Friday, 30 January 2009

Anti Stadium March - Surfers Invite

Got a text from Tony this arvo, who is organising the voice of Dunedin surfers to march with the rally organised by the 'Stop the Stadium Trust".
Wear your wetsuit for the march, there will be a banner saying something along the lines of
DCC sort your SHIT out first
Leave 12 noon from the Dental school to the Octagon Saturday 31st January
I hope to see as many surfers there as possible who are against public funding for the proposed covered Stadium.
I sure as hell didn't vote for any of the councillors or mayoral candidates who were pro stadium. Interesting that only one councillor who voiced herself as against was voted in.. Teresa Stevenson has all my support, especially up against **** like Fliss Butcher.
We do live in a democracy, and the current council were voted in by Dunedinites, so what to do? Thanks

Kiwi Crew invited to The Fry


Upcoming event on the Gold Coast. Non competitive and non commercial gathering of Fish shapers and surfers.

Tuesday, 27 January 2009

New Label - Sewage Issues

There have been many reports, debates and issues arising in the last few months over the Sewage Issues related to the Tahuna Outfall and Lawyers head effluent discharges.
I have created a new keyword - Sewage Issues on this blog under "Blog Contents" with articles from newspapers and events as they happen. Today I have included more articles from the ODT which both invite debate and inform.

ODT 26th May 1908


The sewage of the city was discharged direct into the Pacific Ocean through the Lawyer's Head tunnels for the first time yesterday.

For some time past, pending the completion of the main tunnel and the branches leading there, the sewage from the Musselburgh pumping station has been discharged on to the beach in the vicinity of Lawyer's Head, making this favourite resort a less desirable locality to visit than it was formerly.

The sands of the beach, however, provided excellent filtration, and the pollution of the waters was not by any means so serious as might be supposed.

With the completion of the tunnelling beneath Lawyer's Head, however, the necessity for the undesirable practice of discharging sewage on to a public place of health resort has been entirely done away with, and the sewage is now discharged direct into the ocean at two points in the rocky facing of Lawyer's Head.

The main tunnel at Lawyer's Head is 860ft 6in in length, and terminates at an air shaft from which two bifurcating 4ft tunnels diverge to the right and left in south-east and south-west directions until the ocean is reached.

The amount of sewage to be discharged daily by means of four hours' pumping is 348,000 cubic feet, equal to 37,000 cubic feet per hours.

Undersea concrete pour achieved

By Allison Rudd on Sat, 18 Oct 2008
It sounds impossible: Take enough concrete to pour the bases of eight family homes, pump it 250m and fill a large hole 9m below the surface of the Pacific Ocean.

But contractors working on the Dunedin City Council Tahuna sewage outfall pipe did just that successfully yesterday.

Specialist staff from AAA Concrete Pumping were brought in from Marlborough and Queenstown to pump 190 cubic metres of concrete along the length of the construction pier and into an underwater steel structure.

The resulting concrete block will securely hold in place two outfall pipes - an underground pipe laid from the Tahuna sewage treatment works and a 1km long marine pipe - to enable a short joiner pipe to be placed between them.

It was important to "hold things together", council project manager Brian Turner said yesterday.

"The pipes will join approximately 9m below the surface and 5m below the seabed, so this is the most critical area to get right."

Pumping began at 7am and was finished by 2pm.

The job was the most challenging AAA Concrete Pumping had attempted, administration manager Paula O'Donnell said yesterday.

"The distance was the farthest we have ever done . . . What the guys did takes a lot of skill, but it all went very smoothly."

The $37 million pipe project has been delayed by rough weather, but Mr Turner said pressure testing was expected to take place next month, with the pipe expected to be commissioned in December.

Saturday, 24 January 2009

Feminine Force


Above Tash Civil. below Kim.

Above Hayley, Below Jean - awesome to see you back in Dunedin

Above left: Hayley, and right, unknown learner.

Friday, 23 January 2009

A Basic Service

From the Otago Daily Times - Friday 23rd January 2009

It is not surprising the pollution of premier Dunedin beaches St Kilda and St Clair causes such a big stink. The fouling makes the beaches unusable under certain conditions, and is an appalling local and national advertisement. Dunedin, with its wildlife, natural beauty, and history, cannot even keep its own effluent from its own front door step.

All that is about to change because commissioning is taking place of the $37 million, 1.1km outfall from Tahuna. While a $67 million secondary treatment plant is to follow, the outfall alone is expected to make a big difference to the immediate problems.

