Restoring kaitiakitanga : evaluating the recognition of indigenous rights in assessment of environmental effects
Assessment of Environmental Effects are prepared by the applicant of a resource consent. The problem that I have identified is that as the applicant has no mandatory responsibility to recognise the rights of tangata whenua in their application, tangata whenua concerns may not be recognised in AEEs. Uncertainty as to the anticipated outcome of interaction between the applicant and tangata whenua adversely influences the recognition of indigenous rights in AEEs. The consent authority plays an important role in ensuring tangata whenua rights are recognised in the consent process. Similarly, regional and local authorities have a statutory responsibility to take into account the principles of the Treaty when preparing policies and plans. How indigenous values are recognised in policies and plans will influence the recognition of indigenous rights in AEEs. The purpose of this study is to determine how to promote the recognition of indigenous rights in Assessment of Environmental Effects (AEEs). I have the following project objectives: 1. Identify the legislative framework for indigenous rights in Assessment of Environmental Effects under the Resource Management Act. 2. Using the case study, identify what variables influence recognition of indigenous rights in an Assessment of Environmental Effects. 3. Identify why outside factors and/or legislative requirements are affecting the variables in Objective 2. 4. Develop criteria in order to promote and/or safeguard the recognition of indigenous rights. 5. Recommend a strategy to better coordinate and recognise indigenous rights in Assessment of Environmental Effects. AEEs can be used to encourage cooperation between the applicant and tangata whenua, by establishing pre-application contact. Lack of an agreed protocol for communicating between the applicant, tangata whenua and the consent authority adversely influences recognition of indigenous rights in AEEs. The consent authority's role is vital as they have access to pertinent information regarding the details of a consent application. They also act as a contact between affected parties. Initiatives to promote recognition of indigenous rights in AEEs are required by regional and local authorities to fulfil provisions of Section 12.15 of the Ngai Tahu Deed of Settlement. How indigenous values are recognised through the application of the principles of the Treaty in policies and plans will influence the recognition of indigenous rights in AEEs. Regional authorities' substantiation of perceived effects from activities on the environment must 'have particular regard to kaitiakitanga', thus integrating sociocultural and spiritual values with biophysical effects. An agreement on consistent application of the principles of the Treaty will help both parties set criteria to substantiated environmental effects.... [Show full abstract]
Keywordskaitiakitanga; environmental effects; indigenous rights; Assessment of Environmental Effects (AEEs); Integrated Environmental Management (IEM); environmental impact assessment; Resource Management Act 1991
Fields of Research050204 Environmental Impact Assessment; 050205 Environmental Management; 050208 Māori Environmental Knowledge; 180202 Te Māori Whakakaere Rauemi (Māori Resource Law)
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