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 Last Night’s Debate, And The Collins Accusation

Debating is a peculiar discipline in that what you say is less important than how you’re saying it. Looking poised, being articulate and staying on topic generally wins the day – and on that score, Labour leader David Cunliffe won what turned out to be a bruising encounter with Prime Minister John Key last night on TVNZ.

Cunliffe marshalled his points better, kept Key off balance and – more often than not – was in control of the general tenor of the contest. Labour supporters would have been heartened, and given some belated reassurance that maybe the change of leadership last year had been the right decision. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Gordon Campbell: On Winston Peters' Latest Bout Of Immigrant Bashing

It is only one poll, but rather than cannibalising each other's vote, Colin Craig and Winston Peters do seem to be managing to find the room to co-exist... Few are questioning how Peters got to this happy place, and what it says about the mood of the electorate. More>>

ALSO:

More Immigration News: First People Trafficking Charges

The first people trafficking charges in New Zealand have been brought by Immigration New Zealand (INZ)... The defendants have been charged under the Crimes Act 1961 for arranging by deception the entry of 18 Indian nationals into New Zealand. More>>

Collins 'Misinterprets Media Reports': "Too Compromised To Remain Justice Minister"

Bizarre claims by Judith Collins this morning that she had been cleared of inappropriate behaviour by the Privacy Commissioner demonstrates she is too compromised to remain Justice Minister, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. More>>

ALSO:

Labour On Climate Change: Focus On The Now For The Future

A Labour Government will put in place a comprehensive climate change strategy focusing on both mitigation and adaptation, establish an independent Climate Commission and implement carbon budgeting, says Labour Climate Change spokesperson Moana Mackey. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On National’s Housing Assistance Plan

So, as many as 90,000 people could derive some benefit from National’s housing assistance plans for low and middle-income earners... Yet in reality, the benefits seem likely to be insignificant, and they will be skewed towards those at the top end of the income group that’s supposedly the target. More>>

ALSO:

Election Data Consortium: National’s Worst Case Scenario At Stage One?

A month out from the general election and ipredict traders are still forecasting National’s vote to slip below current polling levels and there is potential for it to fall further. More>>

ALSO:

From The Scoop Video Archive: PM Says SIS "Told Me" About OIA Release

In a press conference immediately following an controversial OIA release of notes on an SIS briefing to then Labour leader Phil Goff, Key said "at that point [Tucker] told me he'd release it ...". Since the release of Nicky Hager's 'Dirty Politics' Key has denied being personally informed and said references by officials to 'the PM' being told briefed referred to his office. He now says the same about his own statement. More>>

ALSO:

  • Scoop Video in the news - New questions over Key claims | NZ Herald News - Stuff.co.nz
  • Earlier - Felix Marwick: Laying out facts over SIS documents - Newstalk ZB
  • Labour - Director’s letter contradicts Key’s claims
  • ACT - The Letter - 26 days to go
  • TV3 Video - Housing issue nudges Dirty Politics aside - David Cunliffe: Key's SIS explanation 'defies belief' - SIS leak came from Key's Office - Goff - Key 'categorically denies' Slater OIA discussion - Video: Key faces more Dirty Politics questions

  • TVNZ - Winston Peters: ‘Dirty Politics' is a new low
  • The Nation - Debate Between Grant Robertson And Russel Norman
  • NZ First - “The Words Mean What I Say They Mean”
  • Get More From Scoop

     

    LATEST HEADLINES

     
     
     
     
     
    More RSS  RSS News AlertsNews Alerts
     
     
     
    Politics
    Search Scoop  
     
     
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news