Coromandel Watchdog of Hauraki is getting legal advice as they scope filing a Judicial Review against the decision made by Ministers David Parker and Grant Robertson to approve land being used for a new tailings dump at Waihi.
“ We are seriously pursuing this option and have informed the Minister and Oceana Gold via our Barrister. The decision which undermines the Minister of Lands Information earlier rejection of this plan is not robust. The Ministers have taken the power from Eugenie Sage and with a very similar application they have decided to ignore issues including the longterm economic cost benefit to the country, the permanent contamination of 178 hectares, the fossil fuels and environmental risks. The first decision by Minister Sage looked at the modern risk context and the need for sustainable employment, the second is a rubber stamp for the existing jobs without a plan for jobs in the long term or real national benefit” says Watchdog Chairperson, Catherine Delahunty.
Ms Delahunty said that claims of $200 million of exports made no sense given that Oceana Gold ( an overseas company) produces the gold and sends it with no added value to an overseas mint in Perth.” They make the profit not Waihi or the the country” she said.
She said that Judicial Review was a very serious step for a voluntary group to consider but it was clear Oceana want the new tailings so they can dig up more of Waihi and advance their plans to mine under the Conservation land at Wharekirauponga.
“ Mining for gold is not the future for our region and the use of fossil fuels to extract a metal that should be recycled from waste is one very good reason to reject this application. This decision by Ministers Parker and Robertson needs legal scrutiny via Judicial Review.
We will be asking people who care about the environment, good economic planning and fair decision making to help us fund this proposed action. The Government should be backing their Minister of Lands Information and protecting food producing land, not facilitating this dinosaur industry to expand on unsound grounds” Ms Delahunty said