Dunedin's waste from the main metropolitan area at present passes through the Tahuna plant, where screening takes place. It then, still with plenty of pathogens on board, discharges from Lawyers Head. With unfavourable winds and seas the plume of pollution washes back along the beaches, an event that happens far too often, especially in the summer months.

Even worse, every few years fats accumulated in the system are flushed out and can thickly coat the sand when heavy rains follow a long dry spell and the sea flows the "wrong" way.

The "primary" treated effluent (about 46 million litres a day) is now beginning to flow through the new outfall pipe and diffuse and disperse into reasonably deep (20m to 25m) water.

Given prevailing currents, any remaining material should drift northeast rather than southwest back on to the beaches. Council staff, the people of Dunedin and especially surfers and swimmers will certainly be hoping that this is so.

In the meantime, the council will be testing the effectiveness of the dispersal in the sea and on the shoreline before proceeding to the next stage to chlorinate the effluent.

The outfall had been due for completion late in 2007 and, after weather and technical difficulties, its commissioning is not before time.

Many in the council had believed that the outfall and the planned level of treatment should be enough. The dumping of sewage after only primary treatment into the ocean at any distance, however, arouses much concern and opposition.

For its part, the Otago Regional Council, in its resource consent role, insisted on secondary treatment. The city, therefore, had no choice but to push ahead with this. Planning is under way, the new plant will also be at Tahuna, and completion is scheduled for September 2011. The advanced treatment will squeeze more sludge from the sewage and treat it with ultraviolet rays. Ideally, the sewage would be treated to far higher levels - and we would be happy to drink the results. That, though, would incur vast expense, well beyond the capabilities of a small city like Dunedin. As it is, the cost of the new scheme per household already exceeds that estimated for the Otago Stadium.

Householders in an average (mean) property in Dunedin are, according to council estimates - and with about 9% interest being charged - expected to be faced with an extra $66 a year over a 20-year loan for the council's share of stadium capital costs. That would fall to about $57 for the householders in a median-value (the middle of the range) property. The most expensive properties would pay much more and the cheapest less. Yet the combined effect on the rates of the new sewage outfall and plant capital costs over a 20-year loan (also at 9% interest, although this shows signs of falling considerably) would be about $85 a household a year. Unlike the stadium costs, drainage and sewage would not be combined with council company profits and losses, denying the opportunity for tax savings. Sewerage costs also differ in they they are collected as fixed charges for each house (rather than on capital value), meaning homes all pay the same.

The cost of the pipeline and the secondary treatment could then rise above $100 a year once all the extra yearly operating costs are taken into account. The stadium figures also exclude any operating losses the stadium might make and which ratepayers, one way or another, might be forced to bear. There remains, too, a potentially costly sting in the tail of secondary treatment, for work is still proceeding on the most effective, economic and environmentally acceptable way of dealing with all the extra "sludge" which will be produced. Burning it - a common solution - has obvious disadvantages; fertiliser production options have severe drawbacks; and dumping is unsatisfactory.

Dunedin is long overdue in dealing to its disgraceful beach pollution, and few should begrudge what must be seen as a heavy impost to provide a basic and essential service.

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Some other shots


Miscellaneous shots from the last few weeks, undeserving of their own post.. ( well some maybe). Above, a full double rainbow taken outside my front gate, was even more stunning than the photo. Below, a few weeks back, strong offshores.

Below three, I was at Blackhead carpark, and a guy was doing a photo shoot of this car for a car mag, so I joined in had a great time talking to the guys about mag rates and the industry. nice car too!

Above, a silvery day.

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

No extra testing of water at beaches

From the Otago Daily Times
By Chris Morris on Tue, 20 Jan 2009

There are no plans to increase the frequency of water quality tests at Dunedin's beaches despite concerns swimmers could - in extreme circumstances - risk contracting hepatitis A, officials say.

Public Health South medical officer of health Dr Marion Poore spoke to the manager of Surf Life Saving Otago yesterday after concerns were raised some club members were falling ill after swimming at St Kilda and St Clair beaches. The illnesses are blamed on pollution coming from the Lawyers Head sewage outfall pipe, with some surf club members blaming the Dunedin City Council for not confirming high bacteria levels until 24 hours after samples are taken.

The beaches were closed again on Sunday, but reopened yesterday after the latest test results were found to be "satisfactory". Yesterday, Dr Poore acknowledged the test results were always "24 hours behind the event". "We would love to see instantaneous results . . .The problem is it takes time to do the test and grow the organism, and count the number, and get an idea of the level of risk," she said.

