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

 


Maori Party calls for action to protect long-finned eels

The Hon Dr Pita Sharples
Maori Party Co-Leader | MP for Tamaki Makaurau

17 April 2013

Maori Party calls for urgent action to protect long-finned eels

The long-finned eel is of huge significance to tangata whenua, especially inland tribes, and threats to its existence demand urgent attention, said Maori Party Co-leader Dr Pita Sharples.

“Our tipuna carefully protected and jealously guarded healthy populations of eels, because their mana depended on it,” said Dr Sharples. “Tuna have been a reliable source of food, and of tribal honour and pride that comes from offering visitors the finest of local delicacies. Any threat to the eels are a threat to the identity and mana of the iwi and hapu who have a responsibility to protect them,” he said.

“Today’s report from the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment says long-finned eels are becoming endangered, and there are some specific actions we can take to protect this iconic species.”

“A rāhui on commercial fishing is a top priority. This long-lived species breeds only once in its lifetime, so every remaining adult eel is vital to their long-term survival. It is outrageous that people are still catching them for profit.

“Long-finned eels also require clean water with reasonable flows. They have been seriously affected by water abstraction, sedimentation and pollution. The onus is on regional councils to set and enforce water flow regimes that maintain healthy habitats for eels.

“The recent drought has shown that a number of councils have over-allocated water for irrigation of farms and allowed major rivers to dry up completely. Pollution and sedimentation caused by excessive fertiliser or cattle entering waterways is another serious problem, one that is particularly related to intensive dairy farming. These are serious failures of the Resource Management Act, and councils have to step up to protect the public’s interests in the natural environment.”

“Barriers to eel migration require more work to resolve, but bypass streams and fish ladders can be built to allow the eels to complete their life cycle. Planning and budgeting needs to start immediately, while we still have some eels in our rivers.”

“Long-finned eels are key indicators of the health of our natural aquatic ecosystems. Eels have huge cultural significance to Maori, and their decline shows that the current resource management system is not protecting Maori interests properly. This is why tangata whenua demand a proper role as decision-makers in resource management, for the benefit of the eels, the wider environment, local communities, and future generations,” said Dr Sharples.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Teina Pora Wins Appeal: Gordon Campbell On The Privy Council Decision

The quashing of the convictions of Teina Pora for the rape and murder of Susan Burdett in 1992 has shone a spotlight once again on a major gap in the New Zealand justice system.

To all intents and purposes, access by New Zealanders to the Privy Council has now been closed. Yet the number of times in recent years when the Privy Council has quashed the findings of New Zealand courts has demonstrated that we are regularly
(a) jailing the wrong person or
(b) arriving at guilty verdicts on grounds sufficiently flawed as to raise serious doubts that a miscarriage of justice has occurred. More>>

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Urgent Bill Planned: MP Pay Rises To Match Public Service

Prime Minister John Key today announced an overhaul of the Remuneration Authority Act, tying MP salaries to those of the wider public sector, which will be passed under urgency. More>>

ALSO:

PM's Press Conference: MP Pay Rises, Solid Energy, Iraq

Prime Minister John Key answered questions in his Post-Cabinet press conference about the Iraq deployment, Solid Energy and National’s decision to overhaul the Remuneration Authority Act. More>>

ALSO:

Worksafe: MSD Charged Over Work And Income Ashburton Shooting

WorkSafe NZ has laid one charge against the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) in relation to the shooting at the MSD Ashburton office on 1 September 2014 in which two Work and Income staff were killed and another was injured. More>>

ALSO:

Iraq: Ex-Hostage Says Government Not Putting NZers, Iraqis First

Harmeet Singh Sooden is travelling to Iraq in the coming weeks to work with Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) on a short-term assignment. More>>

ALSO:

Joint Statement: Australia-New Zealand Leaders’ Meeting

Prime Minister Key warmly welcomed Prime Minister Abbott and Mrs Abbott to New Zealand. The visit has enabled wide-ranging and substantive discussion that has underlined the strength, value, diversity and warmth of our trans-Tasman relationship. More>>

ALSO:

Press Conference: Peters To Stand In Northland By-Election

New Zealand First Leader Winston Peters has announced his intention to stand in the Northland by-election, citing his own links to the electorate and ongoing neglect of the region by central government. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Wage Hike For MPs (and Paul Robeson)

Hard to tell what is more infuriating. Is it the 5.3% increase on the already bloated salaries of MPs, or their pantomime of outrage at being gifted with such a wonderful back-dated bonanza? More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news