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Gold Fever Comes In Many Forms

26 July, 2017

Big discoveries once sparked gold rushes, but today some say leave it in the ground.

Gold Fever Comes In Many Forms

INSIGHTS ABOUT THE NEWS - A “massive find of quality gold” valued in the tens of millions of dollars in NZ might be greeted by some with as much enthusiasm as Team NZ winning the America’s Cup. Instead, the headlines were made by anti-mining protestors demonstrating at the site against the latest announcement by New Talisman Gold Mines.

As reported in the Trans Tasman Political Alert, the company says its prospecting at the Karangahake Gorge site near Paeroa has turned up high levels of gold. CEO Matthew Hill reported the Dubbo resource has lifted by 102% to over 300,000oz of gold.

Hill says “the development of this national treasure which historically employed thousands of people before slowing down due to a world war is once again well on its way to production. We are delighted at the support by most of the local community.”

Reports though spoke of a “bitter standoff between a local community and miners”. There are those who opposed to mining of any sort and those who object to the 0.4 hectare mine being on the Department of Conservation’s estate.

New Talisman was granted a 25-year mining permit to prospect and mine on conservation land in Karangahake in 2009, using an existing underground mine which has been in operation at various times between 1892 and 1992.

Green Party MP Catherine Delahunty says gold mining on Karangahake mountain would “turn a beautiful recreational park and sacred mountain into an industrial zone.”

The tension between environmental protection and economic development is a continuing balancing act throughout NZ, where, to the anger of some, it is legal to mine on Conservation land if the right permits are granted. More than 40 mining consents on Conservation land are active, though most of these are small scale.

It seems gold can still induce fever both in desire to dig it and wishing to leave it in the ground.

For analysis and further updates see this week’s edition of the Trans Tasman Political Alert


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