March for Nature sends signal government cannot ignore

Today’s March for Nature sends a clear message that our country is deeply against the Fast Track Approvals Bill proceeding because the cost to the environment would be unacceptable.

“Today, thousands flooded the streets in an outpouring of opposition to the environmental vandalism this Government is guilty of,” says the Green Party co-leader, Marama Davidson. 

“The march represents a movement that embodies the core values of Aotearoa. New Zealand cares about its environment, we want future generations to enjoy the natural beauty of this nation.

“This movement stands in stark contrast to the coalition’s archaic, anti-environment agenda. This extractive and exploitative approach to the natural world will provide our economy with a measly sugar hit whilst reducing our environment to sweet nothing.

“The Government needs to recognise there is no public mandate to ram through projects which damage our precious environment, especially where these have already been declined under standard processes.

“Today's march shows there is huge public opposition to the Government's plans for crony consenting which bypasses ordinary processes and lets three ministers cherry-pick projects. 

“The list of entities invited to apply for fast track consent includes companies who have wined and dined one of the ministers or donated to their election campaigns. We deserve better than the disregard to due process this Government is showing.

“What New Zealanders expect is a government that takes seriously its duty to protect our environment and uphold its obligations to Te Tiriti. People and planet must be prioritised over industry interest.

“Let this also be a message to the Government - they should consider themselves on notice that if they continue with the Bill, they risk undermining decades of certainty in consenting. Consents that are granted under shoddy processes will be reviewed when the Greens are next in Government, and potential applicants should be aware that any consents which should not have been granted in the first place will be revoked. 

“This government must scrap the outrageous Fast Track Bill,” says Marama Davidson.