The Green Party candidate for Northland is calling for action at all levels to ensure all communities across the region have enough quality drinking water.
Darleen Tana Hoff-Nielsen said as part of the initiative, the Northland Regional Council should stop issuing consents to commercial operators for surface and ground water takes to nourish their avocado orchards.
"We're giving the beautiful water from this amazing aquifer, pushing it out, hydroponically affected over avocados rather than having water for people to drink. Kauri is dying up there because of the drought."
In Kaitaia, she said the NRC was considering applications to give 460 billion litres of water to spray over avocado orchards despite opposition to it.
To hear the Hits host Charmaine Soljak's interview click here
"There's a drought coming to Northland and if you ask any of the district councils what their capacity is like to give people water to drink over the summer, they will tell you water that is coming from Lake Omapere, that water is brackish, it's untreated, it tastes gross.
"Local government needs to change rules to allow people to harvest water in their homes within urban areas. So you as a residential person, if you want to harvest some water, you couldn't get the resource consents to put a water tank at your place to catch water off your roof," Hoff-Nielsen said.
She is against the amalgamation of local councils and pointed to Watercare in Auckland as an example of the restructure of territorial authorities that has not worked.
"What I'd much rather see, particularly with Covid and climate change, is local democratic governance system that is much more agile, and responsive to the needs of the local community.
"Amalgamation is totally in the wrong direction. We need to decentralise more."
Although Hoff-Nielsen admitted she didn't know enough about the proposed moving of Ports of Auckland to Northport, she hasn't seen a business case highlighting the pros and cons of such a move.
Similarly, she doesn't know enough about methamphetamine even though she has close friends and sadly whānau who are sitting on what she'd say is not her side of the fence.
"I think rationally, there's something to be done at the supply side, there's also something to be done on the demand side.
"Why are people going to meth? It's not just the poorest of the poor who are going to meth. Some of my friends who are business workers - suit, white shirt, tie, they are also doing the meth thing," she said.
As with clean water, Hoff-Neilsen said Northlanders should also have access to clean food, the right to have a warm shelter, the right to have energy, and the right to be in community and to live.
She highlighted her party's proposed poverty action plan that includes a base income of $325 per person and the redistribution of wealth which she dubbed as "progressive policies" for the betterment of Kiwis.
Hoff-Nielsen said corporates and their profit margins were being satisfied rather than people's health by the introduction of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) into the environment.
There's no one person who has inspired her.
Go to the Northernadvocate.co.nz to see the video.
"Even though the situation might be heavy and tough to manage, I get into pretty booty discussions with people, but man they still inspire me to dig deep and look at where I really stand on that issue.
"Not just those who lift me up but also those who ground me that inspire me too," she said.
• Go to the Northernadvocate.co.nz to see the video.