The mining ban: What it is and why it matters
The New Zealand government has made a new announcement to state that no new mines will be permitted on conservation land, in a move that has quickly been applauded by groups such as Forest & Bird.
The announcement came from Eugenie Sage, the Minister of Conservation, who stated that “the new Government will strengthen the protection for public conservation land by making it off-limits for new mining”.
She went on to explain that public conservation lands have been created in order to help nature to thrive, and also so that New Zealanders and visitors alike can enjoy them. Allowing mines to be built in these areas would run counter to those goals, she said, as it would destroy vegetation and habitats and change the natural landscapes.
Sage also noted that New Zealand is experiencing a “biodiversity crisis”, with as many as 4,000 plants and wildlife species threatened with extinction, and said that conservation lands are one way to offer them protection.
Forest & Bird, a leading conservation group that promotes nature throughout the country, has been quick to applaud the announcement.
The group’s Chief Executive Kevin Hague released their own announcement, saying “we are delighted that the Government recognises that protected conservation land means just that. It’s protected”
While the group is still hoping to see more work done for conservation, such as the banning of new coal mining in all areas and giving the Denniston Plateau further protections, they are excited about the new move regarding conservation lands.
Likewise, we at Habitat Tours agree that any move in the direction of more conservation for our flora and fauna is a positive one, and we will continue to educate and inspire visitors about the wonderful New Zealand outdoors on our nature tours from Auckland.
Tristan Cullen - Passionate Conservationist