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

 

Council Links to Government on Marsden B Revealed

Council Links to Government on Marsden B Revealed

Auckland, 15 June, 2005: Greenpeace today renewed their ask for Marian Hobbs to call-in Marsden B coal-fired power station proposal (1), as new evidence released today revealed an appearance of Northland Regional Council (NRC) bias in dealing with the application.

Documents released under the Official Information Act show that Northland Regional Council wrote to the Minister of Energy suggesting that “central government make a submission on the application that clearly outlines the national context to power generation and the place of the Marsden B project.” (2) The documents continue saying that they are “concerned that unless a central government position is made which outlines the national context of power generation, then the Department of Conservation’s view will be perceived as representing the Government’s view.”

“By actively soliciting a specific submission which clearly was designed to support the application, Northland Regional Council has created the clear appearance of bias. We are outraged with the NRC behaviour and the public can no longer have confidence that it will decide this consent impartially,” said Greenpeace climate campaigner, Vanessa Atkinson.

Other government documents support the concerns. Four days after the request, MED officials stated that “preliminary discussions with the Minister [of Energy] indicate that he is keen for us to make a submission in support of the project.” On February 22, the day the Minister wrote saying she would not call in the application, a briefing of the Crown Company Monitoring Advisory Unit (CCMAU) stated that “It is understood that the Ministry of Economic Development will be putting in a submission in favour of Marsden B.”

“This reeks of a stitch-up. Marsden B is of national significance in its environmental impacts, particularly on climate change and in terms of our international obligations under Kyoto and the Stockholm Convention,” said Atkinson

“With this new information that undermines the public’s faith in the local council, the Minister has no choice but to call-in the project. The only sensible course is to take it from the hands of the Council and to decide it nationally.”

Mighty River Power have sought resource consent to discharge a raft of persistent and toxic substances to air, water and land and Marsden B, including 17,000 tonnes of sulphur, 16 tonnes of lead, 14 tonnes of arsenic, and 400kg of mercury every year. It would annually release over 2 million tonnes of carbon dioxide – the main greenhouse gas. If converted, Marsden B would be New Zealand's first major coal-fired power station in nearly 25 years.

“New Zealand urgently needs a sustainable energy strategy that gives national direction to the way we generate electricity by encouraging renewable technology such as wind and stopping polluting power sources such as coal,” concluded Atkinson.

ENDS

Notes to Editors:

On 8 February, Greenpeace, Whangarei Heads Citizens Association and Urquharts Bay Association wrote to the Minister requesting that she call-in the proposal, a mechanisms where a project of national significance can be decided by central Government rather than local councils. Seven other community groups around the country also supported the request which the Minister declined on 22 February.

(1) Ministry of Economic Development briefing to the Minister of Energy, 17 February, 2005. The letter from Northland Regional Council referenced in this briefing was dated 4 February, 2005.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Peters/Ardern Triumph

There are a lot of good reasons to feel joyful about this outcome. It is what so many young voters – the best hope for the country’s future – wanted.

Far more important than the implications for the Economy Gods ( is the dollar up or down? ) last night’s outcome will also mean many, many vulnerable New Zealanders will have a better life over the next three years at least.

Yet the desire for change was in the majority, across the country..>>>More


Reaction

Labour on its agreement |Peters: Post-Election Announcement Speech | Greenpeace “cautiously hopeful” about new Government | ACT - Madman on the loose | E tū ecstatic | Chamber welcomes the outcome | Greens on their joining Govt | EDS welcomes new govt | Immigrant groups worry | Feds ready to engage new coalition government | Labour Ministers of the Crown announced

 

Climate: Increasing Greenhouse Emissions Hit NZ

New Zealand is seeing impacts of excess greenhouse gas emissions in our climate and oceans, according to the latest national report from the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ about the state of the atmosphere and climate…More>>

ALSO:


Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>

ALSO:

Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>

ALSO:

Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>

ALSO:

Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>

ALSO:

Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election