Release: Mining on conservation land will take NZ backwards

Shane Jones’s speech today demonstrates once again that he will put his political theatrics ahead of New Zealand’s workers and their futures.

“Where is Shane Jones’s vision for the future as we get nearer to a net zero 2050? How is he going to support coal workers when the world inevitably transitions away from fossil fuels?,” Labour’s climate change spokesperson Megan Woods said.

“He is trying to sell a strategy that will take New Zealand backwards and plunder conservation land.

“In his speech today, Shane Jones attempted to greenwash the public into thinking coal mining is good for the environment and that conservation land is great for mining.

“Coal mining has no environmental benefits – especially when it’s on land that should be set aside for conservation. Coal mining locks communities into dependence on a declining industry.

“Under the Labour government, we were already doing work on critical minerals that would help us decarbonise and move away from fossil fuels like coal in a way that ensures jobs in the long term,” Megan Woods said.

“Shane Jones has said multiple times that he doesn’t care if a mine destroys habitat of native animals like kiwi or Archie’s frog. According to his hyperbole, there’s no species he won’t sacrifice for short term gain,” Labour’s conservation spokesperson Priyanca Radhakrishnan said.

“It’s chilling that the first thing on Shane Jones’ list to achieve his strategy is to pass the Fast Track Approvals Bill, a bill that is both undemocratic and destructive and puts power in the hands of Ministers like himself who by their own admission have no regard for nature,” Megan Woods said.

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