Tuesday, August 25, 2009

"Heritage order sought by Waitaha"

image of what the mine on/in Te Ana a Raki might look like from holcim information sheet No 8.

The fight goes on...

"Waitaha wants a heritage order over an escarpment in the Waiareka Valley, which could have a major impact on the proposed Holcim (New Zealand) Ltd $400 million cement plant development.

The Maori tribe has asked Minister of Maori Affairs Pita Sharples to exercise his powers under the Resource Management Act (RMA) to protect Te Ana a Raki, also known as the Whitston escarpment, which Holcim wants to mine for limestone and tuff.

If Dr Sharples issues a heritage order to the Waitaki District Council to designate the escarpment in its district plan, it could prevent mining.

Waitaha sent a letter to Dr Sharples last week, after the Environment Court rejected an appeal against the cement plant and found the escarpment was not of outstanding natural, cultural or spiritual value.

Dr Sharples office could not comment on Friday."

The heritage order is a good move. Pita Sharples is in a tough space here and Ngai Tahu are too. Will watch with interest.

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