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RMA Puts Price Tag on Traditional Values

RMA Puts Price Tag on Traditional Values

Contact Energy's payment of $1.52 million to Ngai Tahu for the iwi to support power generation development on the Clutha River is a classic example of the Resource Management Act being used to exchange money for spiritual values, ACT Rural Affairs Spokesman Gerry Eckhoff said today.

"Contact Energy is paying $1.52 million for Ngai Tahu's loss of `traditional values' on the Clutha River for the next 35 years.

"It seems remarkably sad to me that Ngai Tahu believe their traditional values can be quantified in monetary terms.

"What this money is spent on is irrelevant. The Resource Management Act objection process has paved the way for this transaction to take place.

"I have been rounded upon by some interest groups for pointing out that the Resource Management Act encourages practices like this. Sadly, this case proves the point: the Resource Management Act is poor legislation, and encourages values and principles to be bought and sold," Mr Eckhoff said.

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