6 Mar 2020

Protesters remember Save Manapouri fight

From Morning Report, 6:19 am on 6 March 2020

Fifty years ago, New Zealand was in the midst of a watershed environmental battle.

In 1970, one in ten New Zealanders signed a petition opposing a plan to build a hydro dam that would massively raise the levels of Lake Manapouri and Te Anau.

The Save Manapouri petition was successful and this weekend many of the original campaigners will meet to reflect on the campaign.

Te Anau-based campaigner Ray Willett was one of them - he told Tess Brunton the community was against raising lake levels, not hydro electricity.

Norman Kirk's Labour Party opposed the plan to raise Manapouri's level by more than 20 metres and shelved the project after its landslide election win in 1972.