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

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Arming Police: Frontline Police To Routinely Carry Tasers

"In making the decision, the Police executive has considered almost five years worth of 'use of force' data… It consistently shows that the Taser is one of the least injury-causing tactical options available when compared with other options, with a subject injury rate of just over one per cent for all deployments." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On D-Day For Dairy At The TPP

While New Zealand may feel flattered at being called “the Saudi Arabia of milk” it would be more accurate to regard us as the suicide bombers of free trade. More>>

ALSO:

Leaked Letter: Severe Restrictions on State Owned Enterprises

Even an SOE that exists to fulfil a public function neglected by the market or which is a natural monopoly would nevertheless be forced to act "on the basis of commercial considerations" and would be prohibited from discriminating in favour of local businesses in purchases and sales. Foreign companies would be given standing to sue SOEs in domestic courts for perceived departures from the strictures of the TPP... More>>

ALSO:

"Gutted" Safety Bill: Time To Listen To Workplace Victims’ Families

Labour has listened to the families of whose loved ones have been killed at work and calls on other political parties to back its proposals to make workplaces safer and prevent unnecessary deaths on the job. More>>

ALSO:

Regulators: Govt To ‘Crowd-Source’ Regulatory Advice

A wide-ranging set of reforms is to be implemented to shake up the way New Zealand government agencies develop, write and implement regulations. More>>

ALSO:

Board Appointments: Some Minister Appoint Less The 3 In 10 Women

“It’s 2015 not 1915: Ministers who appoint less than 3 in 10 women to their boards must do better, they have no excuse but to do better,” said Dr Blue. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The 1990s Retro Proposals For Our Health System

As we learned yesterday, the reviews propose that the democratically elected representation on DHBs should be reduced, such that community wishes will be able to be over-ridden by political appointees. In today’s revelations, the reviews also propose a return to the destructive competitive health model of the 1990s. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news