Mining is part of New Zealand’s heritage – symbolised on the national Coat of Arms - and is a significant part of our economy today. The industry, including oil and gas, employs directly and indirectly around 14,800 people, providing, for example, one-third of household income on the West Coast of the South Island, and is a dominant employer in Waihi.
Mining is also an essential industry. Minerals are integral to every aspect of our lives. They are a direct or indirect component of everything New Zealanders consume, whether produced locally or sourced from abroad. As the saying goes – “if you haven’t grown it, you have to dig it.”
Many mines in New Zealand are quarries, and most of these produce aggregates for local roading and construction.
One would be excused for thinking that mining in NZ should be celebrated and encouraged, as integral to our way of life in the 21st Century, as benefiting the economy and society, and carried out in an environmentally responsible way.
Sadly, it is increasingly the case that the resource debate in New Zealand is subject to misinformation.
An ideological campaign is underway against: petroleum, coal and lignite; and minerals and energy development in sensitive areas, such as the oceans, and public conservation land.
The consequences for the mining sector and for the nation’s economy are potentially serious, if the anti-resource campaign succeeds.
Ultimately, New Zealand may be seen to be too hard a place to do business and investors will go elsewhere. New Zealand will be the loser.
That said, there are legitimate issues to do with health, safety, environment, iwi, communities, and the economy, and they are complex. There is a debate to be had.
Straterra participates actively in public policy and legislative processes, and in public debate, and has consistently done so in a reasoned and reasonable way.
Unfortunately, the anti-resource campaigners do not share our commitment to a collaborative approach, or to being acountable for what they say. Rather, the approach has been to build extreme scenarios based on fantasy or imagination.
Straterra believes the majority of New Zealanders are interested in a reasoned and informed debate on the issues. In the following pages, we expose the most commonly-expressed myths and fallacies around mining, in the belief that sunlight is the best disinfectant – we let the facts and evidence speak for themselves.
Mining is an integral part of New Zealand's heritage. It is also controversial. Straterra welcomes public debate on the issues. Unfortunately, in the course of this debate, a number of fallacies have been advanced as justification against mining.
Click on the following links to expose the myths on mining: