On 1 May 2010 the Aucklanders did us proud, with a massive march against the National Government’s proposals to start mining our precious conservation land:
Greenpeace ambassador Robyn Malcolm also puts it pretty good when she says: “For nearly 50,000 Kiwis to turn out and be prepared to speak with one voice, must tell the Government something. And that something is this: we, the people of NZ get it; we get the argument, we see what you’re up to and we won’t have it. Our land will always be more important to our identity than some extra dollars in the pockets of mining companies.”
Two of my favourite Kiwi actors, Lucy Lawless and Robyn Malcolm, are making excellent videos for the cause. Like these two:
I know New Zealand already isn’t really 100% clean and green. But we could try harder to make it so, not rip it up to extract precious minerals, leaving us with a legacy of toxic wastes and ruined landscapes.
If we nurture them, green areas grow and keep on growing for millennia to come. The native flora and fauna, the clean air, the clean water are our greatest treasure.
Visitors arrive from far-flung polluted places to enjoy our wilderness, our bush and birds, our forests and waterfalls. Once we start to cut into those areas they are forever changed, damaged and devalued.
Let’s protect our real and enduring assets
New Zealand is rich in biodiversity, with an estimated 80,000 different species of native animals, plants and fungi. Compared to other countries a large proportion of our biodiversity occurs only in New Zealand, and not in any other country.
New Zealand’s biodiversity has helped shape our national character and cultural identity. It provides recreational and aesthetic benefits and can perform a number of important services, such as providing clean air and water, reducing flooding, and maintaining healthy soils. These services support the country’s primary production and tourism sectors. …
By international comparison, New Zealand has a large proportion (33.4 per cent) of its land area legally protected for conservation purposes. … New Zealand had the highest proportion of land area protected for conservation purposes out of all 30 OECD countries.
What the government propose
Find out what the government want to do at Discussion paper | Schedule 4 stocktake | Minerals, and then have your say:
Public submissions on the Schedule 4 stocktake discussion paper are sought by
Tuesday 4 May 2010.
Ministers Brownlee and Wilkinson have extended the public consultation period by three weeks. Submissions are now due by 5.00pm Wednesday 26 May 2010.