0                                         25 November 2021

HUTT CITY COUNCIL

 

            Komiti Kaupapa Taiao

Climate Change and Sustainability Committee

 

Minutes of a meeting held in the Council Chambers,
2nd Floor, 30 Laings Road, Lower Hutt on

 Thursday 25 November 2021 commencing at 2.00pm

 

 

PRESENT:

Cr J Briggs (Chair)

Mayor C Barry

 

Deputy Mayor T Lewis

Cr A Mitchell

 

Cr S Rasheed (Deputy Chair)

Cr N Shaw (via audio-visual link)

 

APOLOGIES:                  Cr K Brown and Cr S Edwards

 

IN ATTENDANCE:        Ms A Blackshaw, Director Neighbourhoods and Communities

Ms H Oram, Director Environment and Sustainability

Mr J Scherzer, Head of Climate and Solid Waste

Mr D Burt, Senior Advisor Climate Sustainability

Mr J Kingsbury, Head of Transport (part meeting)

Mr D Uppal, Solid Waste Manager (part meeting)

Ms J Lawson, Reserves Asset Manager (part meeting)

Ms K Stannard, Head of Democratic Services (part meeting)

Ms J Randall, Democracy Advisor

 

 

 

 

PUBLIC BUSINESS

 

 

 

1.       APOLOGIES

Resolved: (Cr Briggs/Deputy Mayor Lewis)                       Minute No. CCASC 21501

“That the apologies received from Cr K Brown and Cr S Edwards be accepted and leave of absence be granted.”

2.       PUBLIC COMMENT

Comments are recorded under the item to which they relate.

3.       CONFLICT OF INTEREST DECLARATIONS    

There were no conflicts of interest.

 

4.       Recommendation to Council - 16 December 2021

Options regarding activities on the site of the closed Wainuiomata Landfill (21/1807)

Speaking under public comment via audio-visual link, Ms Trish Ranstead representing a group of Coast Road Wainuiomata residents asked members to consider the future use of the closed Wainuiomata Landfill site (the site) as a living laboratory.  She added that this would be part of a bigger programme in Wainuiomata to respond to the He Pou a Rangi | Climate Change Commission’s recommendations on methane reductions. She noted methane capture may become mandatory for local authorities.

 

In response to questions from members, Ms Ranstead highlighted the remediation of the site was an opportunity to have tamariki involved and be engaged in meaningful learning opportunities. She said she had been in discussions with the Port Nicholson Block Settlement Trust and Te Manatū Whakahiato Ora | the Ministry for Social Development regarding mentoring programmes and would be seeking external funding. She noted a focus on education was essential to prepare tamariki for a low emissions future. She added local people would lead the living laboratory programme.

 

Speaking under public comment, Mr Wayne Chapman representing Hutt Valley Shooting Association (HVSA) explained the HVSA represented a group of shooting clubs. He said there were approximately 18,000 licensed shooters in the Wellington area with an estimated 25% in Lower Hutt. He advised there was no publicly available area for shooters in the Wellington region. He noted the site was a safe place for shooting and would be able to be developed for national and international events. He highlighted the HVSA had engaged a noise specialist but had not progressed this due to advice from Council officers. He added the conditional approval received from the Wainuiomata Community Board (the Board) in 2014 had now expired.

 

The Head of Climate Change and Sustainability elaborated on the report.

In response to questions from members, the Reserves Asset Manager said she was not aware of any activity from HVSA to progress its consent until 18 months ago. She noted there had been no application from HVSA for a resource consent.  She explained that existing site users had an informal arrangement to use the site and Council had been negotiating with them for a more formal lease. She advised no other Council land was available for the activities of HVSA. She considered that if the site was not planted, weed species would proliferate.

In response to questions from members, the Head of Climate Change and Sustainability said officers had not yet calculated the cost of planting the site. He noted planting on the site could be viable alongside a gas collection/destruction system.  He highlighted that he had not yet assessed how the planting would work. He recognised a safety and risk plan would need to be in place to ensure the cap of the site was protected from activity and there was no visible leachate to endanger site users. He advised a feasibility study would be needed if HVSA was given a lease to use the site since there was potentially a conflict between remediation activities and HVSA activities.

The Chair questioned why those currently using the site were not paying rent. He asked officers that a formal land use lease be arranged with existing users and that the leases be formalised as soon as possible provided their activities were still permitted.

In response to a request from members, the Head of Climate Change and Sustainability advised he would provide members with copies of submissions on the future use of the site that had been received from residents living near the site.  The submissions can be viewed at this link: https://hutt.city/submissionsdec21

Moved: (Cr Briggs/Mayor Barry)

“That the Committee recommends that Council:

(1)     receives and notes the report;

(2)     notes that officers are still investigating the feasibility and cost of establishing a gas collection/destruction system on the site and replanting the site;

(3)     notes that the potential establishment of a gas collection and destruction system and/or replanting of the site, were not included in the Long Term Plan 2021-2023, and additional revenue would be required to fund ongoing costs along with servicing of debt and depreciation if no alternative revenue is identified;

(4)     agrees to continue to allow current activities but disallow new activities not associated with further remediation of the site; and

(5)      agrees that for any activity to continue it must not adversely impact on Council’s ability to carry out further remediation of the site.”

