Environment & Energy

The health and happiness of the people of Aotearoa is inextricably linked to the wellbeing of Papatūānuku.  Māori practices of kaitiakitanga have a key role to play in moving to adopting environmental, economic, and social practices that are consistent with this view.

Successive governments have failed to recognise that Papatūānuku has limited resources that need to be used respectfully. Economic growth has been put ahead of the environment, resulting in the degradation of lands, air, coastal areas and waterways.  Full public participation, including by mana whenua, is needed in all Resource Management Act (RMA) processes.

The global environmental crises of climate change and peak oil urgently requires us to develop more sustainable modes of living and to prepare for the post carbon (post oil) world that is coming.  Climate change cannot be successfully addressed without acknowledging that it is caused by the capitalist economic system which requires ever more economic growth no matter what the cost.

A more equitable distribution of resources both locally and internationally is critical to changing how people interact with the earth and care for the environment.  MANA rejects market solutions to climate change and environmental degradation as they conceal the causes of the problems and open up new ways for rich elites to profit at the expense of the environment and local communities.

MANA policy priorities are to:

  • Uphold the Treaty of Waitangi
    • Ensure Treaty obligations in the RMA, the Conservation Act, and all other environmental legislation, are understood and actioned.
    • Give hapū and iwi decision making powers equal to central and local government in developing environmental policies relating to biodiversity, prospecting, the management of coastal areas, and RMA plans so they can properly exercise kaitiakitanga over lands, coastal areas, and waterways.
    • Action Section 33 of the RMA which allows local authorities to hand over functions, powers and duties to iwi.  We will support and resource hapū and iwi and their kaitiaki to undertake these responsibilities.
    • Repeal the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act and replace with a system of tūpuna title that includes covenants for public access to beaches.
  • Protect our lands from pollution
    • Develop a land transition plan to regulate farming practices to reduce environmental damage, improve the quality of waterways, and to increase localised food self-sufficiency and reduce dependency on imported foods.
    • “De-industrialise agriculture and re-agriculturalise industry” to empower local communities, create jobs, reduce reliance on oil, and reduce pollution.
    • Ban the use of toxic chemicals wherever possible and strictly regulate for environmental impact, responsible use, collection and storage, and the health and safety of workers where their use is unavoidable.
  • Safeguard river and sea water quality
    • Maintain the mauri of all water bodies by resourcing local communities to monitor their own waterways.
    • Ensure all New Zealanders have access to potable water.
    • Water supplies will be retained as a public good, managed locally and not onsold as assets to foreign corporations.
    • All wastewater is to be treated to food gathering standard and then discharged through land (unless the soil is unsuitable), rather than directly into streams, rivers, or the sea.
    • Stormwater outlets adjacent to sealed roads will have silt traps to filter runoff.
    • Support homeowners call for tanks to be erected to collect water from the roofs of all new houses.
    • Encourage riparian planting along all waterways.
    • Restore the right to protest against harmful marine-based activities.
  • Protect the seabed and other lands from harmful exploration and mining
    • Ban fracking and cancel deep sea oil exploration and drilling.
    • Ban the development of new mining projects and instead develop sustainable land use alternatives.  Existing mines will be strongly regulated to ensure the health and safety of both workers and Papatūānuku.
    • Ensure that polluters pay to clean up the impacts of their activities, but without the use of toxic ‘clean-up’ chemicals like corexit.
    • Support research into bioremediation of toxic materials using nature’s own microorganisms.
    • Establish a body to assess the social and environmental impacts of new technologies like nano-technology, geo-engineering, and synthetic biology.
  • Support the development of local food production and supply
    • Ban the growing and experimentation of GE and GM crops.
    • Promote and resource organic food production, including hua parakore foods, and extend current funding for the establishment of maara kai by whānau, marae and communities.
    • Protect New Zealanders’ rights to save heritage seeds and exchange food.
    • Develop alternative food production, ownership and distribution methods to free New Zealanders from the clutches of international food companies and local supermarket chains.
  • Urgently address climate change and be carbon neutral by 2050
    • Develop a plan for serious carbon emission reduction that includes the establishment of a Climate Commission, the adoption of a carbon budgeting process, and a 100% renewable energy goal by 2025.
    • Work towards a coal free Aotearoa within 10 years, with no new coal mines to be opened and existing coal mines wound down, and instead invest in alternative sustainable power sources.  Coal workers will be transitioned to these new industries.
    • Repeal the Emissions Trading Scheme and replace it with policies and regulations that will reduce carbon emissions in a fair and just way.
    • Stop the privatisation of power companies and retain them as a publicly owned asset to assist with the development and roll-out of renewable energy technology for the public good.
    • Invest in the development of widespread, small scale sustainable energy generation such as solar, wind and micro-hydro by households and communities and subsidise home installations.  Enable households and communities to sell excess energy production back into the national grid.
    • Halt the installation of ocean turbines that disrupt kaimoana beds and generate heat and instead invest in the development of clean energy systems.
    • Establish a comprehensive public transport system that is affordable to all and that includes rural areas.  Urban areas will own and control their public transport systems, significantly reducing the use of cars.
  • Regenerate native forests
    • Encourage and fund the regeneration of native forests for timber and rongoa from locally sourced seeds.
    • Invest in alternatives to the use of 1080 poison to control pest populations such as bait stations and developing a national trapping industry to cull pest populations and on-sell usable by-products such as possum fur.
    • Recognise tangata whenua rights to live in and care for native forests on their land.
  • Increase opportunities for recycling and reducing waste
    • Establish a container deposit scheme for glass and plastic bottles and containers.  A deposit will be paid when a container is collected, and refunded when the container is returned.
    • Require manufacturers and importers to take responsibility for the entire life cycle of their products.
Volunteer Koha