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


Timberlands exposes Government's hypocrisy

8 August 1999

Timberlands' new logging exposes Government's '100% pure' hypocrisy

The National Government has put its mark on Conservation Week this year by commencing unsustainable logging of a pristine, old-growth native forest, home to eight threatened wildlife species.

Green Party Co-Leader Rod Donald said today that state owned enterprise Timberlands started logging the Orikaka forest north of the West Coast's Buller River about two weeks ago.

"Timberlands has started ripping the guts out of one of the country's most significant lowland forests at the same time that the Tourism Board has released its '100 Percent Pure New Zealand' campaign and when Conservation Minister Nick Smith is telling New Zealanders they should be looking after our unique bio-diversity," Mr Donald said.

"There's absolutely no reason to log that forest. No-one will die if the trees are left standing, but at least eight native wildlife species are threatened with extinction if they are logged."

Over 80 percent of the Orikaka forest is untouched, virgin bush. It is home to 26 native bird species, six of which, including the great spotted kiwi and kaka, are threatened. Two native fish species found there are also threatened. The Conservation Department rates the 6,450 hectare forest as having high conservation values and high density populations of the great spotted kiwi and kaka.

Mr Donald called on the Government to demand an end to the logging.

"If National is serious about bio-diversity and projecting New Zealand to international tourists as '100% pure' it must stop the destruction at Orikaka."

Mr Donald said the West Coast was fast becoming like a Hollywood set - there is a natural bush façade near the tourist routes and roads but the forests behind it are being destroyed.

He said the Buller logging would become an international embarrassment for the country and would severely undermine the new '100% pure' campaign.

"We intend to tell Green Parties throughout Europe, the United States and around the world of the Government's actions and the truth behind the Government's hypocritical tourism marketing."

Environmental lobby group Forest and Bird challenged the Orikaka logging in the Environment Court on July 27. A ruling has yet to be released.

Last week, more than 50 Green Party members and four candidates took direct action against Timberlands by digging up one of its West Coast forestry roads and planting it in beech trees.

"Timberlands must be stopped," said Mr Donald. "They are logging Orikaka for profits to support a glitzy public relations campaign and business junkets which are used to justify the destruction of New Zealand's lowland forests.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Zimbabwe: New Democracy, Or A False Dawn?

Gordon Campbell: Robert Mugabe = Hosni Mubarak. The current jubilation on the streets of Harare at the fall of Zimbabwe’s dictator Robert Mugabe is genuine, and one hates to be negative about the country’s future. Yet the situation is eerily similar to the scenes in Cairo in early 2011, when a popular uprising swept Hosni Mubarak from power in Egypt. More>>


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>>


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>>


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>>


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>>


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>>

Speaking Of Transport: Public Engagement On Wellington Scenarios

“Our work on possible solutions for Wellington’s transport future is ongoing, but has progressed to the stage where we’re ready to share our ideas with the public and seek their feedback to help guide our next steps...” More>>





Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election