Retrolens historic images

This may be of interest to some people – a library of historic aerial photographs, currently for the Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Hawkes Bay, Nelson, Malborough, Canterbury and Southland.

Retrolens Historic Images – Map

Also on aerial images, I see that Google Maps have updated images, at least of my area. It’s interesting to see new plantings and growings and cuttings and landscaping.

From Retrolens About:


Retrolens is made up of a treasure trove of aerial photographs that have been taken since the 1936 through to 2005. It is a Crown archive and contains 500,000 images.

This Historic Image Resource came about as the result of a scanning project that was started in 2015 by partnerships between the Local Government Geospatial Alliance (LGGA) and Land Information New Zealand (LINZ). The two organisations were concerned that the treasure was deteriorating and with fewer and fewer scanners worldwide able to read the images, something had to be done quickly before this significant slice of our cultural and geospatial history was lost forever. An initial pilot was undertaken to test out the viability of a full scanning project for the whole archive, then the project itself, led by LINZ began.

The project began with three partner regions (Canterbury, Waikato and Bay of Plenty). Council partners continue to join the project progressively from across NZ as different areas became aware of the project and have funding to be able to join the initiative. It is estimated that the scanning of the Crown archive will be completed by 2021.

The photos were taken for a range of reasons such as land management and mapping. The value of these images is in showing change across New Zealand. Key drivers for having the images scanned broadly speaking are better decision making, complying with regulatory requirements and cultural heritage with specifics including using the images to support potential identification of “HAIL” contaminated land sites, accretion and recession of coastlines, changes in areas of significant vegetation and changes in river pathways.

 

Tough outlook for earthquaked towns

The towns worst affected by this week’s earthquakes are having to deal with massive problems with damaged houses and wrecked infrastructure.

One of the biggest problems facing their recovery will be business, and that is affected substantially by inaccessibility due to wrecked roads, especially in Kaikoura.

Getting good access from the south will be difficult enough (a rough inland road for emergency access only has been opened) but getting a through road will be a major challenge.

kaikouraroadslip

One of a number of landslides blocking the Kaikoura coast road.

RNZ: Kaikoura fears becoming a ghost town if State Highway 1 ‘lifeline’ stays closed

Kaikoura business owners say the town could die once the relief runs out, and only reopening State Highway One will save it.

SH1, the main route to Kaikoura from the north and south, is closed. It sustained significant damage, with cracks, fissures and landslides. The New Zealand Transport Agency said restoring full access would take several months.

Damage to sea life, the fisheries industry and wildlife will affect the town’s biggest tourists attractions, such as whale watching, dolphin encounters and the seal colony.

Kaikoura will be badly affected without tourism. They are certain to lose this summer’s trade.

Dwayne Fussell owns Coastal Sports. He has lived in the town for 15 years and is raising a family.

The town’s businesses were seasonal. They made money over summer and struggled through winter, he said.

“If you don’t make that [money] through the December, January months, you’re not here the following summer.

Only reopening SH1 would bring the visitors back, he said. If the tourists stayed away, the businesses would disappear.

“SH1 is our lifeline. We need it,” he said.

Unless the main highway is reopened right up the coast to allow through traffic – and months to repair it looks very optimistic – then Kaikoura is in trouble.

Even when the highway is reinstated they will require costly repairs and re-establishment of facilities. Some of the coastal fisheries and wildlife will have been badly affected by the earthquake, but it is unknown at this stage how the big draw cards, the dolphins and especially the whales will have been affected.

And even with facilities and roads restored they will have to overcome fears and a reluctance of tourists to venture down a very risky looking coastline.

Hamner Springs is another town reliant on tourism. Even though they weren’t far from the first earthquake epicentre the town was remarkably unscathed and has reopened for business, but through a combination of fear of more earthquakes and a lack of coastal through traffic they are suffering.

Newshub: Hanmer Springs a ‘ghost town’ – business owners

Hanmer Springs businesses are desperate for tourists to visit after a large drop in numbers following Monday’s 7.8 magnitude quake.

The quake was centred about 25km southeast of Hanmer Springs, but despite its proximity, the village suffered very little damage.

Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools and Spa general manager Graeme Abbott says there’s been a noticeable drop in visitors.

On a “normal day”, he would expect between 500-600 visitors, but on Tuesday he only had around 150.

“It’s gradually climbing up but still nowhere near what we would usually expect,” Mr Abbott says.

