OceanaGold, a significant employer in the Waitaki district, continues its commitment as a Founding Partner of the Waitaki Whitestone aspiring Global Geopark.
OceanaGold became the Geopark’s Founding Partner in 2019 with a two-year commitment. This sponsorship has now been renewed. The Waitaki Whitestone Geopark Trust signed a two-year, $40,000 sponsorship agreement with OceanaGold at Macraes mine, which will primarily support community engagement and education by Sasha Morriss, the Geopark’s geologist and educator.
Mining is a necessary element in the move towards a sustainable energy economy and is often an important economic driver in places that later become global geoparks. Areas rich in geology are traditionally first discovered through this industry and this in turn leads to their protection. The mining industry therefore has a place within geoparks but promoting good governance and transparency among these businesses is of high importance. OceanaGold has a stated commitment to its focus on the health and safety of its people and the wellbeing of their local communities, and to uphold the highest standards in environmental and sustainability practices.
Geopark Chair Helen Jansen said that this support would help the Trust considerably as it builds towards long-term sustainability. Geopark Manager Lisa Heinz said, “OceanaGold’s corporate sponsorship significantly supports our educational outreach and will help us work towards our mission - to educate our communities and visitors to appreciate our land, its heritage and its stories.”
OceanaGold Macraes Operation Environment and Community Manager Gavin Lee said that the company is pleased to be able to renew its sponsorship.
“We know what a spectacular landscape the Geopark covers and what fantastic stories it has to tell. As part of that landscape, we feel privileged to be able to continue to be a partner in the storytelling and share it with a wider audience."
[from left to right] Gavin Lee (Environment and Community Manager, OceanaGold), Sasha Morriss (Geoeducator, WWG), Helen Jansen (Chair, WWGT), Mike Fisher (Macraes General Manager, OceanaGold) and Lisa Heinz (Manager, WWG)