November 15, 2023
Assault on conservation land resumes
Anti-mining activist Catherine Delahunty is concerned a bid to mine under conservation land north of Waihi will be just the start of the country being opened up to foreign minder under the incoming Government.
The former Green MP has been a witness this week in a judicial review in Kirikiriroa where anti-mining group Ours Not Mines has challenged a 2021 decision by Hauraki District Council to Canadian company Oceania Gold the right to occupy a road reserve for $1 a year for 40 years.
The company says it needs the access to build infrastructure for a giant underground mine under conservation land at Wharekirauponga, and the impact on the land above will be minimal.
Ms Delahunty says Labour should have delivered on its promise to ban mining on conservation land while it had the chance, because none of the incoming coalition partners have any policies which will protect the environment.
“None of (the policies) recognise the risk we face with fossil fuel use in mining for climate change, none of it looks at the importance of protecting ngahere for future generations, none of it understands that water is the most previous taonga we have as a species for us to survive, none of those issues are understood by them,” she says.
Ms Delahunty says incoming Prime Minister Chris Luxon has talked about sensitive mining on conservation, but that makes as much sense as saying sensible colonisation.