Whitewater NZ are delighted that Meridian Energy has abandoned plans to dam the Mokihinui River

Release date: 
Tuesday, May 22, 2012 - 00:00

Whitewater NZ are delighted to see Meridian Energy’s announcement that they will abandon their plan to dam the wild and scenic Mokihinui River on the West Coast.

Whitewater NZ Conservation Officer Tony Ward-Holmes says that our last remaining wild rivers do not need to be dammed to meet our power needs for the future. There are other schemes already consented on the West Coast to provide for local power demand and other alternatives, such as geothermal and wind that are being built now across the country.

"This decision has meant that the Mokihinui will remain a pristine river valley, providing outstanding wilderness kayaking and rafting opportunities."

"Whitewater NZ prefers to work with parties at an early stage to avoid expensive and time consuming processes in the courts. After a conservation battle that feels like it took forever, this is an amazing result," says Tony Ward-Holmes.

Whitewater NZ President Polly Miller commented that this decision demonstrates that those opposing the scheme in the Environment Court had a strong case, and Meridian has made a wise decision not to continue the process further.

In October 2010 Whitewater NZ organised over 120 activists, photographers and rafters and kayakers to paddle the Mokihinui, showing their opposition to the proposed dam. Described in the video a Tale of Two Rivers, the Mokihinui River will continue to provide a beautiful untouched environment for adventure, conservation and eco-tourism. More info on http://rivers.org.nz/a-tale-of-two-rivers.

In a process which has taken countless volunteer hours, Whitewater NZ would particularly like to thank leading kayakers in Canterbury and on the West Coast for their tireless contribution, and the support from our legal team.

About Whitewater New Zealand

Whitewater NZ works to protect and conserve rivers, improve opportunities for kayakers to enjoy our whitewater resources safely, and protect public access to rivers for recreational use. We are the primary advocate for the preservation and protection of whitewater resources throughout New Zealand. More information on: rivers.org.nz.

Whitewater NZ Contacts:

Conservation Officer
Tony Ward-Holmes

Polly Miller