The decision not to allow a monorail in Fiordland is a victory for all the New Zealanders who stood up for the environment, the Green Party said today.
More than 18,000 people signed Save Fiordland’s petition to protect the Te Wāhipounamu South West New Zealand World Heritage area and stop the monorail, and now the Government has finally listened.
“National clearly didn’t want to be attacking the environment this close to the election,” said Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei.
“This is another case of New Zealanders standing up to protect the places we love, and winning.”
The monorail would have had a significant impact on the Te Wāhipounamu South West New Zealand World Heritage Area and habitat for some of New Zealand’s treasured species like the mohua, recent winner of Bird of the Year 2013, and our long-tailed bats. The Department of Conservation identified that the possible effects on the Snowdon Forest bat population ‘could be catastrophic’.
“A Department of Conservation report from last year released today highlights that it is not only our endangered species like mohua at risk but also significant habitats like wetlands,” said Mrs Turei.
“Whilst this decision is great, this Government still advocates for deep sea drilling and rivers that are not safe for swimming.
“This decision shows that the voices of New Zealanders who love and protect our beautiful environment can be heard loud and clear,” said Mrs Turei.
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