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Mackenzie Country symposium this week

21 November 2010

Media Release: Mackenzie Country symposium this week

The Environmental Defence Defence Society (EDS) says it is pleased with well over 120 registrants for its Mackenzie Country Symposium to be held in Twizel on Friday and Saturday of this coming week.

"There is a lot of interest in the Symposium which will bring together key stakeholders with an interest in the future of this iconic part of New Zealand," said EDS Chairman Gary Taylor.

"We have a wide variety of experts and local people involved in the program.

"We are especially pleased to have the proponents of the controversial cubicle farming projects speaking at the event. Whilst EDS won its Court Case against those projects, we would much rather talk through the issues than litigate.

"What that case showed was the whole of New Zealand values the Mackenzie Country.

"The Mackenzie basin with its outstanding landscapes, brown tussock grasslands, high ecological values and surrounding mountains is of national importance. The point of the Symposium is to bring together those national interests with the local interests to start a discussion about the way forward.

"We are following the collaborative process pioneered by the Land and Water Forum which was itself a great success.

"If people are prepared to approach the Symposium in that same collaborative spirit, with open minds and a willingness to listen to all sides, we might be able to work out a way forward for the area based on consensus rather than conflict.

"People are still able to register for the event at www.eds.org.nz and it is open to the media," Mr Taylor concluded.

ENDS

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