John Key’s mining plan released yesterday is true madness. It sacrifices New Zealand’s natural heritage to make a buck for a few multi-national mining companies. The full list of changes make it clear: Key is mounting an attack on our conservation areas on a scale that even George W Bush couldn’t stomach.
Mr Key is looking to remove the following areas from schedule 4 to open them up for mining:
Also up for the bulldozing:
Those incredible areas are worth more than a few dollars for Key and Brownlee’s mining mates.
Sadly, those schedule 4 lands listed above are just a small part of what the government is hoping to destroy and bulldoze. Buried near the back of the government’s report is the proposal to “streamline” the process for mining companies wanting permission to mine all general conservation land.
Under the new processes, Gerry Brownlee’s decree and the Minister of Conservation’s rubber stamp is all that stands in the way of mining companies getting access to our conservation lands. And Brownlee will bypass the only other safeguard – the RMA – by declaring the mining operations of “national significance” and calling them in.
Put quite simply, the only barrier to a mining operation on conservation land will be Gerry Brownlee. How scary is that? And according to the report he’s even eyeing up the other conservation areas already. These include:
It’s going to be disasterous.
If you want an object of comparison, former US President George W Bush had a similar proposal in front of him. He didn’t go there (hat tip: Pascal’s bookie). Key is worse than Bush – yep, this is getting pretty bad.
Key and Brownlee must be stopped. I urge everyone to submit online on the proposals. It’ll only take a second, and you’ll be helping save New Zealand as we know and love it.