14 Jun 2024

Does New Zealand have a global responsibility to mine more locally?

From Nine To Noon, 9:25 am on 14 June 2024

A geology professor says New Zealand has a global responsibility to mine some of its critical minerals.

As the world transitions from fossil fuels to electricity, critical minerals will be needed to build necessary infrastructure like wind turbines, and electric vehicles.

Opponents have accused the Government of putting the environment and threatened species at risk in favour of wanting to grow the mining sector.

But Martin Brook - an associate professor of applied geology at the University of Auckland - says those opponents need to consider the ethics of blocking mining here while enjoying the benefits of modern technology made with minerals mined elsewhere.

The Government is consulting on a draft Minerals Strategy with the likes of antimony, vanadium, titanium and others listed as opportunities for development. 

Martin speaks to Kathryn about the question of offshoring our minerals need, while the Environmental Defence Society's chairman and chief executive Gary Taylor responds. 

A group of people holding anti-mining signs.

Photo: RNZ/Robin Martin