By Warwick Wilson
For all who love Mercury Bay and its environs and those who live and work here, it is important and urgent to stop proposed further pollution of its once pristine waters and surrounding lands.
The first action is to prevent a privately owned spat farm from being in New Zealand’s own exclusive ocean zone and introducing pollution from 700 kms of plastic ropes plus the strong probability of its vessels bringing undaria and Japanese fan worm.
I have given this a great deal of thought. How can we all win? (Including those who propose the spat farm.)
More could be achieved and for beyond our lifetimes, by working together to attain World Heritage rating for not just Mercury Bay but for a larger area and I am asking readers to consider the area that I have advanced on this map and my reasoning.
All can win
1. Ngat Hei – by far the largest land owners in the enclosed area.
2. Tourist Operators by a significant and more consistent increase in numbers from all over the world wanting to come to a World Heritage Site.
3. Current commercial fishermen by their ownership of property and moorings, and their knowledge of the waters, giving them opportunity to broaden business opportunities including tourism from within the WHS.
4. Property owners for the enhanced values of their land and structures, particularly those in settlements highlighted in the map.
5. Business owner – dealing with a larger national and international clientele
6. Coromandel Peninsula as a whole as a ‘Go To’ destination.
7. Environmentalists (which we should all be) – the general awareness of all parties and residents of just how important our magnificent Mercury Bay and environs is under a world spotlight and by protecting endangered wildlife – whales, dolphins, seals, orcas, , kiwi and our birds - for example.
8. Our nation – yet an extra draw card for international visitors.
9. Local government – a increase in financial resources to serve and enhance the facilities of this diverse and enormous coastline and its communities. Rather then ‘managed retreat’, the byline will be ‘managed rejuvenation’.
We all need to help if we are to participate in these benefits. As the appellant in the recent court case ( on behalf of Save Mercury Bay Group) against the applicants for the Resource Consent for the Spat Farm ( see page….) , I am well aware of the great amount of further research that is required and information gathering. I am not qualified as such and wish to merely remain as a motivator leaving those jobs to the best people we can find. As a result of the Court actions we undertook to prevent that spat farm, we already have some very good experts on board.
Professor Gordon Maxwell is one such person and I know he is passionate about achieving such a goal, is fully experienced in World Heriage Site procedures and has successfully assisting the World Heritage mangrove site inThailand.
I am in the twilight years of my life.
Let’s get started. – we have talked enough!
Warwick Wilson QSM
The Conservation Coast, Mercury Bay