Deputy Mayor Lewis expressed support for option (a) in the report, to continue to allow a mix of activities on the site. She noted this provided the possibility of allowing more activities on the site once a feasibility study had been completed.

Mayor Barry expressed support for the motion. He noted neighbouring properties had already provided feedback on the site and had supported limiting activities. He recognised that officers needed direction so they could progress the work.

Cr Mitchell expressed support for option (a) in the report,  to continue to allow a mix of activities on the site. He considered it premature to rule out activities for the site that might provide opportunities before a feasibility study had been completed. He questioned whether money proposed for revegetating the site might be better spent on afforestation elsewhere.

Cr Shaw expressed support for option (a) in the report,  to continue to allow a mix of activities on the site.  She said it would allow the possibility of other activities not yet under consideration.

Cr Rasheed expressed support for option (a) in the report, to continue to allow a mix of activities on the site.  She agreed there were potentially other opportunities for the site, including tourism.

In his right of reply, the Chair advised the site’s neighbours and the Wainuiomata community had asked for the site to be regenerated in the context of action on climate change. He explained residents had been clear they did not want more activities on the site or more traffic on the road. He advised the issue had been long under debate in the Wainuiomata community. He considered that if a flare was not feasible, the next best option was to regenerate the site rather than turning it into a multipurpose facility. He said a living laboratory project would be an opportunity for the community to learn about climate change in a practical way. He highlighted the project would be community led and would not be purely reliant on Council for funding.

The motion was declared LOST on the voices.

MOVED: (Cr Mitchell/Cr Rasheed)

“That the Committee recommends that Council:

(1)     receives and notes the report;

(2)     notes that officers are still investigating the feasibility and cost of establishing a gas collection/destruction system on the site and replanting the site;

(3)     notes that the potential establishment of a gas collection and destruction system and/or replanting of the site, were not included in the Long Term Plan 2021-2023, and additional revenue would be required to fund ongoing costs along with servicing of debt and depreciation if no alternative revenue is identified;

(4)     defers any decision on any change to activities on the site until officers have reported back on the feasibility and cost of establishing a gas collection/destruction system on the site and replanting the site; and

(5)     agrees that, if either option a) or b) is chosen, for any activity to continue or go ahead it must not adversely impact on Council’s ability to carry out further remediation of the site.”

The Chair spoke against the motion.  He considered it would require more officer time to work on proposals that had already taken significant time and had an opportunity to be developed before now.  He asked officers to provide additional information on the gas capture.  He believed that deferring the matter would give the community less certainty, potentially resulting in the community losing impetus to take positive action around climate change.  He noted that the Board, on behalf of the community, had expressed support for option (b).

Mayor Barry spoke against the motion.  He expressed disappointment that the motion to agree option (b) had been lost. He noted Council had already engaged with local residents regarding the site, and that residents had provided their feedback. He added the community had asked to take ownership of the site to allow for a climate focussed education approach.  He considered a resolution to defer a decision would create frustration in the community. 

Deputy Mayor Lewis spoke against the motion.  She added more information on officers’ ideas for the future direction of the site would have been helpful.  She advised that after listening to the debate,  she was swayed by the community’s feedback.

Cr Rasheed suggested it would be helpful for members to receive copies of the submissions.

Mayor Barry agreed with Cr Rasheed’s comment and asked that members be provided with the actual submissions.

The meeting adjourned at 2.55pm and reconvened at 3.05pm.

The motion was declared LOST on the voices.

Members noted the Council meeting on 16 December 2021 would provide all Councillors with an opportunity to discuss other options.

As there was no resolution reached, the Chair moved option (c) to disallow any current or new activities not associated with further remediation of the site.  The motion was seconded by Mayor Barry.

The motion was declared CARRIED on the voices.

ReCOMMENDED:  (Cr Briggs/Mayor Barry)           Minute No. CCASC 21502

“That the Committee recommends that Council:

(1)   receives and notes the report;

(2)   notes that officers are still investigating the feasibility and cost of establishing a gas collection/destruction system on the site and replanting the site;

(3)   notes that the potential establishment of a gas collection and destruction system and/or replanting of the site, were not included in the Long Term Plan 2021-2023, and additional revenue would be required to fund ongoing costs along with servicing of debt and depreciation if no alternative revenue is identified; and

(4)   disallows any current or new activities not associated with further remediation of the site.”

 

5.

Whaitua te Whanganui-a-Tara: Whaitua Implementation Reports (21/1867)

Report No. CCASC2021/5/269 by the Senior Advisor Climate and Sustainability

 

Ms Louise Askin and Mr Sam Kahui, Co-Chairs of the Whaitua te Whanganui a Tara Committee (Whaitua Committee) and Mr Tim Sharp, Programme Manager from Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) were in attendance for the item.

Ms Askin explained the Whaitua Implementation Programme (WIP) set a direction to stop the declining water quality and provided recommendations to regional local authorities to improve Te Mana o Te Wai.  She said the WIP had set staged water quality parameters in different catchments over time. She acknowledged the range of challenges that lay ahead. She noted the approach would require a paradigm shift for local authorities and collaboration from the community and Mana Whenua, to ensure Te Mana o Te Wai was given priority over development rights.

