Crown has 'failed' to protect fresh water, independent body needed - NZ Māori Council

Posted 28/11/2018

NZ Herald website

A Māori water rights claim wants to see the country's rivers and lakes treated as public goods instead of a "free lunch" to commercial interests.

The Waitangi Tribunal is this week hearing the closing submissions into a claim over Māori rights to fresh water, following the government decision in 2012 to put shares in state-owned power companies up for sale.

Ownership of water - whether by Māori, nobody, or everybody - has been the focus of a debate around allocation and management issues.

The Waitangi Tribunal and the Supreme Court have both acknowledged Māori have first rights to fresh water, but the government has not supported those findings in policy.

Read the full report here.