The Crown Minerals Act 1991 and the Resource Management Act 1991 : comprehensive and integrated management of mineral resources?
The Crown Minerals Act 1991 and the Resource Management Act 1991 were intended to provide a comprehensive and integrated regime for the management of natural and physical resources. Whether these two acts achieve this goal with respect to minerals is the subject of this thesis. Chapter one introduces this issue, and describes the nature and extent of New Zealand's mineral resources. It also introduces the concepts of internal and external effects. This thesis focuses primarily on internal effects of mineral development. Chapter two discusses the concept of comprehensive and integrated resource management. It identifies the need for, and defines, comprehensive and integrated resource management. The role of law in the management of resources and its function within a market led economy is also discussed. Chapter two also describes a legislative model for giving effect to comprehensive and integrated resource management. This model demands the integration of legislation at the normative, strategic and operational levels of management. Chapters three and four describe two normative principles central to comprehensive and integrated management of mineral resources. Chapter three deals with the concept of sustainable development. The three components of sustainable development; ecological, social and economic sustainability, are discussed. Sustainable development requires that the rate of use of minerals should not exceed the capacity to find new deposits, acceptable substitutes or to recycle. Chapter four deals with the Treaty of Waitangi. It is argued that the guarantee of rangatiratanga in article two of the Treaty should be recognised in resource management legislation. Chapter five details the ownership structure for minerals in New Zealand. This is characterised by the severance of mineral title from land title and a high degree of Crown ownership. Reasons for and against Crown ownership of minerals and the possibility of aboriginal title to minerals are discussed. Chapter five also establishes the principle that the Crown is entitled to a share of the economic rent from the minerals it owns. The last section of Chapter five discusses problems which arise from the severance of mineral title from land title. Chapters six and seven describe the legislative regime which applies to minerals. The Resource Management Act 1991 is described in Chapter six and the Crown Minerals Act 1991 in Chapter seven. Both are examined in terms of the normative, strategic and operational levels of management described in Chapter two. Chapter eight considers the extent to which the Crown Minerals Act 1991 and the Resource Management Act 1991 establish a comprehensive and integrated regime for the management of minerals. It is concluded that these two Acts fall short of achieving this goal in four major respects. First, they fail to give effect to the concept of sustainable development. Second, they fail to give adequate effect to the Treaty of Waitangi. Third, the Crown Minerals Act 1991 fails to adequately specify normative policies for the management of Crown owned minerals. Fourth, they fail to achieve integrated and comprehensive management of minerals at the strategic level.
Degree Name: Master of Laws
Degree Discipline: Law
Publisher: University of Otago
Research Type: Thesis
xvi, 158 leaves :ill. ; 30 cm. Includes bibliographical references. University of Otago department: Law.