Mr Kahui explained that Te Mahere Wai report was a collaborative report produced alongside the community and provided a uniquely Mana Whenua view. He highlighted the importance of mahinga kai and mana whakahaere being recognised through Te Mana o Te Wai. He advised it was essential to involve Mana Whenua in discussions to give expression to these. He noted government’s National Policy Statement on Freshwater Management had strengthened Te Mana o Te Wai and that regional plan changes would make Whaitua Committee recommendations enforceable.

In response to questions from members, Mr Kahui said Council could commence by connecting with existing river protection groups and Mana Whenua to develop a master plan to work together towards the same goal. He said the Whaitua Committee had recommended a reference group be established to follow-up with local authorities and recommended that GWRC worked with local authorities and reported back annually on the progress of the recommendations.

In response to a question from a member,the Programme Manager from GWRC said local authorities had the ability to use their District Plan to minimise water use and ensure that urban designers were required to minimise impacts on water ways. He confirmed GWRC would be working closely with local authorities and any Three Waters entity that might be created.

 

Resolved: (Cr Briggs/Deputy Mayor Lewis)                  Minute No. CCASC 21503

“That the Committee:

((1)  notes the ‘Whaitua Implementation Programme’ report, available at https://www.gw.govt.nz/assets/Whaitua-Te-Whanganui-a-Tara/Te-Whaitua-te-Whanganui-a-Tara-Implementation-Programmeweb.pdf and

((2)  notes the ‘Te Mahere Wai’ report, which is the implementation plan produced by the Mana Whenua Committee members (Te Kāhui Taiao),  available at https://www.gw.govt.nz/assets/Whaitua-Te-Whanganui-a-Tara/temaherewai20211028v32DIGIFINAL.pdf.”

6.

Submission to Ministry for Environment consultation (21/1875)

Report No. CCASC2021/5/270 by the Senior Advisor Climate and Sustainability

 

Resolved: (Cr Briggs/Cr Rasheed)                                       Minute No. CCASC 21504

“That the Committee:

(1)   receives and notes the report;

(2)   agrees to the submission on the Ministry for the Environment’s consultation document
‘Te hau mārohi ki anamata Transitioning to a low-emissions and climate-resilient future’ as attached as Appendix 1 to the report; and

(3)   agrees that the submission will be sent by the Chair of the Climate and Sustainability Committee.”

7.

Update on Council's solid waste and waste minimisation work (21/1635)

Report No. CCASC2021/5/271 by the Solid Waste Manager

 

In response to a question from a member, the Solid Waste Manager advised Council’s  Communications Team was creating promotional material to advertise the new hazardous waste drop-off point at Silverstream Landfill.  He said the promotion would commence over the next two weeks.

 

Resolved: (Cr Briggs/Cr Mitchell)                                       Minute No. CCASC 21505

“That the Committee receives and notes the update on various solid waste management and minimisation matters.”

8.

Eastern Bays Shared Path - Project Update (21/1874)

Report No. CCASC2021/5/140 by the Head of Transport

 

Resolved: (Cr Briggs/Cr Rasheed)                                       Minute No. CCASC 21506

“That the Committee:

 

(1)   notes and receives the report; and

(2)   notes that Council approved the Eastern Bays Shared Path project to be integrated into the
Te Ara Tupua Alliance at its meeting on held on 1 November 2021.”

9.

Update on Council's climate change work (21/1634)

Report No. CCASC2021/5/272 by the Head of Climate and Solid Waste

 

The Head of Climate Change and Sustainability advised that an update to Council’s organisational carbon footprint report (the report) was expected to be available next week.

In response to a question from a member, the Head of Climate Change and Sustainability agreed to provide the report to members.  He cautioned members against comparing the data directly with Council’s previous organisational carbon footprint since the updated report had used different sources. He added figures had also been adjusted according to updated Intergovernmental Panel on climate change predictions. He highlighted that Council’s organisational carbon footprint had reduced.

 

Resolved: (Cr Briggs/Deputy Mayor Lewis)                       Minute No. CCASC 21507

“That the Committee notes the update on various climate change work streams.”

10.

Climate Change and Sustainability Committee Work Programme 2021-2022 (21/1574)

Report No. CCASC2021/5/141 by the Democracy Advisor

 

Members asked for two additional reports to be included in the work programme for the first meeting of the committee in 2022:

·      A community climate change response plan (road map); and

·      An update on deer culling in Lower Hutt.

Cr Mitchell noted that since deer culling would begin in April or May 2022 a work plan for the culling would be required for the first meeting of 2022.

 

Resolved: (Cr Briggs/Cr Mitchell)                                       Minute No. CCASC 21508

“That the work programme be received and noted.”

11.     QUESTIONS

There were no questions.

 

 

There being no further business the Chair declared the meeting closed at 3.43pm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

J Briggs

CHAIR

 

 

 

 

CONFIRMED as a true and correct record

Dated this 16th day of December 2021