“The reality is we had a major earthquake here and power outages and road closures so people couldn’t get here, but that’s all cleared up now.”

Mr Abbott says there is no need for people to stay away from Hanmer Springs.

“The village is undamaged. All the businesses are open.”

In time it mightn’t be so bad for Hamner as the detour south runs near them – in fact it might improve things for them as tourism flows pick up.

But Kaikoura especially, and other towns and regions on the coastal route like Cheviot and the Waipara wine region to the south will find business tough for a year or two at least.

To the north some Marlborough vineyards and wineries were damaged by the earthquakes, and the Picton to Christchurch detour route that goes nearly to the West Coast and back across Lewis Pass, bypasses Blenheim so they are also likely to be affected there.

It’s interesting to see Google Maps and the AA Route Finder showing the detour rather than the munted coast road already. The detour extends the normal 350 kilometre trip to 480 km, and obviously misses all the coastal scenery.

Other regions will probably benefit, but the affected towns and area will struggle to survive as they were.

Alternate route to Kaikoura coast?

Andrew Little has asked whether an alternate route should be considered after the Kaikoura cost road has been extensively damaged by landslides and slips after Monday’s earthquake.

1 News: ‘We need to think of an alternative route’ – Andrew Little questions whether repairing damaged road is worth it

Roading and rail along the coast is certainly a huge challenge, but I don’t know how much Little has thought about alternate routes.

That corner of the South Island is a mangled mess of mountains riddle with earthquake fault lines.

marlboroughmountains

Mangled mess of mountains

That whole area has an estimated 80,000-100,000 landslips, and inland is more mountainous, especially north of Kaikoura.

Which of these fault lines would an alternative route be better? All valleys follow fault lines.

marlboroughfaultlines

That is before this week’s earthquakes which are scattered across the region.

Non partisan survey of earthquake areas

It was good to see Andrew Little accompanying John Key and Gerry Brownlee via air force helicopter to survey the earthquake damage in Marlborough and Kaikoura.

The repair work of infrastructure and especially roads and rail lines is going to be an expensive and long term project. Understanding the scale and cost of the problems by both major parties is important, and cooperation in planning the repairs, is going to be important.

Either Key or Little could be leading the Government this time next year and there will be a lot to do still then,

The cost of repairs, roughly estimated at several billion dollars, will impact on the New Zealand economy and Government budgets, and party policies heading into next year’s election will have to take in account the impact of earthquake repair costs.

From Stuff: Kaikoura earthquake: PM surveys the ‘devastation’ from the air

The Prime Minister says the damage to the Kaikoura region is worse than he thought.

Massive slips could be seen as he flew over in a Defence Force NH90.

“It’s just utter devastation, I just don’t know … that’s months of work,” John Key told Gerry Brownlee and pilots.

Dust billowed down the hillside as the chopper circulated. The pilot said he’d never been airborne when a quake had hit before.

Key asked how big the quake was but the pilot didn’t know.

As they flew over Key and Brownlee commented on the damage to rail lines and roads.

The doors were opened and the helicopter flew low as Key, Brownlee and Andrew Little surveyed the area.

As he viewed the damage, Little said the mudslides and rockfall were “stunning”.

“I can’t imagine what it will be like to clear it,” he said.

“Look at that road down there, it’s been hammered,” Key said.

A slumped hill could be seen and Brownlee commented “oh hell that’s amazing”.

A non-partisan appreciation of the scale of the problems is important, as will be the plans to fix the damage.

Just one of a number of major slips (there have been estimates of up to 100,000 slips throughout the area):

1479094090423

Marlborough Civil Defence

Massive problems – and both National and Labour along with the other parties in Parliament will need to work constructively together on funding and planning solutions.

Earthquake – update information

Key facts from RNZ:

  • A 7.5 magnitude earthquake struck near Hanmer Springs at 12.02am on Monday.
  • There have been two confirmed deaths. One person died in a house that collapsed in Kaikoura, and a second person died at a house in Mt Lyford, inland from Kaikoura.
  • Scores of severe aftershocks have hit.
  • Kaikoura is still cut off from the rest of the country, with major landslides blocking the roads in and out.
  • Six people suffered moderate to serious injuries in Kaikoura and were airlifted to hospital; another 18 were treated for minor injuries.
  • Most of Wellington’s CBD will open as normal on Tuesday morning, with parts of Featherston St cordoned off.
  • People living near the Clarence River were told to evacuate after a dam breach. A group of kayakers, and another group of 16 rafters, have been found safe.
  • Tsunami warnings have been cancelled, but people are advised to stay vigilant near coastal waters.

