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

 


Groups call for seabed mining moratorium

Groups call for seabed mining moratorium as first application goes in

23 October 2013


As New Zealand’s first application to mine ironsands from the seabed was lodged at the EPA this week, Kiwis Against Seabed Mining (KASM) leads a call for a moratorium on the untested practice.

On Monday, Trans Tasman Resources (TTR) lodged their application to mine the seabed off South Taranaki with the EPA. The EPA has yet to approve it and could send TTR back to do more homework before it opens the application up for public submissions.

“This is an entirely untested and experimental practice that we in New Zealand should take our time in considering,” said Phil McCabe, Chairperson of KASM.

“There are vast knowledge gaps in our baseline understanding of the marine environment, let alone what the effects would be from this activity. The regulatory framework is inadequate and imbalanced, and the proposed economic model is far from best case,” he said.

The call for the moratorium is, so far, supported by a number of different groups: Forest & Bird, Greenpeace, ECO, Sea Shepherd, Surfing Taranaki and Surfbreak Protection Society.

KASM believes, if implemented, the moratorium would give New Zealanders time to better understand the broader implications of such an industry operating at scale in our coastal waters in terms of recreation, environmental effects and the economic trade-offs that would ensue.

Already, the Governments of Australia’s Northern Territory and Namibia have established moratoria on seabed mining off their coastlines, arguing that there simply isn’t enough information to let it go ahead.

KASM is gearing up for the first hearing by the EPA under the new EEZ legislation.

“New Zealand is an island nation and we love our marine environment, and we love our black sands - the people of the North Island’s west coast even more so than most. TTR sure are going to have a fight on their hands,” says McCabe.

The KASM Moratorium call sets out six reasons why seabed mining should not go ahead in New Zealand:

1. Insufficient knowledge: Our baseline understanding is incomplete, therefore it is not currently possible to adequately predict the environmental affects of seabed mining.
2. Cumulative effects unknown: The marine environment is already under stress from industry, fishing and agriculture. How would the addition of this activity compound these effects?
3. Inadequate regulatory process: The new EEZ legislation falls far short of the state of the art, participatory process that is needed to protect and maintain the integrity of our marine environment.
4. New Zealanders need both time and information: We need full and free access to information and ample time to consider the long-term implications of this activity. We need to know what stands to be lost before it is put at risk.
5. Questionable economic and social impacts: In the case of ironsands, mining proposals feature predominant foreign ownership and no added value to raw resources onshore. Further, no consideration has been given to potential collateral damage to ‘New Zealand Inc’ caused by the establishment of this environmentally destructive industry.
6. Highly experimental and untested: the technology, and the impact of the world’s largest seabed mining operation threatens not only our marine environment, but also New Zealand’s international image and trade advantage.

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

'Tea Break Bill' Passes: Gordon Campbell On Bad Labour Laws And Poor Safety

By co-incidence, one of the prime dangers of the government’s new employment relations law has been underlined by the release of the death and injury statistics among workers at New Zealand ports. These are highly profitable enterprises for the port owners.

The Port of Tauranga for instance, is expecting its current full-year profit to be between $78 million and $83 million and other ports are enjoying similar boom times – but they are also highly dangerous places for the people who work on or around the port premises. At the Port of Tauranga, there have been 26 serious accidents since 2011, and two deaths. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

No Charges: Outcome Of Operation Clover Investigation

Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls in the Waitemata Police district and wider Auckland area... More>>

ALSO:

UNICEF Report: NZ Cautioned On "Stagnating" Child Poverty

An international report by UNICEF has found that child poverty rates in New Zealand have barely changed since 2008, despite similar sized countries significantly reducing child poverty during the recent recession. More>>

ALSO:

Funding Report: Two Pathways For Transport In Auckland

Commissioned by Auckland Council, the group was asked to investigate two possible pathways for raising $300 million per year ($12 billion over 30 years) to pay for the improvements needed to help fix Auckland’s transport system. More>>

ALSO:

Pay Equity: Equal Pay Win In Court Of Appeal

CTU: The Court of Appeal has made a historic decision paving the way for a substantial equal pay claim for aged care workers. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Finishing Line, And Amazon’s Woes

If the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal wasn’t such a serious matter, this would be pretty funny… More>>

ALSO:

TV3 Video: Three Die On Roads Over Labour Weekend

The official holiday period ended at 6am Tuesday, with three deaths on the roads during the Labour Day weekend. More>>

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news