Could Canterbury Blue/Green Hazardous Outbreak Be Traced to Akaroa?

Tuesday 22 February 2011, 9:59AM
By ECan In Exile


The Community and Public Health division of the Canterbury District Health Board have issued a health warning after potentially toxic blue-green algae (benthic cyanobacteria) were found in the Waipara at the Teviotdale Bridge. This is in addition to the warning already in place at Stringers Bridge. Blue / Green outbreaks are a well-known hazard to humans, animals and ecosystems alike. The District Health Board news release did not dentified the source of the outbreak.

The first place ECan in Exile would suggest checking for the source of this toxic blue/green outbreak is Akaroa. A blue/green incident occurred in that area last month. Previous blue/green outbreaks have affected the very organisation, Environment Canterbury, that is now attempting to monitor this outbreak. A major Canterbury blue/green outbreak in mid 2010 dissolved regional democracy in Canterbury. That incident is now so widespread that it is unlikely that it can be contained until 2013 unless beneficial Red Algae and the environmentally friendly Green Algae species can be released sooner to mop up the blue/green free radicals.

However, the opportunity to release beneficial Red and Green species occurs, on average, only once every three years. The first opportunity for such a release comes later this year in late November and ECan in Exile suggests that all New Zealanders use their electoral voting power to ensure such a release.