Thank you Paul. Good morning everyone, and thank you for inviting me here today.
Sadly, I missed seeing you all at last year’s WasteMINZ conference due to other commitments. However, my colleague, Nicky Wagner, who kindly attended on my behalf, had some great things to say about her experience, and about the important role WasteMINZ plays in supporting the waste sector in New Zealand.
Firstly can I add my welcome to you all to the Forum. I'm delighted to have the opportunity to kick-off the substantial part of the day with a discussion of the Government’s plans to reform the resource management system, including the way in which we manage our freshwater.
This morning I want to talk about three key areas – the Government’s rationale behind our Resource Management Act work programme, the importance of freshwater management in New Zealand, and announce the next stage of our freshwater reform programme.
Mr Speaker, I move that the Resource Management Reform Bill 2012 be now read a first time.
I nominate the Local Government and Environment Select Committee to consider the Bill.
Resource management reform is a key part of the Government’s Business Growth Agenda. New Zealand needs a resource management system that enables growth, provides good environmental outcomes and is capable of adapting to changing values, pressures and technology.
In 2008, the National-led Government initiated a two-phase programme of reform of the resource management system.
I am honoured to represent New Zealand, and to amplify the voices of the Pacific, as New Zealand is current Pacific Islands Forum chair.
New Zealand has come to Rio with a hope – that in reaffirming and renewing the world’s commitment to sustainable development we will address the future of the planet and aspirations of future generations.
A healthy environment is essential for maintaining human life and livelihoods and for healthy economies that are sustainable into the future.
New Zealand is very conscious that resource use must be based on sustainability.
I am getting heartily sick of sitting in this House and listening to Opposition parties that claim to care about jobs, claim to care about incomes, and claim to care about raising the living standards of New Zealanders yet continually oppose every single policy that will actually create jobs, raise living standards, and create prosperity for New Zealanders. They claim to care about those things, but let us judge them on their actions. Every time this Government brings to this House a proposal to do things that will create jobs and that are creating jobs, things that will get a handle on debt, and things that are creating prosperity and a future for New Zealanders Labour, New Zealand First, and the Greens oppose it—every single time. Their policies are contradictory, inconsistent, misguided, and misleading. In fact, they are intellectually duplicitous. They promise New Zealanders that they care about those things, but they oppose every single opportunity to actually make a difference to the wealth, the prosperity, and the future of this country.
While this afternoon we have sat here and listened to petty political point-scoring from Labour, this Government is watching the fact that the international situation is increasingly more serious. Anyone who is following the situation in Europe understands that there has hardly ever been in our memory a time more serious in terms of the international and local financial management. This is a time for sensible, prudent fiscal management, and that is what this National-led Government is delivering to this country. We are focusing on getting our debt under control, so that we are not reliant on international lenders and having to pay more and more money to offshore lenders as the Labour, Green, and New Zealand First parties would want. We are focused on keeping our debt under control, getting Government debt down, and getting back to surplus in 3 years, so that we have choices, and so that this Government can deliver policies that will create more jobs, as we are.
I move, That the Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf (Environmental Effects) Bill be now read a second time. This bill responds to a regulatory gap that has meant New Zealand does not currently have a comprehensive regime in place to manage and mitigate the environmental effects of development activities in our oceans. New Zealand’s exclusive economic zone and continental shelf hold significant economic potential. The Government wants to unlock this economic potential in an environmentally responsible way. Environmental organisations and industries are agreed on the need for legislation to do this and most submitters supported the bill with amendments.
The bill as reported back reflects the Local Government and Environment Committee’s agreement on the majority of amendments proposed and its response to issues raised by a wide range of submitters. I wish to stress from the outset that this bill will not duplicate or extend existing legislation. The bill is not about oil spill response, mineral allocation, marine reserves, fishing, or shipping. These are all addressed under other existing legislation. Activities covered by the bill include seabed mining, the building of construction platforms for oil and gas exploration and drilling, marine farming, energy generation, carbon capture and storage, seismic surveying, and cable laying. The Environmental Protection Authority will make independent decisions on marine consent applications, balancing the environment and economy with input from the public and from iwi.
Good morning. It’s a privilege to have the opportunity to speak at this important event highlighting the benefits of bringing faster broadband to New Zealand.
First, can I thank the Commerce Commission for organising this conference, and for the work that has gone into the three demand side issues papers.
I particularly want to acknowledge and thank Dr Ross Patterson for his commitment to the telecommunications industry since 2007, the work that he has done in times of significant change and the even hand he is renowned for.