Anti-mining info evening

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Tim Howard.
Tim Howard.

Northland Anti-mining groups are holding a workshop to school people up on ways to discourage Australian company Evolution Mining's plans to seek gold or silver at Puhipuhi.

"If you and your whanau or family are opposed to companies mining Puhipuhi and want to do something about it, this evening is for you," says the invitation from Ngati Hau Anti Mining Group and MineWatch Northland to potential participants.

The workshop will help people become familiar with direct actions to discourage the mining company from continuing exploration work at Puhipuhi. It will address community action, basic legal information, roles people might choose, practical matters and preparing for action. The invitation also asks anyone attending the workshop to bring food to share for a potluck meal.

MineWatch continues to stymie the mining company's attempts to communicate with either the protest group or the wider community, warning locals that interaction would amount to them giving Evolution a foot hold.

"The company will claim community credibility and tangata whenua support, manipulating flax roots groups for their own advantage," spokesman Tim Howard said last October.

Evolution Mining said the company had tried several times to talk with Mr Howard and MineWatch Northland, but received no reply.

"We are committed to engaging with tangata whenua, the community and key stakeholders throughout all stages of the exploration process," senior geologist and project manager Jackie Hobbins said.

Evolution Mining is conducting environmental investigations at Puhipuhi and hopes to do some explorative drilling this year if it is certain it can manage any expected environmental effects, Ms Hobbins said. The first results from the Environmental Baseline Study will be posted to Evolution's website at www.evolutionmining.co.nz. Minewatch's community action workshop will be at Whakapara Community Hall, starting at 6pm on April 21.

- Northern Advocate

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