Increasing the testing cycle was an option when a threat to public health was established, but was not being discussed in this case, she said. "That would be costly and the current recommendation is testing once a week. The DCC [Dunedin City Council] tests every 24 hours. "I think 24-hour monitoring is sufficient."

DCC city environment general manager Tony Avery said there were no plans to step up monitoring as it was expected the commissioning of the new 1.1km Tahuna pipeline this week would address the issue. He also questioned whether the surf life-savers' illnesses were linked to the pollution plume from Lawyers Head, suggesting other contagions in the water could be to blame.

Yesterday morning, the switch was flicked to activate the new outfall pipe for the first time. The $37 million scheme involves the 1.1km pipe outfall, as well as a new pump station, chlorination and odour-control facilities at the Tahuna plant. The work - the first of a two-stage upgrade of the plant - began in late 2006, including drilling of a 1500mm underground tunnel from Tahuna out to sea using a tunnel-boring machine. Stage two - expected to be completed sometime in 2011 - involves construction of a $67 million secondary treatment plant, also at the Tahuna site.

Yesterday, the pump station began driving treated sewage down the pipe to mix and dilute with the sea water, while staff conducted a series of flow tests to check its operation as part of the commissioning process. The testing is expected to continue until tomorrow when the plant will be shut down for final adjustments, before becoming fully operational from next week. Underwater and shoreline monitoring - including water quality tests and checks on shellfish - will also be carried out. "Once we get everything stabilised we will then be looking at what happens environmentally and how well the system is diffusing and dispersing the waste water," said the project manager, Brian Turner.

Stage one was originally scheduled for commissioning in December 2007.

Monday, 19 January 2009

Ocean Beach Spews more


Two front page articles in two months. Probably another 4-5 years until a secondary sewage treatment plant is in operation. More and more people are falling ill with infections and sickness from raw sewage pumped from lawyers head. I have my fingers crossed that the 67 million is still available and enough to remedy this appalling situation once and for all. Definately a better monitoring system is needed.. Any suggestions?

Sunday, 18 January 2009

Krill season

Below and last photo, Jake Barton.

Above left, Hayley, right: Krill in a footprint on the sand. (forgot to change the year on my template) A few days ago the ocean was chocca with Krill.. the seagulls were lining the beach feeding up on the washups

Saturday, 17 January 2009

The Roxy Womens Canterbury Champs


..are on again over the weekend of the 14th and 15th February in Christchurch.
You can Download the entry form here from the SISA website.

Always an excellent well run event, the last two years the surf has been maccas. Me and Hayley are going up again this year, can't wait! This is a video of stills I put together from last years' trip:

Music by local legendary surf band Shakes and the Swell Guys performing Tonys' Dream.

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Proposed Dairy Farm Porpoise Bay

disturbing news from the deep south.
Liz and Dave have mounted a very strong campaign to make others aware of a proposed Dairy farm conversion on land in the Porpoise Bay area. They are highly motivated to gain maximum support for the cause. Many of you have been on email lists with updates over the last weeks, but for those unaware here is an outline of the situation>
Below is a media release by them to the citizens of the land and sea.

“South Coast Dairy Limited has purchased land on the Haldane Curio Bay Rd, with settlement due 31st March 2009. We are proposing to convert this land from a sheep & beef farm to a dairy operation milking 400 cows”
(Note – the application to council subsequently mentioned intention to purchase additional land in the future and farm up to 750 cows)

The above statement is the opening sentence of a letter sent to us by South Coast Dairy Limited, explaining their intentions. We received this letter, as did other neighboring land owners, because this dairy conversion is regarded as a “discretionary activity” and therefore Resource Consents are required. As part of the process of getting the necessary Resource Consents, affected parties such as us are required to be notified and asked to sign consent forms to give our approval.

We have not signed the forms despite being asked 3 times by one of the directors as we believe this activity will have a more detrimental effect on the general Porpoise Bay and Curio Bay environment than the current traditional sheep/beef farming operations in the area. The eastern boundary of the dairy farm is only 1km from Porpoise Bay (approximately) and the effluent ponds will be positioned approximately 1.5km from Porpoise Bay. Cooks Stream forms part of the farm boundary and runs into Porpoise Bay.

Because we have not given our approval, and other landowners also haven’t given their approval, then this application by South Coast Dairy Limited must be publicly notified (Below public Notice newspaper clipping dated 10th January 2009).
This means that anyone can make a submission to the Southland District Council by way of writing a letter, explaining why they oppose the application.

