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

 


RMA onslaught must stop, warns Forest & Bird

RMA onslaught must stop, warns Forest & Bird

Environment Minister Amy Adams’ latest Resource Management Act reform proposals, published for discussion today, are a head-on assault on the Act and must be stopped, says Forest & Bird.

“New Zealanders need to be deeply concerned about these proposals, which take apart important protections for the places where we live, and challenge communities’ right to be heard in their own plan-making,” says Forest & Bird Conservation Advocate, Claire Browning.

“The proposals are even more significant than the government’s former ideas about mining our national parks. They’re about managing natural resources all over the country, where New Zealanders live every day,” she says.

The proposals would see a disturbing level of hands-on ministerial control and, in several respects, will tend to marginalise or inappropriately constrain the involvement of submitters and communities in local resource consenting and plan-making.

The Bill would significantly extend central government’s powers to intervene in planning processes, and direct local councils, including allowing the Minister to directly amend an operative plan.

“Already, we can see this approach illustrated in the new planning requirements for trees currently proceeding through Parliament, where communities will be directed about what they are not allowed to do - we’ve seen it in Canterbury and, more recently, in provisions for the first Auckland plan,” Claire Browning says.

If the proposals are implemented, regulations could direct non-notification as a standard for some activity types - mining and mineral exploration, for example, meaning communities would have no say.

Claire Browning says Forest & Bird was particularly disturbed by the bald and false assertion that today’s values and priorities are not well-enough reflected in the Act, based on flawed advice previously comprehensively challenged by a coalition of all main environment groups, and resource management experts.

The economic value of environmental protection, and our clean green brand, has grown enormously since the Act came into force, 22 years ago.

“The Minister is now proceeding with what has been the plan all along: rewriting some of the Act’s most important provisions, as well as altering its core philosophy. Mrs Adams has repeatedly stated her desire to go back to first principles, but she is doing so without bothering to undertake the very comprehensive process of getting a bipartisan mandate that was done before 1991,” Claire Browning says.

Tools already available under the existing legislation had not been developed to full effect. “The Minister has neglected these options: it seems to be about imposing her preferred solution on us all, and writing that power into law for the future,” Claire Browning concludes.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Mana Māori: Kawenata Unites Kaupapa Māori Parties

The Māori Party and Mana Party have signed a historic agreement today to unite Māori politically.

Māori Party president Tukoroirangi Morgan said the kawenata or agreement was a huge step forward for Māori in the lead up to the general elections.

"Today is an important day for the Māori nation because today is when the country's only two kaupapa Māori political parties unite to work tactically together in the best interests of our people," says Mr Morgan. More>>

ALSO:

.

 
 

Immigration: Short Reprieve For Nine Indian Students

A temporary hold on deportations of nine Indian students is a step in the right direction but the Government urgently needs to implement safeguards to stop further injustices to more international students, the Green Party says. More>>

EARLIER:

Welfare: WINZ Breaching Privacy Laws With WINZ Vetting Rules

E tū, the union for security guards, says WINZ may be breaching privacy laws with its new screening process for people visiting WINZ offices. The vetting requires WINZ security guards to check photo ID and whether visitors to WINZ offices have an appointment.More>>

ALSO:

Turnbull Visit: Leaders’ Talks Cement Trade Relations, Science Agreement

Mr English met with Prime Minister Turnbull in Queenstown today to discuss common approaches to bilateral and international issues, including trade and science and innovation. Mr English also thanked Mr Turnbull for Australia’s offer of support for those fighting the fires on the Port Hills in Christchurch. More>>

ALSO:

Youth Guarantee: Upskilling Fund Used For Retraining

News that one in five of the people enrolling in Youth Guarantee already hold qualifications at the level they’re enrolling in highlights the failure of the scheme to reach the disengaged young people it was set up to assist, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. More>>

ALSO:

Port Hills Fire: Midday Update, Monday 20 February

• 9 homes destroyed
• 2 homes with partial damage. Damage includes things like cracked windows, heat damage.
• 3 properties with damage to other external structures e.g sheds or outbuildings More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On What Trump May Mean For Us

So far not much effort has been put into tracing the possible implications for New Zealand of the stream of executive orders and tweets that have been pouring from the Oval Office. Unfortunately, we may not simply be drive-by rubberneckers at this car wreck for much longer. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news