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Assurance Sought On Waitaki Bill

Media Release
18 May 2004

Assurance Sought On Waitaki Bill

New Zealand First wants an assurance from the Environment Minister that the Waitaki River Bill will go ahead.

“Despite the withdrawal of Meridian Energy from Project Aqua, there is still an opportunity here for the development of a best practice model for water management and allocation,” said environment spokesperson Jim Peters.

“In its revised form, the Resource Management (Waitaki Catchment) Amendment Bill would enable protection of the river as well as providing for recreational users.

“The control of sustainable river flows for irrigation would provide a further boost for farmers in the area.

“New Zealand First, along with local councils, urges the Government to work with Environment Canterbury to proceed with the bill and provide a total catchment approach to the management of this precious resource.

“The valuable research and engineering work done by Meridian Energy with regard to the application has left in the public domain a major body of information that would cost millions to replicate.

“It would be extremely disappointing to see that work gathering dust when it could be used to ensure the sustainability of the river for present and future generations,” said Mr Peters.


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