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DOC Funds For "Feel Good" Projects

Media Release
2 December 2003

DOC Funds For "Feel Good" Projects

The Department of Conservation appears to have plenty of money available for “feel good” projects and not enough to protect our rare natural treasures, said New Zealand First conservation spokesperson, Edwin Perry MP.

“The Conservation Minister last week opened a $200,000 walkway in Milford Sound. The department contributed $73,000 towards the total cost.

“On Friday complimentary copies of an expensive glossy publication celebrating 100 years of scenery preservation in New Zealand were distributed to all MPs and probably dozens of other interested parties.

“There’s not much point congratulating ourselves on preserving the scenery if we have no wildlife except imported predators and the occasional holidaying hobbit with attendant film crew,” said Mr Perry.

“Each year DoC provides funds for roads (including private roads), huts, tracks, campsites, historic sites, information centres and of course publications to tell us about all of these.

“Contrast that with the miserly $3 million spent on kiwi recovery and it becomes evident that priorities here are somewhat skewed. Preservation of our native species deserves a bigger slice of the department’s funding – not the leftovers from the warm fuzzy projects,” said Mr Perry.

ENDS

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