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Mining Consent – Power – Ski Warning – Ritual Stabbing – Incense Carcinogenic

MINING CONSENT: Sandra Lee has defended herself over her decision to decline consent to GRD Macraes to mine on the West Coast, after the local council had already given a resource consent for the project. She was labelled gutless and stupid by West Coast Tasman Labour MP Damien O’Conner, causing a disturbance in the coalition. Mr O’Conner still maintains the decision was flawed. Prime Minister Helen Clark said Mr O’Conner was given a lot of leeway on West Coast issues.

POWER: The Natural Gas Corporation has announced a multi million dollar loss. The electricity industry is being blamed. NGC’s retail arm, On Energy, has sold all of its electricity customers. Big losses by power companies are tipped to push up electricity prices. Yesterday we conserved nearly eight percent power – not quite reaching the 10 percent target. Energy Minister Pete Hodgson says hydro lake levels have stabilised.

SKI WARNING: An extreme risk warning has come from police after skier David Harmer was killed by an avalanche outside the patrolled area of the Treble Cone Ski Field on the weekend.

RITUAL STABBING: A group representing most New Zealand Muslims has distanced itself from a ritual that put a man in hospital after he was stabbed in the abdomen. They say the body is sacred in Islam, and it should not be pierced. The wider Muslim community would like to see a tough line taken on groups that take part in the ritual. Police have not said if charges will be laid over the stabbing.

INCENSE CARCINOGENIC: New Scientist has reported that incense smoke is more carcinogenic than tobacco smoke.

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