Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Forest and Bird appeals Cypress mine decision

12 July 2004 - Christchurch

Forest and Bird appeals Cypress mine decision

Forest and Bird today announced its intention to appeal the decision by West Coast Regional Council and Buller District Council to give the go-ahead to a destructive and polluting opencast coal mine near Westport.

"If the Cypress coal mine is allowed to go ahead, it will destroy hundreds of hectares of red tussock grasslands, wetlands, shrublands and beech forest" said Forest and Bird Field Officer Tony Lockwood. "This is prime habitat for great spotted kiwi and an endangered giant snail species."

"The proposed mine would further pollute the Mangatini Stream and Ngakawau Rivers that already run black from the effects of operations at the nearby Stockton coal mine," he said.

"It is extraordinary that Solid Energy is allowed to open a new mine in the upper Waimangaroa Valley given the massive destruction and pollution from its existing mine at Stockton," he said.

"The proposed mine is contrary to the Government's objectives of saving threatened plants and animals and addressing climate change," he said.

"At the same time as the government is implementing international obligations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through the Kyoto agreement and spending millions of dollars a year through the Department of Conservation to halt the decline in New Zealand's biodiversity, one of its own companies plans to open up a massive new opencast coal mine and destroy prime kiwi habitat", Mr Lockwood said.


The cypress mine is proposed for the Upper Waimangaroa Valley, between Denniston and Granity in the Buller District of the West Coast.

Solid Energy proposed new mine would result in: * A total disturbed area of about 400 rugby fields. This involves the removal of native beech forest and red tussock grassland for two opencast pits covering 105 ha and over another 100 ha for disposal of overburden, haul roads, office and workshop space. * Diversion of natural creeks and streams around the mine site. * Discharge of poorly treated mine water to St Pats Stream. Discharge conditions do not meet internationally accepted standards for water quality. * Destruction of Great Spotted Kiwi and endangered giant land snail habitat.

It is a strikingly beautiful area with unique landforms and rare plant communities surrounded by conservation lands. The only reason the valley itself has not been protected, in spite of repeated recommendations that it should be, is because of very strong lobbying by the coal mining industry in the past. Students and their supporters camped in the area at Easter to protest the proposal to mine the area.

The commissioner's decision to grant resource consents was released on 18 June following hearings in Westport on 3-7 May.

In March of this year Solid Energy admitted publicly to a poor environmental record


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>


Corrections Corrected: Supreme Court Rules On Release Dates

Corrections has always followed the lawful rulings of the Court in its calculation of sentence release dates. On four previous occasions, the Court of Appeal had upheld Corrections’ practices in calculating pre-sentence detention. More>>


Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>


General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Our Posturing At The UN

In New York, Key basically took an old May 2 Washington Post article written by Barack Obama, recycled it back to the Americans, and still scored headlines here at home… We’ve had a double serving of this kind of comfort food. More>>


Treaty Settlements: Bills Delayed As NZ First Pulls Support

Ngāruahine, Te Atiawa and Taranaki are reeling today as they learnt that the third and final readings of each Iwi’s Historical Treaty Settlement Bills scheduled for this Friday, have been put in jeopardy by the actions of NZ First. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Damage De-Regulation Is Doing To Fisheries And Education, Plus Kate Tempest

Our faith in the benign workings of the market – and of the light-handed regulation that goes with it – has had a body count. Back in 1992, the free market friendly Health Safety and Employment Act gutted the labour inspectorate and turned forestry, mining and other workplace sites into death traps, long before the Pike River disaster. More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news