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Alternative Hydro Options Ignored

Alternative Hydro Options Ignored

Wednesday 3 Dec 2003
Gerry Eckhoff
Press Releases -- Environment & Conservation

ACT New Zealand Rural Affairs Spokesman Gerry Eckhoff today expressed disbelief that the Ministry charged with overseeing the environment has not even considered the environmental impacts of alternatives to Project Aqua.

"Answers to my written Parliamentary Questions have revealed that the Environment Ministry has never once assessed alternative hydro developments to Project Aqua," Mr Eckhoff said.

"Apparently, the Ministry only prepares impact reports once a resource consent has been applied for.

"I would have thought that, for issues of national importance such as power generation, all the options would be assessed before the Ministry could approve any development of Project Aqua's magnitude.

"While there is no question that new capacity is vitally needed, the question of whether the Waitaki River provides the best hydro option will never be answered if no assessment is made of all other hydro options," Mr Eckhoff said.


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