Māori-led group prepares to occupy Mt Richmond to save hundreds of exotic trees

Responding to the shocking news of grant of consent to destroy hundreds of trees on Mt Richmond / Ōtāhuhu. Link to the full release is here.

Some points from the text by Shirley Waru:

“A Māori-led Māngere-Ōtāhuhu community group is preparing to occupy Mt Richmond / Ōtāhuhu after learning that Auckland Council has recently issued a non-notified resource consent to allow Tūpuna Maunga Authority to fell hundreds of exotic trees there.

“The current resource consent is for felling 278 of the maunga’s 443 exotic trees – nearly two-thirds of the maunga’s total tree cover. … A 2018 Auckland Council survey showed this area was down to only 8% tree canopy cover – and that was before the Authority felled the olive grove here and chopped down 153 exotic trees on Māngere maunga. And it was also before the intensive housing developments that have since sprung up in the neighbourhood.

“In doing such harm to the environment, Tūpuna Maunga Authority and its supporters are harming those kaitiaki and undermining – not protecting – our culture. Tikanga (protocol) also requires engaging with communities in an honest and meaningful way, yet the Authority has publicly admitted it never talked with anybody about its specific plans to get rid of all the exotics.

22 September 2021

Report in Stuff news online is here.