Morning update (Tuesday 15 November).:

  • Mass evacuations are due to begin this morning from quake-hit Kaikoura, on the South Island’s east coast.
  • The town is cut off by road and rail, and the navy ship HMNZS Canterbury has been sent to help bring supplies and get people out.
  • 1200 tourists are believed to be stranded in Kaikoura, and RNZ News has been told as many as 50 helicopters will also help evacuate them.
  • Large aftershocks have continued to rattle buildings and nerves overnight in the town of about two-thousand people.
  • Civil Defence says only three days’ supply of fresh water remain.
  • The Takahanga Marae deputy chairperson, Major Timms, says the town’s concrete water tank has split in two. The marae yesterday fed about 700 people in the aftermath of the quake and is expecting large numbers again today.
  • A team of specialist engineers will begin inspecting earthquake-damaged buildings this morning.
  • The Civil Defence national controller David Coetzee (could-seer) says about 50 buildings in Wellington need further assessment. And the engineers will also carry out assessments of several buildings in Kaikoura. Mr Coetzee expects it will take a couple of days to get a complete picture of the extent of the damage.

Wellington:

  • You may be able to head back to work today, but you should check with your boss to make sure you can go back to your building – and use your commonsense.
  • Commuter rail services in Wellington are expected to return to normal schedules today after yesterday’s quake related suspensions operator Metlink says.
  • The capital’s bus services are running but are diversions are in place in the central business district  to allow inspection of buildings for quake and wind damage.
  • The Fire Service says there were no major callouts in the capital overnight although Civil Defence said there were some instances of broken glass being dislodged by last night’s winds.
  • Some areas of the CBD remain cordoned off due to the risk of further glass and debris being dislodged by strong wind.
  • Civil Defence says Central Wellington will be open for business today  but people will need to use their commonsense and check with their employers whether their building has been inspected and deemed safe to enter.
  • A KiwiRail spokeswoman said two freight only Interislander ferry crossings of Cook Strait were made last night but passenger services were yet to resume.

http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/318002/live-new-zealand’s-7-point-5-quake

Earthquakes continued…

Quakes have continued to rumble through the night in the north east of the South Island, with 28 recorded at Geonet in the last hour (4:20 to 5:20 am). There have been about 800 aftershocks altogether.

There are reports that there could be up to 100,000 landslides/slips.

Geonet says that multiple faults have ruptured:

Rapid field reconnaissance indicates that multiple faults have ruptured:

  • Kekerengu Fault at the coast – appears to have had up to 10m of slip
  • Newly identified fault at Waipapa Bay
  • Hope Fault – seaward segment – minor movement
  • Hundalee Fault 

What we are finding in New Zealand is that quite a few of our larger earthquakes involve jumping from rupture on one plane to another in a complex sequence.

‘Strong’ or ‘severe’ quakes overnight (these seem to have slowed down):

  • 5.0 (severe) 10:49:56 pm 10 km east of Kaikoura
  • 5.1 (strong) 12:16:42 am 15 km east of Seddon
  • 4.8 (strong) 1:03:00 am 5 km west of Kaikoura
  • 4.6 (strong) 4:22:19 am 10 km east of Seddon

So both Kaikoura and Seddon continuing to bear the brunt of this. Those are moderate sized quakes on the scale but they are shallow (8-25 km) so more energy gets to the surface than deeper quakes.

This map shows the pattern of quakes since midnight yesterday. Most of them are shallow.

earthquakes2016novdepthmap

Earthquakes midnight 14 Nov – 5:30 am 15 Nov (Geonet)

And this shows their strengths better:

earthquakes2016novstrength

Last 500 earthquakes light to severe as at 6:oo am 15 November 2016 (Geonet)

That shows the clustering in North Canterbury-Marlborough with a couple in Wellington but they feel the bigger Seddon quakes in Wellington too.

