Wairarapa wants storage lakes, says MP

By Andrew Bonallack editor@age.co.nz -
6 comments
Wairarapa water storage lakes was a topic broached at regular Q&A session hosted by Wairarapa MP Alastair Scott in Masterton. PHOTO/ANDREW BONALLACK
Wairarapa water storage lakes was a topic broached at regular Q&A session hosted by Wairarapa MP Alastair Scott in Masterton. PHOTO/ANDREW BONALLACK

Wairarapa MP Alastair Scott has said he believes Wairarapa wants water storage lakes, even if "quite a noisy crowd" does not see it that way.

The topic came up for discussion during Mr Scott's regular get-together sessions in Masterton and Carterton yesterday, with older citizens invited for two hours of questions and answers at the Frank Cody Lounge and Carterton Event Centre.

At the Masterton session, Mr Scott said he was a supporter of the Wairarapa Water Use Project and the two proposed storage lakes at Black Creek and Tividale.

He believes the project has a "huge amount of benefit, but some people don't see it that way.

"And they are quite a powerful group, and I have to listen to them as well, and convince them the benefits outweigh the costs."

He told the audience of 18 people that a Member of Parliament had to have a view on projects like this.

"I don't represent those who disagree with me," he said.

"I can't represent someone who thinks it's black against someone who thinks it's white.

"I have to have a view, I can't sit on a fence.

"I will agree with an idea I think is a good idea."

He said projects like the lakes could take "years and years" to bring the community along.

"You can't just slap a bit of concrete down and flood a valley these days," he said. "I believe Wairarapa wants water storage, despite there being quite a noisy crowd that doesn't want it."

Our MMP voting system made things different these days, said Mr Scott.

"The Government and the opposition have to appeal to the middle ground, not the right, not the left, and most people are sitting in the middle. With National Party policy and Labour Party policy, a lot of it is not far away from each other."

Power and heating was also a topic for discussion.

One person wanted to know why the Government was not promoting solar power more.

But Mr Scott said it was not the Government's role to tell people how to buy power.

He was also not a fan of solar power, or wind power, in small dose, preferring the larger picture.

"Instead of 20 connections, 20 panels, I would have one connection. I would rather see all of us get together, invest in a solar power fund with one panel.

"You see people with small windmills, but it makes much more sense to get together, and put a big windmill up."

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