Community groups calling for local action to close the notorious leaching Levin Landfill at Hōkio Beach are ‘encouraged and excited’ by last night’s Horowhenua District Council 7-4 vote in favour of closing the notorious landfill in May-June next year.
Peter Thompson, Spokesperson for Over It – the Horowhenua/Kāpiti campaign to close the Landfill - says it’s “a major step forward and a big win for the environment”. “Our sincere congratulations to the seven councilors who voted for Option 1 (early closure); they’ve signaled that they’re finally listening to the community and have definitely put themselves on the right side of history,” he says.
However, Thompson warns that the ‘battle’ is by no means over and a final Council decision ‘sealing the deal’ will not be made until February.
“Last week’s vote was part of a ‘special consultative process’ the Council was obliged to run because it did not include the Landfill in the recent Long-term Community Plan. They still have to engage in a public consultation over the next few weeks – so it’s important for people to support this strong vote for closure by voting for Option 1.
“Other options could see the landfill stay open until 2025 with a $1.3million new cell being built on the site or, it could even remain open until 2037 when its resource consent runs out.
“What people need to understand is that every day the landfill stays open is another day of environmental abuse,” he says.
While the landfill is temporarily closed Kāpiti and Horowhenua waste is being sent to Bonny Glen – a compliant landfill near Marton. Peter Thompson says public support will help make this a permanent arrangement.