World looks to Māori on environmental issues

By Taroi Black

Greens Party co-leader Marama Davidson is welcoming the idea of a global indigenous network which is currently being discussed right now in the United States of America around environmental issues and climate change. A group of Māori was invited to this forum in the state of Washington.

MP Davidson says, “That's right, indigenous groups are spearheading these issues.”

Māori environmental activist Mike Smith spoke at the forum, “We are committed to working together."

Currently, in Standing Rock indigenous groups and activists continue to protest against the construction of a $3.78 billion access pipeline on sacred grounds to the Sioux tribe.

“We all have similar issues around the world. As indigenous people of the world we need to make a stand”, MP Davidson said.

But here in New Zealand, the government's commitment not to grant any new permits for on-shore exploration is a victory for indigenous campaigners. 

Hine Kaa whose also part of the Aotearoa contingent in the U.S says, “They heard about our successes in the past few months regarding the government's banning which grants new permits of gas explorations in NZ. This to Māori is huge.”