Updates from Geonet:

M7.5 Kaikoura Quake: What we know so far

Updated at 23.52, 14/11/2016 This earthquake was the largest recorded in New Zealand since the M7.8 Dusky Sound earthquake in 2009. But, given its location, it was more widely felt and more damaging. This earthquake unsettled many people and that is perfectly normal; earthquakes can be upsetting events. The best advice we have is to be prepared for earthquakes.  We can say one thing with certainty: there will be more earthquakes to come in this area.…

M7.5 Kaikoura Earthquake: Latest updates

Multiple ruptures

Rapid field reconnaissance indicates that multiple faults have ruptured:

  • Kekerengu Fault at the coast – appears to have had up to 10m of slip
  • Newly identified fault at Waipapa Bay
  • Hope Fault – seaward segment – minor movement
  • Hundalee Fault 

In the simplest case an earthquake is a rupture on a single fault plane.

What we are finding in New Zealand is that quite a few of our larger earthquakes involve jumping from rupture on one plane to another in a complex sequence. We first saw that with the Darfield Sept 2010 EQ where multiple segments ruptured together as a single earthquake. We appear to have seen this again overnight.

In terms of what might happen next: The scenarios provide an overview of how we see this earthquake sequence evolving over the next few days to one month. What is on the web page is our best information that we have to hand at the moment.

We’ve developed three scenarios based on what we know so far but be aware that our understanding is evolving as we do more analysis and receive more data. 

Scenario One: Very likely (80% and greater)
A normal aftershock sequence that is spread over the next few months to years. Felt aftershocks (e.g. M>5) would occur from the M7.5 epicentre near Culverden, right up along the Kaikoura coastline to Cape Campbell over the next few months to years. This is the most likely scenario.

Scenario Two: Likely (60% and greater)
In the next month, it would be likely that rupture of earthquakes of about an M6 in the North Canterbury and Marlborough regions will occur, as well as potentially offshore in Southern Cook Strait and offshore Kaikoura.

Scenario Three: Unlikely (less than 40%)
The least likely scenario is that in the next month, (it is unlikely but still possible) there would be rupture of longer known faults (with earthquakes of about M7), in the Marlborough and Cook Strait regions.

So there is at least likely to be a continuation of the many aftershocks, with the lower possibility of some quite large ones still to come.

Ex MP fails in Marlborough

Ex National MP Colin King missed the mark by a long way in the Marlborough mayoralty, with John Leggett getting nearly twice as many votes as King.

RNZ:

John Leggett is the new mayor in Marlborough, replacing Alistair Sowman, who is stepping down after 12 years in office. He won 8992 votes, with his nearest rival Colin King  4741 votes.

Leggett was secretly recorded voicing concern about council spending on the cash-strapped ASB Theatre, a project he has always publicly supported.

The recording was released to Cameron Slater’s Whale Oil blog leading to allegations a rival mayoral candidate had hired Mr Slater to reveal dirt on Mr Leggett.

The tactic failed spectacularly however with Mr Leggett gaining almost twice as many votes as his nearest rival.

Provincial politics is a lot different to big city party politics. Word can get around quite effectively, and relatively few there will read blogs or take them, seriously.

That could be an embarrassing defeat for King, an ex Member of Parliament, despite using Simon Lusk who has an association with Whale Oil.

 

 

Dirty local body politics?

A story of ‘political skulduggery’ in Marlborough from Stuff: Marlborough councillors brand Whale Oil leak ‘despicable’

Political skulduggery has again rocked the council chamber in Marlborough as lawyers are called in to investigate a secret recording of a committee meeting leaked to a right-wing blog. 

The leak to Whale Oil could see heads roll at the council, as councillors who attended the meeting are made to front up on Monday.

A recording of a tense behind closed doors discussion about the cash-strapped ASB Theatre was published on the blog site on Friday.

Council chief executive Mark Wheeler said if a councillor had leaked the public-excluded discussion he or she could be asked to resign. 

The committee meeting took place in April. 

Councillor Peter Jerram said the leak was “absolutely orchestrated” and smacked of “dirty politics” emerging in Marlborough. 

“Party politics are definitely involved. But worse than that, it’s gutter politics.” 

Marlborough Mayor Alistair Sowman said the post was a clear attack on mayoral frontrunner Leggett, after a “very successful” attack on Sowman himself. 

Whale Oil involved in local body politics in Marlborough might seem a bit odd, they don’t usually do much about the provinces and most will have no idea who the current mayor of Marlborough is and who the candidates are.

But Whale Oil has had a number of posts on Marlborough local body politics over the last few months. Why? The Stuff article has a hint.

