"The exodus of the young to Australia was facilitated by mining opportunities in that country when their skills would be better utilised in NZ"
Industry concern the decision will make New Zealand less attractive to international mining investors.
Environmental protests against oil, gas and gold mining have broken out from one end of the country to the other in the last two days.
"NZ has the potential to be a Norway, leading the world in social welfare, cradle-to-grave provision. But first we need an oil and gas industry."
Straterra says the government is right to try and improve the Resource Management Act, dismissing environmental groups' claims of a ministerial power grab as "rubbish".
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