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

 


Save Fiordland Welcomes Decision From Minister

Save Fiordland Welcomes Decision From Minister


Today the Minister of Conservation Dr Nick Smith has issued a media statement saying he will take responsibility for determining whether the proposals for a tunnel through Fiordland and Mt Aspiring National Parks and for a monorail through the Snowdon Forest area will go ahead.

Both private developments would cut through public conservation land. These wilderness areas, and the endemic species within them, have such outstanding natural values and are of such international significance that they have World Heritage status.

Save Fiordland, which is campaigning against these proposals, has welcomed the announcement that such an important decision will be made at the top. Chair of Save Fiordland, Daphne Taylor said today: "We hope that the decision reflects his understanding of how significant that World Heritage status is on every level - including the pride and sense of guardianship we New Zealanders have in our environmental heritage, the unique kiwi lifestyle that goes with working and playing within these wilderness areas, our obligations to future generations and the international community and also the economic benefits the World Heritage status bestows on our 100% pure branding, the tourism industry in particular."

Save Fiordland calls on the Minister to ensure his decisions are made within the law and intent of numerous conservation management documents that guard carefully against developments of these kinds in New Zealand's specially protected areas including:

Conservation Act 1987
National Parks Act 1980
Fiordland National Park Management Plan 2007
Mt Aspiring National Park Management Plan 2011
Conservation Management Strategy for Mainland Southland and West Otago
Ngai Tahu Deed of Settlement.

This is in addition to the obligations the New Zealand government has as host nation to “take appropriate legal, scientific, technical, administrative and financial measures necessary for the identification, protection, conservation, presentation and rehabilitation of this heritage” (World Heritage Convention, 1972), this heritage being that of Te Wahipounamu - the South West New Zealand World Heritage Area.

Chair of Save Fiordland, Daphne Taylor, said today: "Now the consultation process is over we are glad the new MInister is standing up to his responsibilities as the elected politician in charge of the Department of Conservation, and we urge him firstly to take heed of the laws and management documents protecting our conservation land and forbidding such projects, and secondly to ensure he has a full understanding of these documents and the outpouring of dismay by people throughout New Zealand and the world, expressed in responses to the consultation and throughout the public campaigning."

When appointed Minister of Conservation in January this year, Dr Nick Smith said that he felt very strongly about 'the conservation estate', 'the very special responsibility for New Zealand around those species that only exist in NZ' and about 'that great kiwi lifestyle that New Zealand is famous for' and 'ensuring all of that is available for future generations'.

While welcoming that public commitment and the MInister's decision to take responsibility for the decisions, Save Fiordland is concerned that the Minister has failed to mention in his media statement any intention to meet with Save Fiordland or other campaigners against these proposals despite Save Fiordland having proffered him an invitation, upon his appointment last month.

"We feel it is highly appropriate that he does meet with us. His stated intention is to take advice from the Department of Conservation, the New Zealand Conservation Authority, and also to meet with the applicants for each project. If the Minister does not meet with us he will not have felt, first hand, the strength and breadth of opposition against these totally inappropriate proposals on our, the New Zealand public's, conservation land," said Taylor. "We want to be proud of, not fearful for, our world heritage."
ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

To date, the Opposition has continued to occupy itself with the marginalia of the issue. E.g. whether Key did or didn’t know whether Barack Obama would be present at the US briefing last week on IS, or whether New Zealand’s military involvement is or isn’t already a fait accompli.

It might be better to tackle the issue, head on. Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn.
More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Tea Breaks 'Gone By Lunch Time'

“How cynical that on the eve of Labour weekend, the National government is pushing through legislation that takes away the statutory right to tea and meal breaks along with collective bargaining protections, and makes vulnerable workers jobs even less secure." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Tertiary Education: Students Doing It Tough As Fees Rise Again

The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. More>>

ALSO:

Housing, Iraq: PM Press Conference – 20 October 2014

Prime Minister John Key met with press today to discuss:
• Housing prices and redevelopment in Auckland
• Discussions with Tony Abbott on the governmental response to ISIS, and New Zealand’s election to the UN Security Council More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news