How important is Antarctica to the New Zealand Government?

The MED’s Briefings to Incoming Ministers are a wonderful institution, and a must read for anyone interested in NZ Government policy. They were released today, and survey all of the major issues that ministers need to know for their portfolio.

A group of us are of on a boat from Friday next week to promote the importance of our far south – the area south of Stewart Island – to New Zealand. There are a lot of reasons this area is important, including economic, from our claim to an enormous economic zone based on our possessions (islands) and geography, climate change with the area playing a critical role and environmental with a stunning and also critical ecosystem.

I thought to search for “Antarctica” amongst the BIM papers, and found – nothing.

I’m not pointing the finger at anyone here – the BIMs cover the top issues only. But I am using this as a key measure of how successful the group will be at getting the message out there. Will we be able to create a policy conversation about Antarctica?

Only time will tell, but in the meantime I’m counting down the days and packing warmly for Ourfarsouth.

Published by Lance Wiggs


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