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Joint Statement On RMA Reforms

JOINT STATEMENT ON PROPOSED REFORMS TO RESOURCE MANAGEMENT ACT
28 February 2013

Ecologic Foundation
Fish and Game NZ
Royal Forest and Bird Protection Society of New Zealand Inc.

Major environmental and recreation organisations are deeply concerned about key features of the proposed reforms to the Resource Management Act announced today.

Speaking together with Fish & Game and Forest & Bird, Ecologic’s Guy Salmon said that the proposals downgraded environmental values, but the Government did not have a mandate for this. The proposals would undermine some of the Act’s most basic provisions, and change its core philosophy.

In addition, the proposals impose disturbing, hands-on Ministerial controls on a system whose key value to New Zealanders has always been the way it provides independent scrutiny of environmental impacts.

“At present, independent panels of local commissioners, supported by the oversight of Environment Courts, are able to hear and evaluate evidence, and develop plans that reflect their communities’ values.

“Under these proposals, the independence of the system will largely be lost, and Ministers will be able to impose in specific areas the outcomes that are judged in Wellington to be the right ones.”

ENDS

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