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

 


Call to for seabed ‘legal anomalies’ to be resolved

Call to for seabed ‘legal anomalies’ to be resolved before Chatham mining licence considered

The seafood industry wants the Environmental Protection Authority to defer any consideration on Chatham Rock Phosphate’s application to mine the Chatham Rise, until the legal anomalies of New Zealand’s Benthic Protected Areas are resolved.

Chatham Rock Phosphate (CRP) has just submitted its marine consent application with the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) to mine in a Benthic Protected Area (BPA) on the Chatham Rise.

The Chief Executive of the Deepwater Group, George Clement, says there is a large and inherent risk of massive disruption to the seafloor, the benthic biodiversity and seafood ecology in the region, if the proposal goes ahead.

“We have an unacceptable situation where the seabed in this BPA can be mined quite legally, even though it is illegal to have a fishing net touch or even go within 50 metres of it” he says.

“It’s a case of different rules for different users. In the interests of conservation, the untouched biodiversity that exists on the seabed of the BPAs should neither be trawled nor mined,” George Clement says.

“To be consistent, BPAs should have the same status for all, under New Zealand law. The CRP application at this time is going to call into question how seriously we regard marine conservation and biodiversity protection.”

George Clement says the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has classified New Zealand’s BPAs as ‘global marine protected areas’ where the primary objective is “to protect natural ecosystems and use natural resources sustainably, when conservation and sustainable use can be mutually beneficial”.

According to the IUCN, protected areas, such as the New Zealand BPAs, have the sustainable use of natural resources as a ‘means to achieve nature conservation’

George Clement says mining in the Mid-Chatham BPA will remove those benthic ecosystem protections, and the biodiversity of this pristine area, which fishing has never had an impact on, will pay the price.

Benthic Protection Areas were introduced in 2007 and cover a third of all of New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone. They were designed to protect representative and untouched ocean biodiversity from proximity of fishing gear to the seafloor.

George Clement says the phosphate has been in the seafloor for millennia, is not going anywhere, and it would make sense to wait for safer and less destructive technology to be developed before extracting it.

He also says the value of the Chatham Rise fisheries is assessed at $167 million a year, the equivalent of $2.5 billion at risk over the first 15 years of the mining proposal.
Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Patience: Drive Safe

Be patient before passing is the AA's message for drivers this Labour weekend.

"People taking crazy risks to get past other vehicles is one of the most dangerous things on the road,” says AA spokesperson Dylan Thomsen.

“The weather is looking good for the long weekend so the roads will be busy. Unfortunately, that also increases the chances of people getting frustrated and trying a risky passing manoeuvre. When they get past, there will probably be more traffic up ahead anyway so it won’t get people there faster.” More>>

 
 

Parliament Today:

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:

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news