Mining in NZ Parks

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Subject: Mining in NZ Parks
From: "Chris Lloyd" <>
Date: Thu, 1 Apr 2010 15:08:16 +1100
I have just returned from the shaky isles and the National Government is
indeed proposing to mine in land covered by schedule 4 (those with high
conservation status). There are already mines in conservation areas as those
following the snail debate on the West Coast would understand. The current
proposals which cover a number of areas on both islands are subject to
intense debate in NZ with daily reports in most papers (websites such as the
NZ Herald and Dominion Post are worth checking. Whether these propositions
hold any real merit economically is questionable and there is a fair element
of dog-whistle politics involved on the part of the Nationals and their
attack dogs in Act as they argue to lift the countries comparative economic
performance. Comparisons with Australia's quarry based bonanza are many and


The policy is justified on the basis that mining has moved beyond its
destructive past and can now "surgically" remove the resource with little
damage. The Coromandel proposal is following up reserves that were not mined
in the previous century when much of the peninsula was de-forested and
subject to gold prospecting. The area proposed includes sloping country
behind Thames on the Firth estuary which as many will know is one of the
major end points for Arctc migrants on the flyway. There is obvious concern
that this will impact the thousands of Godwits, knots et al and the locals
such as the Wrybill. From what I could gather from talking to a few pollies
and bird specialist these were the major concerns with the Coromandel


Chris Lloyd

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