Wednesday, April 12, 2006

My god - the RMA worked!

Hattip: Stuff
"Government ministers said today they weighed up the economic benefits of mining $400 million worth of coal and the risk to a population of rare native snails before deciding the snails must move."

What makes this even more surprising is that Chris Carter actually allowed this to go ahead. Then again I suppose it was only the extinction of a species in the balance as opposed to some Maori going for afternoon Pipi's...

"Under the mitigation package, Solid Energy would pay for:
The relocation by hand of up to 250 snails from the proposed mining site;
The establishment of an expanded new habitat for the snails that was as close to the old habitat as could be reasonably achieved;
The protection of this area with intensive predator control and a predator-proof fence;
The protection of an expanded proportion of the existing snail habitat that would not be mined, and intensive predator control across this area;
The development of a captive management programme for the snails;
The conducting of a wider survey of the surrounding environment to locate other possible areas of habitat for Powelliphanta Augustus."

Got to say - this looks like a fairly comprehensive package that makes sure these snails should survive - I'm all for the decision.  However the problem is still that "Solid Energy said recently that it had already lost about $7m in cancelled orders due to mining hold-ups pending the snail decision."
We have got to find a way to make this process faster.  Its just like the Marina - if the refusal had taken 6 months from start to finish no one would be quite so p*ssed off about it; it was the wasted years in the process that makes it so galling.
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1 comment:

burt said...

They had to move the snails, get them out of sight at least. They were making the RMA look slow.