News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search


Forest Protection Funds Gutted for Stewart Island

29 October, 1999


Forest Protection Funds Gutted for Stewart Island Deal

Contact: Kevin Smith (04) 385-7374 work or (04) 934-2473 home _______________________________________________________________________

Critical opportunities for nature protection on private land could be lost over the next three years because of the Government's recent expensive forest protection deal for Stewart Island Maori land, according to conservationists.

The Forest and Bird Protection Society's Conservation Director, Kevin Smith, said that the protection of the 3,300 hectare Lords River block on Stewart Island had been funded, in large part, by the Minister of Conservation reducing funding for the Nature Heritage Fund and the Nga Whenua Rahui Fund over the next three years.

"My understanding is that both these funds have been slashed by about 50%. The $10.9 million Stewart Island deal has been bankrolled mainly by the Minister of Conservation taking $6.8 million from the two funds' next three years' allocation.

"Both the Nature Heritage Fund and Nga Whenua Rahui were already heavily over-subscribed. This funding cut has gutted them, meaning that many important protection opportunities for rare habitats and threatened species on private land will now fall by the wayside. Many private landowners will be disappointed. Tensions over Resource Management Act restrictions on natural areas will increase now that funding for voluntary conservation initiatives has been slashed."

Forest and Bird welcomed the protection of the Stewart Island Maori land but believed it should not be at the expense of higher nature conservation priorities elsewhere around the country.

Mr Smith said he was disappointed that the Minister of Conservation had used the protection funds without seeking the agreement of the funds' two advisory boards.

"These boards have performed an outstanding service to conservation over the last ten years by ensuring the funds are wisely spent to achieve the greatest conservation benefit. The Minister should be seeking their advice on conservation priorities and acting on it, rather than ignoring them as he has done here."

Forest and Bird is calling on all political parties to restore and increase funding for the Nature Heritage Fund and Nga Whenua Rahui.

"Critically depleted habitats such as coastal dunes, wetlands, natural grasslands and lowland forests containing threatened species are at great risk. Unless landowners can receive assistance in the protection of the most valuable areas, many will be lost. This is a pity and a sad outcome of the otherwise laudable protection of the Stewart Island forests," said Mr Smith.

....... ends

© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Howard Davis Review: From Free Press to Fancy Dress - Spielberg's The Post

Stephen Spielberg's The Post is an opportune newsroom drama in which a corrupt Republican president wages war against the "liberal media," as its plucky proprietor risks economic and legal ruin to bring the Pentagon Papers to public light. Its true protagonist is publisher Katharine Graham, a stringently diplomatic businesswoman, reluctantly compelled to take an overtly political stance in the interests of democracy and freedom of the press. More>>

Howard Davis Review: The Black Dog of Empire - Joe Wright's Darkest Hour'

On the eve of England's contorted efforts to negotiate its ignominious retreat from Europe and the chaotic spectacle of the Tory party ratifying its undignified departure from a union originally designed to prevent another World War, there has been a renewed appetite for movies about 1940. More>>

Howard Davis Review: Anger Begets Anger - Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

For fans of what Ricky Gervais termed "number movies" (Seven Samurai, The Magnificent Seven, Ocean's 11, Se7en), Martin McDonagh's latest offering will be a welcome addition to the roster. The Irish playwright turned screenwriter and director has produced another quirky and darkly comic tragedy that evolves around the futility of anger and grief, retribution and revenge. More>>

Howard Davis: Sexting in George Dawe's Genevieve - Part I

Te Papa's permanent collection includes an enormous oil painting by the English artist George Dawe called Genevieve (from by a poem by S.T. Coleridge entitled 'Love') that was prominently featured in the 2013 exhibition Angels & Aristocrats. Compare the massive immensity of the bard's gorgeously gilded harp with the stubby metallic handle of the Dark Knight's falchion, both suggestively positioned at crotch-level. Dawe's enormous canvas invokes a whole history of blushing that pivots around a direct connection to sexual arousal. More>>


Ethnomusicology: Malian ‘Desert Blues’ Revolutionaries To Storm WOMAD

Malian band Tinariwen (playing WOMAD NZ in March 2018) are a true musical revolutionaries in every sense. Active since 1982, these nomadic Tuareg or ‘Kel Tamashek’ (speakers of Tamashek) electric guitar legends revolutionised a traditional style to give birth to a new genre often called ‘desert blues’. They also have a history rooted deeply in revolution and fighting for the rights of their nomadic Tamashek speaking culture and people. More>>

Gordon Campbell: Best New Music Of 2017

Any ‘best of list’ has to be an exercise in wishful thinking, given the splintering of everyone’s listening habits... But maybe… it could be time for the re-discovery of the lost art of listening to an entire album, all the way through. Just putting that idea out there. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland