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Labour's Forest Policy Challenged

The West Coast lobby-group, Coast Action Network,(CAN) has made an official information request to the Government seeking clarification of its indigenous forest policy.

CAN spokesperson, Barry Nicolle said, " Labour's policy on indigenous forests says that it will establish a panel of experts to apply apropriate conservation criteria to all Crown-owned forestry land on the West Coast."

"Given that Labour has already stopped the beech scheme, we would like to know when the panel of experts was appointed, who was on it and what conclusions it reached. We would also like to know just what consultation took place with the people of the West Coast who are directly affected and what environmental impact studies or reports were completed before the policy was adopted," he said.

Mr Nicolle said that if we are going to play by the rules, then those rules most also apply to the Government.

"With the growing calls from forestry and environmental scientists throughout New Zealand for some accountability from Labour a call for a full public inquirey would not be unreasonable," Mr Nicolle said.

Labour's environment policy says it, "Strongly supports the Resource Management Act because it provides an integrated, participatory and transparent approach to planning for sustainable management." Labour stopped the RMA consent hearing by instructing Timberlands to withdraw.

West Coasters are starting to complain that Labour has already broken its word to New Zealanders and there doesn't appear to have been informed, focused and considered decisions-making. Labour's policies are now seen as unreasonable, perverse and irrational.

ends

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