It has been negotiating since September over how New Zealand Aluminium Smelters will shut the plant down in late 2024.
Now, Finance Minister Grant Robertson has told the majority owner Rio Tinto’s chief executive Alf Barrios they needed to provide more information.
In a letter released to RNZ and sent last week, Robertson criticised Rio’s approach at talks in January.
“We were again disappointed that your approach did not address the remediation activities and outcomes which we have repeatedly outlined as a non-negotiable bottom line for the Crown,” he told Barrios.
Cough – as TDB was pointing out in July of last year, why trust Rio Tinto with pollution costs?
Are we to expect a company that will shut down a smelter because of a $46m loss and who already has a deplorable reputation for lying and deceiving the clean up of toxins is actually going to spend quarter of a billion to clean up the entirety of Tiwai Point?
A clean up the Government barely has any direct answers over?
One of the real reasons we can’t shut down Tiwai Point is because the polluters have us over a toxic barrel. The second they walk out, they will leave this toxic legacy with us to deal with and they will laugh when we try to take them to court.
We have already seen examples of this very company doing the dirty on us with toxic waste, and that would have cost them a couple of million to clean up. Why the fuck do we think they will chump up with the $250million to clean up the entire site?
We need to seize some type of leverage here because they will leave us with this poisonous wound as soon as they need to.
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