It’s so great to see you all here today for this March For Nature.

It is wonderful to see tens of thousands of people using their voices to protect planet earth.

Russel Norman speaks to the 20,000 assembled in Aotea Square for the March for Nature
Russel Norman speaks to the 20,000 assembled in Aotea Square for the March for Nature

We love this living planet and that is why we say no to the fast track bill.

We love this beautiful country and that is why we say no to the Government’s war on nature.

The great challenge of our time is not how to build another dam or another coal mine, we know how to do that. 

The great challenge of our time is for humanity to learn and indeed relearn how to live well within the ecological limits of a finite planet.

We can have abundance and a good life for us and our children, but we must stop the destruction of nature.

We must stop those who would destroy nature for short term profit.

The vast majority  – nine out of every ten New Zealanders, when surveyed, do not want development if it causes more damage to nature.

Standing here today in our tens of thousands we represent that overwhelming majority of New Zealanders.

And we say to this Government – you must listen to the voices of the nation, not the dollar signs of your corporate donors.

And we issue this warning to any company that tries to use the fast track bill: none of your illegitimate resource consents will be guaranteed. 

Future parliaments can repeal every single one of the resource consents issued under this corrupt fast track bill.

And expect resistance from the people of Aotearoa.

There will be no seabed mining off the coast of Taranaki.

There will be no new coal mines in pristine native forests. 

We will stop them just like we stopped the oil exploration companies. We disrupted them until they gave up. 

In 2017 I swam in the ocean in front of an oil exploration ship 100 kilometres off the coast of Napier to disrupt their work. 

Thousands of acts of resistance by Maori and Pakeha across this nation meant that the oil companies gave up and they are not coming back, because they know we will do it all again.

To them it’s just money, to us it is our very future.

For us and our children to live free from the fear of catastrophic climate change, we must say no more coal mines, no more oil exploration. 

For us and our children to have the freedom to live on a planet full of abundant magical life, we must place constraints on companies that would destroy nature for profit.

We must stop Governments from fast tracking ecological destruction.

And we will. 

Friends, we have to, we have no choice. 

There is no planet B for us to retreat to. 

We must make our stand right here on planet earth 

And for the sake of ourselves, our children and all the amazing living creatures with which we share this beautiful blue planet, we must prevail.

And we will.