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Happy Valley protesters to be applauded

27 January 2006

Happy Valley protesters to be applauded - Greens

Protestors who plan to indefinitely occupy a precious natural South Island valley in a bid to stop it being turned into an open cast coal mine have the full support of the Green Party.

Conservation Spokesperson Metiria Turei says the Party hopes that lots of people will get behind the Save Happy Valley Coalition when they move onto the site tomorrow.

"It is scandalous that in this day and age we are still allowing companies to proceed with environmentally devastating open cast mining - especially when the company, Solid Energy, is a State Owned Enterprise.

"The Government should be doing everything in its power to protect our fragile environment. It should certainly not allow one of its own businesses to be one of the biggest ecological destroyers.

"In this case the open cast mine will destroy the habitat of a number of threatened native species, including the great spotted kiwi and the Powelliphanta "patrickensis" snail.

"It will also do irreversible damage to a pristine ecosystem and pollute waterways with acid mine drainage.

"We applaud the Coalition for their courage to take this action and wish them all the best in their endeavours," Mrs Turei says.


ENDS

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