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Home arrow Articles by Topic arrow RMA arrow Age of consent
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Articles - RMA
Written by Rebecca Macfie, Listener   
Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Resource Management Act reform needs to speed things up without compromising the public’s right to be heard.

Meridian Energy spent two years working through local resource consent hearings and the inevitable appeal to the Environment Court before it finally got approval to start building its new wind farm at Makara, Wellington. Two years – that’s about as long as it will take to complete the 62-turbine Project West Wind.

Local body hearings for the Central Plains Water (CPW) scheme, which would see a Canterbury valley dammed and filled with enough water to irrigate 60,000ha of farmland, finished in September after 60 days of evidence spread over seven months. The hearings have cost the development company $2 million. For community and environmental groups opposed to the scheme, the cost has run to tens of thousands of dollars and countless hours of volunteer time.

For all its faults, the RMA establishes a process for mediating conflicting views about whether and how land, water, air and landscapes should be used.

Whichever way the CPW decision goes, it’s safe to assume it will be appealed to the Environment Court where, according to the rules of the Resource Management Act (RMA), the evidence will be heard de novo – all over again, from scratch.

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Last Updated ( Wednesday, 24 December 2008 )
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