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Denniston mine consents fail biodiversity

Denniston mine consents fail biodiversity

West Coast Environment Network is saddened by the decision to grant resource consent for the proposed Escarpment Mine on Denniston Plateau.

“The proposed damage to ecosystems and permanent loss of this stunning landscape, all on public conservation land, cannot be compensated for.” said Karen Mayhew, spokesperson. “This is a beautiful, biodiversity-rich and naturally-resilient ecosystem"

While the Commissioners granted the consent for this mine, they did not grant the 35-year term sought for the coal processing plant.

"The Commissioners were troubled by the large-scale and long-term destruction envisaged by the coal miner, and the lack of options to mitigate the loss. Their decision has clearly been compromised by the Department of Conservation withholding from the hearing the detailed scientific evidence that it has gathered on the impacts of the proposed mine.”

Despite arguments that climate change should be taken into account, the Commissioners considered that they did not have jurisdiction.

“We find it unacceptable that in this day and age consent for a coal mine can be granted without considering climate change. Any short-term economic benefit will be outweighed by the long-term impacts on communities and ecosystems of adapting to climatic change if large-scale coal mining continues.”

"While we are still considering whether to appeal the decision, it is clear that the fight to protect this unique ecosystem and landscape has only just begun."

ENDS

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