The purpose of this notice is to inform all people who live in the area or who visit the area regularly that once this becomes publicly notified, there are only 20 working days to make submissions to oppose this development. The more submissions that are received, the greater the chance of this development not being allowed to proceed.

We urge you to start thinking about the consequences now and the possible effects that this could have on the future for residents and users of the bay, the real locals of the area i.e. the Hectors Dolphins and Yellow Eyed Penguins, the fish and shellfish, the tourists who visit – many of whom travel to NZ purely to have a Porpoise Bay dolphin experience and the future generations of people who live and travel here.

We are not anti-dairy farms, we simply don’t believe that a dairy farm in such close proximity to Porpoise Bay is in any way an improvement to the environment or will even maintain the status quo, even with maximum adherence to best practice dairy farming methods. Do you want to be saying to your future childrens’ children “we used to be able to swim/surf….there used to be a pod of resident Hectors…it never used to smell like this….look like this….the water used to be clear…we used to fish for….”

You may contact us if you need help with making a submission. You can also contact Environment Southland . If you don’t want to be involved, that’s OK. Everyone has a right to their opinion and that’s what this process is all about.

Liz Hodgson and Dave Burnett, 736 Haldane Curio Bay Rd, RD 1 Tokanui. Ph 03 246 8874.
(Resident surfers). Email:

Make a submission on this resource consent:

The most effective way for you to influence the resource consent process is to make a submission on an application. The Resource Management Act allows any person or organisation to make a submission on any notified application.If you are considering making a submission then you should find out as much as possible about the proposal and its effects.

Make a Submission on a Resource Consent

Making a Submission

Want to make a submission on a this Resource Consent?
Download the Submission Form here

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Gmac surfs 13footer at Pipe

For those following the travels of the 13 foot board that did the NZ tour last year.. the latest update is that it has finally been surfed at Pipe by Garrett McNamara who is keen as to surf it again in the next big swell at 2nd or 3rd reef Pipe. Legendary surf photographer Sean Davey photographed the event which I edited into a short slideshow movie here. Music for the clip is from Dunedins' own music legend Shakes. Randy Rarick has also surf the board at Sunset, his video and review are here.

Monday, 12 January 2009

some swell at last


Saturday, 10 January 2009



Caitlin has been getting a few waves lately.. today she joined the masses at St Clair. She says she prefers to longboard, but loves her Surfline too.

Last week we had our belated house-warming combined with a 40th birthday party. Caity put forward one of her boards for a free-for-all grafitti art session with the Poscas.. with about 12 people contributing to the masterpiece it turned out pretty sick:

Thursday, 8 January 2009

Leroy Rust in SLIDE longboard mag

Leroy also had a feature in the latest SLIDE longboarding magazine
I was stoked to have worked with him on the article and the pics.

Wishing you all the best for the rest of the tour leroy!!

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

mini tubes

Still pretty small all along the coast today, a few small barrels at black to be had though.
Fun in the summer sun.

Above: Homer and Hayley, below a sequence of Tash, awesome to have you back in Dunnos :0)

Above left and below, Homer was just the wave hog today, and above right: Kim.

Monday, 5 January 2009

Leroy Rust


Newspaper clipping from the ODT
Local surfer Leroy Rust is doing the 2009 Hyundai longboard circuit this year, and is currently touring the North Island. He made a dramatic entrance in the first comp at Mount Maunganui making it through to the semis in both the Open and the Under 18 divisions.

Read the results and article from the longboarding section of the website.
And while we're on the subject

Sunday, 4 January 2009

Local Hero

Only got my DScene yesterday, although I'd heard a few days before that Jae had featured on the front page, and there were good beach safety tips for the public included in the writeup of the event. Congrats again Jae.

Thursday, 1 January 2009

New Years Eve 2008


Have a great 2009!
Another year raced by in 2008.
Another year of learning more about the depths of people, relationships, society and most importantly.. myself and how I respond to everything that happens around me. Of enjoying more and more my day job working with the wonderful people at Stepping Stones..
Learning so much more about photography, and my gratefulness to a few whom have mentored me, bought me to my senses and helped me find the joy in my work again.
I am grateful to my family and friends, thank you for your acceptance of me, my periodic insanity and for your support over the year.
Thanks also to the readers of this blog, who occasionally leave comments, email me, and say hello at the beach, it stokes me out more than you can imagine. And for some, I'm fine that you hate what I do.. because you make me love this world more because you are in it to be exactly who you are too.

Above: the last of the sun for 2008, setting at Blackhead beach Dunedin.

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