Forest & Bird supports Fish and Game’s freshwater advocacy
28 July 2014 – Wellington
Forest & Bird media release for immediate use
Forest & Bird supports Fish and Game’s freshwater advocacy role
The independent conservation organisation Forest & Bird is concerned over allegations the Fish & Game Council has been threatened over its advocacy for freshwater quality.
It is alleged the threat came from Conservation Minister Nick Smith.
“We support the ability of Fish & Game to campaign for clean water without fear of reprisal,” says Forest & Bird Advocacy Manager Kevin Hackwell.
“It would be a serious case of a government interfering with the statutory operations of a public authority, if it was true that the Council had been threatened with a rewrite of the law if it did not back down from its campaigning for freshwater quality.”
Fish & Game is required by the law to advocate for the quality of the freshwater habitats of sport fish and game species. It funds its work from the sale of hunting and fishing fees.
“The success of opposition to large-scale irrigation projects such as the Ruataniwha dam by organisations such as Fish & Game is because those projects have not met the requirements of New Zealand’s environmental law.
“Fish & Game should not be subject to pressure because of these successes,” Kevin Hackwell says.