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Request to reopen Whakaari Island for visitors.

Yash Nandwani made this Official Information request to Chris Hipkins

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From: Yash Nandwani

Greetings, Mr Hipkins. 
I hope this email finds you well, my name is Yash Nandwani, and I'm pleased to inform you that this email will be a pleasant one. I am interested to know more about your decision to close Whakaari Island for visitors and would like to attempt to persuade you otherwise.

Firstly, Whakaari Island is a unique geological marvel and serves as a melting pot of culture, environmental beauty, and sustainability. The decision to reopen the island to visitors will not only enhance the appreciation humanity has for such a sublime setting but also boost the tourism industry and help local businesses thrive. It has been recognized, that due to the Whakaari eruption in 2019, the company 'White Island Tours' has lost over 9.1 million USD following the decision to close Whakaari Island! The money made from tourism to the island could be evenly distributed in such a way that the victims of the 2019 eruption would receive 10% of profits per annum to compensate for their loss and to fund the necessary medical treatment for them to recover.

Secondly, the opening of Whakaari Island for research purposes may be vital in understanding more about ecosystem recovery and this knowledge could be applied to our cities that are constantly being damaged by climate change and widespread deforestation. However, in order to minimize the risks of suffering from another eruption, the government could mandate that all tours commence only if the warning level is 1. This will minimize risks and continue to boost the tourism industry, promote sustainability, and raise environmental awareness. 

To conclude, Whakaari Island should be reopened, provided the government is more stringent about the regulations of the tours. This will benefit the economy, greatly promote eco-friendly practices, and boost the cultural understanding of New Zealand(Aotearoa.)

Thank you very much, Mr Hipkins, and I hope this email finds you well.

Yash Nandwani(Kellett School)

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From: C Hipkins (MIN)
Chris Hipkins

Kia ora


Thank you for taking the time to get in touch with Prime Minister, Chris


Please accept this as acknowledgement that your email has been received by
my office.


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From: C Hipkins (MIN)
Chris Hipkins

I am writing on behalf of the Prime Minister, Rt Hon Chris Hipkins, to acknowledge receipt of your Official Information Act request.

Your request will be responded to under the provisions of the Official Information Act 1982.

Yours sincerely

Dinah Okeby
Office of the Prime Minister

Authorised by Rt Hon Chris Hipkins MP, Parliament Buildings Wellington 6160

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From: C Hipkins (MIN)
Chris Hipkins

Attachment 10.11.2023 Letter to Nandwani PMO 2023 359.pdf
39K Download View as HTML

Tçnâ koe Yash Nandwani,


On behalf of Andrew Kirton, I attach the response to your OIA request PMO


Thank you for taking the time to write the Prime Minister’s office.



Ngâ mihi,


Private Secretary (Executive Support)

Office of the Prime Minister

Authorised by Rt. Hon Chris Hipkins MP, Parliament Buildings, Wellington



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From: minadviceteam

Good afternoon Yash Nandwani,


Thank you for your request to DPMC which has been transferred to the
Department of Internal Affairs. We will be treating your request as a
business enquiry.


It is public knowledge that as a result of a volcanic eruption on
Whakaari/White Island in December 2019, access to Whakaari ceased.


Whakaari is uninhabited and privately owned by the Buttle family. The
Buttle family holds the primary rights to restrict, prevent or revoke
access to the island.


The Department of Internal Affairs was not involved in decisions
concerning the closure of the island and is not anticipating decisions on
its reopening.


Kind regards,

Ministerial and Official Correspondence team



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