Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Tongariro ruling reduces NZ to nutcase status

Tuesday, 8 June 2004

Tongariro ruling reduces New Zealand to nutcase status

United Future’s energy spokesperson Gordon Copeland believes the Environment Court’s decision to reduce the resource renewal for the Tongariro Hydro Scheme from 35 to just 10 years does further damage to New Zealand’s international reputation as an investment destination.

“Frankly we risk becoming a laughing stock if we continue down the road of political correctness over common sense.

“The Environment Court has ruled that the continued diversion of the headwaters of the Whanganui, Whangaehu, and Moawhango Rivers on the North Island Central Plateau is “sacrilege”, a “denigration of Maori values and beliefs”, and “hurtful of Maori self-esteem”.

“Let’s for once get real. If asked, I am sure the overwhelming majority of NZ Maori, like the rest of us, don’t want to risk going without electricity in their homes and businesses.

“Yet that is exactly what the Environment Court decision is now risking. It is unacceptable for any unelected group – no matter how well intentioned – to place New Zealand’s electricity supply in jeopardy. The decision borders on the surreal.

“Does anyone really think that the self esteem of Maori families in the Whanganui River basin is dependant upon having some additional water flowing down to the Whanganui River and into the ocean?

“The Whanganui River is hardly devoid of water and continues to flood on a semi-regular basis. We are off into some mystical journey into the metaphysical when things reach this juncture and I am not convinced that the majority of Maori are interested in going down that pathway.

“I receive emails from Maori saying that their major concerns are everyday issues like good health, quality education, family breakdown and drugs.

“What does the reduction of water flows in the Whanganui River do to assist in these areas? Absolutely nothing!”

Mr Copeland said “We are in the midst of an electricity crisis. We already have enormous problems in terms of uncertainty and delays caused by the RMA process for both electricity generation and transmission.

“The government has foolishly placed the entire conservation estate – about one third of New Zealand’s land area – out of bounds for new hydro schemes and we have the uncertainty of their intention in relation to carbon charges arising from the Kyoto Protocol. We have just seen the plug pulled on Project Aqua because, at the end of the day, it all proved too difficult.

“The Environment Court’s decision is the final straw. The business risks now associated with investing in electricity generation – risk created through our own legislation – is such that severe electricity shortages now seem almost inevitable.

“The resultant damage to our standard of living doesn’t bear thinking about, said Mr Copeland.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Supreme Court: Worksafe Decision On Whittall Pike River Prosecution Unlawful

The question in issue on the appeal was whether WorkSafe New Zealand acted to give effect to an unlawful agreement of this nature when it offered no evidence on charges against Peter William Whittall for breaches of the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992...

The Supreme Court... has found that the decision to offer no evidence was made under an unlawful agreement to stifle prosecution. It has granted a declaration to that effect. More>>

 

Cullen To Chair: Tax Working Group Terms Of Reference Announced

Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Revenue Minister Stuart Nash today announced the Terms of Reference for the Tax Working Group and that the Group will be chaired by Sir Michael Cullen. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The New Pike River Agency (And The Air Strike Wing)

Much of the sympathy the public still feels for the families of the Pike River miners has been sustained by the sense that the previous government – let alone the mining company and the processes of receivership and litigation – has never dealt honestly, or fairly, with them. More>>

ALSO:

Not Going Swimmingly: Contractor Cut, New Dates For Christchurch Sports Centre

“As an incoming Minister, I have been conducting a thorough review of progress on the Anchor projects and to learn of a $75 million budget blowout on this project was very disappointing..." More>>

ALSO:

Tertiary: Allowances, Loan Living Costs To Get Boost

“From 1 January, student allowance base rates and the maximum amount students can borrow for living costs will rise by a net $50 a week,” says Education Minister Chris Hipkins... further adjusted from 1 April 2018 in line with any increase in the CPI. More>>

ALSO:

Foreign Affairs: Patrick Gower Interviews Jacinda Ardern

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says discussions have already begun on how to bring climate change refugees into New Zealand under a Pacific seasonal employment plan... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Centre Right’s Love Of ‘Nanny State’

You’d almost think it was 2005 again. That was a time when the rugged individualists of the centre-right were being beset by government regulations on the nature of light-bulbs, the size of shower heads, the junk food available at school tuck shops and other such essentials... More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election