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EDS secures victory for New Zealand’s outstanding coasts

Media Release: EDS secures victory for New Zealand’s outstanding coasts

The Environmental Defence Society has welcomed the Supreme Court judgment on the King Salmon case as “an important victory for New Zealand’s outstanding coasts.”

“King Salmon applied for plan changes and resource consents for salmon farms at nine sites in the Marlborough Sounds. The Board of Inquiry found that the Port Gore site was an outstanding natural landscape, but it went ahead and approved an industrial-scale salmon farm anyway,” said EDS Policy Director Raewyn Peart.

“EDS argued that the Board of Inquiry was wrong to allow a salmon farm in an outstanding natural landscape because the New Zealand Coastal Policy Statement 2010 requires adverse effects on outstanding natural landscapes to be avoided.
“EDS is delighted that the Supreme Court has upheld the plain meaning of the New Zealand Coastal Policy Statement. It is now clear that national policies may put in place environmental bottom lines and decision makers must comply with those directions.

“Outstanding landscapes are some of the most highly valued parts of our coastline and critical to our tourism sector. This decision means that these areas will be better protected. This is a fantastic outcome for New Zealanders.

“This is arguably the most important decision on the Resource Management Act (RMA) that has been given by our courts to date and it establishes new jurisprudence in this area. EDS has always believed that the overall broad judgement approach was wrong and that the RMA contains environmental bottom lines. We will be carefully analysing the implications of the judgment over the next few weeks.

“EDS would like to thank David Kirkpatrick (now an Environment Court judge) and Robert Enright (DLA Phillips Fox) who represented EDS in the Supreme Court,” Ms Peart concluded.

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