Motiti residents win 'significant' battle to protect the waters around their island
Environmentalists and residents of a small island are celebrating a "significant" court win in their bid to protect fish and seabirds.
Six elderly kuia and kaumātua from Motiti Island took on the combined might of the Crown, local government, powerful iwi and the commercial fishing industry.
The tiny hapū won, backed by Forest and Bird "groundbreaking" rulings in the Environment and High courts in 2017 that gave local councils powers to regulate fishing to protect native species. But the Government appealed the decision.
Now the Court of Appeal has ruled regional councils can use the Resource Management Act to control fishing to protect biodiversity.