Sir Alan Mark is one of New Zealand’s leading plant ecologists. He first became actively involved in conservation over the raising of Lake Manapouri, and has played a key role in linking science with conservation. He has been president of Forest and Bird, and chair of the Guardians of Lakes Manapouri and Te Anau. Sir Alan is not someone who is afraid of tackling the hard issues, saying that in his time he has ‘ruffled quite a few feathers’.
What three issues facing youth today do you feel particularly strongly about?
- - Loss of indigenous biota and ecosystems through introduced pests and further land development.
- - Continued population growth.
- - Inability to deal effectively with global warming and climate change.
What changes would you like to make to the way New Zealand is governed?
I would like to see a commitment by practising politicians to deal with relevant issues on a long-term basis rather than short-term to placate the voting public.
What actions, if any, are you planning to contribute to the constitutional review?
I am uncertain at this stage.