Political strategist Simon Lusk, who has links to Whale Oil, spoke at a local government seminar in Marlborough earlier this year attended by several council candidates. 

Lusk said at the time fighting for transparency was meaningless unless candidates opposed bad news being hidden in publicly excluded council meetings.

Lusk did not confirm or deny whether he was involved when contacted on Saturday. 

He was told information had come through on the blog’s tip line, he said. 

Why Lusk or Whale Oil might have such an interest in Marlborough local body politics is anyone’s guess.

There’s an unusual number of posts on Marlborough issues at Whale Oil going back to about June. No other regions have had this much attention so they stood out.

I never took much notice of the Marlborough posts apart from noticing they were there, they seemed local and not very interesting.

But what we have now is a story of wider interest:

  • a secret recording of a closed Marlborough District Council meeting in April
  • details of the recording published on Whale Oil in September, on the day that local body election voting papers are sent out
  • council chief executive Mark Wheeler said if a councillor had leaked the public-excluded discussion he or she could be asked to resign

Being asked to resign three weeks before the election closes might be horse bolted timing.

What if the leaker is a candidate for the election? Their name is already printed on the ballot and posted to voters, but it could affect votes.

The Marlborough Express (Stuff) has followed up with Marlborough council announces investigation into Whale Oil leak ahead of final meeting

A secret recording of a private council meeting has triggered an investigation into all councillors and staff who were at the meeting. 

The investigation will require everyone at the behind closed doors discussion in Marlborough to sign a statutory declaration saying they were not behind the recording or it being leaked to a right-wing blog. 

It is a criminal offence to knowingly make a false declaration.

They are taking it very seriously.

Meanwhile Whale Oil had a string of posts on it yesterday too.

As predicted yesterday the Marlborough Express has written an attack piece on me. They didn’t even call for comment.

After we busted John Leggett and the Marlborough Express tried to ignore the story there still remain a number of unanswered questions that I am sure the ratepayers of Marlborough wants answers to.

The Marlbourgh Express doesn’t seem to know the first rule of politics. Explaining is losing.

That’s funny considering the number of posts explaining everything.

Locals don’t dare speak out because their lives will be made hell.  Local news doesn’t dare speak up because their commercial viability is under threat if they speak up against their biggest advertisers.

More explaining. They could be important issues for people in Marlborough, but that’s local stuff that most people are unlikely to be interested in.

So they act like they are violated, scream “Whaleoil” and hope that voters will forget what it is really all about.

What an utter waste of rate payers’ money to try and figure out who helped the truth get to the public.

Stop screaming my name, and start taking responsibility for your own words and actions.

That’s more interesting, to me anyway.

A secret recording was taken of a closed door council meeting and supplied to a media outlet and published during an election campaign.

The recording is a serious matter. If it was a councillor they could be asked to resign. If it was a staff member  I expect it would potentially be a sackable offence.

But Cameron Slater and Whale Oil don’t think that how the information was obtained matters, or is excusable as the story they want to tell is what is important.

Nicky Hager thought something similar when he published Dirty Politics.

Another thing that puzzles me about this – how much influence would Whale Oil have on the Marlborough election?

Most people are barely or not interested in local body elections. Most Marlborough voters are unlikely to read Whale Oil.

I’m baffled as to why Whale Oil is giving so much coverage over several months for a relatively low interest issue that can hardly be attracting many clicks or much advertising to the blog.

It will be interesting to see whether Whale Oil sees their whistle blowing coverage of sufficient importance and interest to continue their coverage after the election.

Private-Public MRI scanner partnership

An example of a private-public partnership in Marlborough in the shared use of an MRI scanner that otherwise would be difficult to financially justify for either private or public use. Radio NZ reports:

New scanner to increase MRI capacity

The Nelson Marlborough District Health Board has reached an agreement with Pacific Radiology Group to install a new magnetic resonance imaging machine at Wairau Hospital in Blenheim.

The agreement calls for a portable building to be attached to the hospital’s radiology department, meaning both private and public patients will have access.

The scanner will be available to the district health board for four half-day sessions a week out of 10 sessions, increasing the district’s MRI capacity by 80 percent.

Pacific Radiology chief executive Dr Lance Lawler said it was a good example of how balanced public private partnerships can solve the problems of access to high tech care in provincial areas.

Yes, this looks like a sensible example of shared private-public use to justify the cost and p;rovide better health care in Marlborough.