Glyphosate spraying in Auckland upsets Councillor

Rodney ward representative Greg Sayers would like to restore funding for non-chemical weed control, and is unhappy about the amount of glyphosate that is being used around Auckland.

“There’s cities all across Europe that are banning it, or have banned it already. This is a chemical that, at the very least, serious questions have been asked about”, says Sayers.

Sayers says the views of Auckland’s councillors on glyphosate have not been tested as the words in the 10-year budget did not mention it.

Previous budgets have only talked about reducing costs and an increase in spraying, without any mention of chemicals. 

Auckland City and North Shore City were spray-free for 20 years before June.             

Some local boards have picked up the tab for mechanical weed control across parks and open spaces, including Great Barrier, Waiheke, Devonport-Takapuna and Kaipatiki. The Whau Local Board is funding mechanical edging in some parks.

In the road corridor, including berms and footpath edging, Auckland Transport continues the same methods it used under the legacy cities.

This varies across the city, from glyphosate and chemical spraying to plant-based herbicides, hot water, high-pressure steam and mechanical methods.

While Auckland Council is a heavy user of glyphosate, some parts of the city do not use the chemical. Biosafe was used in inner city suburbs while on the North Shore hot water is used.

Auckland Council’s head of operational maintenance and management said the council followed EPA guidelines.

Aucklanders can put their property on Auckland Transport’s no spray register if they agree to look after their own road frontage.