge Melanie Harland stated that a further warning to the farming and earthmoving industry should be signalled and the need for caution when excavating waterbodies had still not been fully appreciated. Hamilton District Council’s Investigations Manager, Patrick Lynch, said that on this occasion a farm owner engaged a contractor to carry out maintenance on his property. He added that there were clear restrictions on what can and cannot be done in and around fresh water streams in the region.