Author: tjonescan

New Bathurst coal mine as much use as tits on a bull

by Rosemary Penwarden Bathurst Resources’ (BRL) shareholders were treated to a tale from fantasy land last week. The fantasy is that Bathurst’s newly acquired coal exploration permit near Waimate will service Fonterra’s expanding Studholme milk drying plant, reported an energy trade news service. What Bathurst doesn’t appear to understand is that the new Studholme plant is never going to be built. At their consent hearing a year ago Fonterra downgraded their grandiose plan from a ten-fold expansion of the current setup to a four-fold one, but even that will now never go ahead. There isn’t the milk – cow numbers are down by about half a million and those would have to be restored before even the existing capacity would be fully used. Much can change in a year; public opinion for one. New Zealanders have had enough of shit in our rivers and aquifers. Public opinion is firming against more cows – even against the number we have now. The evidence about water keeps mounting and being better understood. Fonterra are feeling that. They themselves reported in big type in a farming paper a few months ago that their capital works programme is now complete. The Studholme expansion is a fizzer. Is Bathurst trying to claim to potential investors that it has bright prospects? “Build it (mine it) and they will come”? Public opinion is also firming against coal. We...

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Submit by Thursday Against the Proposed Te Kuha Coalmine

Kia Ora Koutou You may have recently seen TVNZ’s The Sunday Programme’s “Back to Black” story on Te Kuha, a new coal mine proposal on the West Coast.   If you haven’t, it’s worth a look. CANA has been following the progress of this mine for quite some time. We have made submissions on various aspects: including one about a year ago on the request for access to mine on the DOC conservation estate – Mt Rochfort. The mine would take off the top of this mountain, in the DOC estate, which contains rare bird and plant species – like...

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Celebrating A Win: We’ve Stopped A Planned Open-Cast Coal Mine On The Panirau Plateau

Opposing new and expanded coal mines is hard work, so I think it’s always good to celebrate our victories. And we have a victory to celebrate: Mokau South Resources Ltd has withdrawn all their resource consent applications for their proposed Panirau Plateau coal mine. This project would have involved strip-mining an area of considerable ecological significance in the Mokau River catchment on the west coast of the North Island. Even by the usual standards of the coal industry, it was a particularly idiotic project and a particularly shonky resource consent application. But we still took it seriously. CANA, working with Waikato Climate Action and Climate Justice Taranaki, made sure there were plenty of submissions against the project, ensured Waikato Regional Council took their responsibilities under the Resource Management Act seriously (in stark contrast to some other local bodies we could name), and explored some other avenues of putting pressure on the project. The resource consent hearing suffered delay after delay, so it wasn’t a huge surprise when we got a letter late last week saying the resource consent application had been withdrawn – but a win is a win, so when we get them, let’s enjoy them! This is also timely given the news that we are facing major new coal projects on the West Coast, backed by a spineless and clueless Government. Coal mining proposals are, at bottom, deeply stupid projects put forward by deeply...

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May 5-13: Join The Global Divestment Mobilisation!

Are you tired of seeing business as usual all around you in the face of a worsening climate crisis?  Already know you want to take action? Find and sign up for the New Zealand action nearest you. Help seize the moment. Join one of these Global Divestment Mobilisation events happening near you between May 5 and 13.  They’re organised by people in your community to highlight the deadly climate impacts being driven by the fossil fuel industry and call on our local institutions to take a moral stand by breaking off their ties with this industry. In our region, the biggest new planned...

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Join The New Zealand Marches for Science, Saturday 22 April

Science, and the principle that public policy should be informed by evidence based on observable fact, is under attack – not just in Donald Trump’s America, but in New Zealand as well. Two recent local examples: When the Prime Minister’s own science adviser produced a report highlighting the serious degradation in New Zealand’s fresh water quality, Environment Minister Nick Smith called its conclusion “simplistic” in Parliament (see his second answer to Question 4). The Prime Minister refuses to acknowledge the scientifically proven link between climate change and the greater frequency of extreme weather events such as cyclones. And so it’s high time for people who support science – including climate science – to speak up in its defence. On Saturday 22 April, you can do just that. Here is the information you need to take part. NZ Marches for Science Website: Facebook: On Saturday 22 April (Earth Day) Marches will be held in the following centres – click on your nearest centre’s link for event details: Auckland Palmerston North Wellington Christchurch Dunedin Queenstown (we don’t have any details for this one yet, sorry) There is info about each of the marches on the website and Facebook page. The New Zealand marches will be the first in the world. The aims of the NZ marches are: To highlight that science is international To acknowledge that good scientists can be political To promote greater...

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