DUMPING ON TITIRANGI
Fly-tipping on Titirangi/Kaiti Hill has drawn an outcry from biodiversity team Whaia Titirangi, who want access to the maunga closed between 7pm and 7am.
A status update on Whaia Titirangi's Facebook page on Monday showed photos of rubbish dumped on the hill over the weekend. This included a blue Subaru hatchback left down a bank on the Endcliffe Road side.
Kaitiaki (guardians) discovered more rubbish on the same side of the hill on Thursday morning.
The rubbish included baby clothing, microwave ovens, televisions, rubbish bags full of nappies, blankets and clothing good enough to be given away. Boxes of used syringes and nitrous canisters were also among the items.
Ngati Oneone chair Charlotte Gibson said tangata whenua were gutted and that it was not just isolated to Titirangi.
“It happens everywhere. Up the Coast, Graeme Atkins (Department of Conversation ranger) is dealing with rubbish down riverbanks and on the beaches. Rubbish has been dumped directly into the Kopuawhakapata stream too. What is the answer to fixing this?”
The Whaia Titirangi crew were disheartened by the dumpings.
“If the land becomes sick then so do we,” the team said on their Facebook post. “It's always disheartening to go up the maunga and see more and more dumped rubbish and dumped cars.
“If this continues we won't be able to bring our tamariki up to plant their maunga because of the risks of being cut or injured by broken glass or other rubbish.
“The team have been planting this area and to find rubbish here just shows the lack of appreciation for the maunga and our environment.
“If anyone knows or has seen any suspicious activity on Titirangi please don't hesitate to let either us or the authorities know.”
A petition has been launched on change.org calling for barriers to be erected at both entrances to Titirangi.
The petition states: “We want barriers at both ends of Titirangi Maunga between the hours of 7pm and 7am. This will help —
' Eliminate the dumping of rubbish.
' Stop vehicles driving in the wrong direction.
' Make it safe for those kaitiaki planting on the maunga.
' Make it safe for school groups to participate in projects on the maunga.
' The times could be waived if prior notice is given.”
The petition will be given to Gisborne District Council. As of yesterday afternoon, 539 signatures had been collected.
Mrs Gibson said the issue also came down to personal responsibility and that there needed to be bigger discussions about different ways waste could be collected, or an alternative system.
“We need to find an answer.”
The petition is available to sign at tinyurl.com/hux34wz8