Miner Pike River Coal has upped the stakes in the mining debate, providing shareholders with a sample submission form with answers and an emotive plea for the "voice of reason" to be heard by the Government.

The company said the debate to date had been far from rational "due in part to some seriously misleading and untruthful information being promoted by the objectors".

It said revenue from mining and petroleum generated nearly $7 billion from less than 40sq km of land in 2008, and the country needed to make more of its mineral wealth, firstly by accurately assessing what was on conservation land.

Chief executive Gordon Ward said New Zealand could not pay its bills, was borrowing $250 million a week and was at risk of becoming the "Greece of the South Pacific".

"We are leaving a massive debt for our next generation to pay back. That does not seem fair to our kids and grandkids," Ward said in the letter to shareholders.

The review of mining on restricted conservation land provided "a rare opportunity where the country can make significant gains without any significant adverse impact on our environment".

Pike River has a coking coal mine in the early stages of production that is on DoC land in the Paparoa Ranges on the West Coast.

Ward urged investors to consider who to believe - "the reasoned voice of Government and the industry or the earnest entreaties of objectors most recently fronted by a well-known TV actor".

Another miner, Newmont Waihi Gold, said in a more low key submission it made public that the Government should leave Schedule 4 conservation land alone - for now.

It believed some areas that were "absolutely sacrosanct" should never be considered for mining, no matter what minerals were there.

In its submission to the Government's mining stocktake discussion document, Newmont said Schedule 4 should not be amended, but in an echo of the Government's position, said a robust analysis of the conservation values of all the land within that category should be undertaken.

The miner has a large open-pit and underground gold operation in Waihi and is also actively exploring other parts of the Coromandel nearby with drilling rigs.

It wanted a "minor relaxation" of the current restrictions on vegetation clearance already allowed under exploration permits on conservation land.

The Government needed to "develop a hierarchy of protocols and a parallel process for identifying the mineral and conservation values of particular areas of interest" before they were removed from Schedule 4 land.

Newmont's stance is similar to that of New Zealand's biggest gold miner, OceanaGold, which said it is more interested in existing operations, part of which are on conservation estate, rather than being in a hurry to expand into new Schedule 4 land.

It said if it found gold in Coromandel, it would not mine it in an open pit but through underground techniques. The ore would be transported to Waihi, ensuring there would be no tailings at any new site, but transport would require "careful consideration".