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Aerial view looking over the Bay of Islands, New Zealand. by wildestanimal / Moment / Getty Images

The New Zealand government has banned tourists from swimming with the beloved bottlenose dolphins off the Bay of Islands in the northernmost peninsula of the country's north island.

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The kea is a large parrot species endangered in New Zealand. Nick Raubenheimer / EyeEm / Getty Images

The devastation that human activity has had on the diverse species of birds in New Zealand is so great that it would take 50 million years for the country's two main islands to recover its avian biodiversity, according to a new study published in Current Biology.

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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Conservationists estimate the orange-fronted parakeet population has likely doubled. Department of Conservation

Up until 25 years ago, New Zealand's orange-fronted parakeet, or kākāriki karaka, was believed to be extinct. Now, it's having one of its best breeding seasons in decades, NPR reported Thursday.

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Aerial of farmland and mountains near Seaward Kaikoura Range in New Zealand. David Wall Photo / Lonely Planet Images / Getty Images Plus

By Jordan Davidson

New Zealand's pristine image as a haven of untouched forests and landscapes was tarnished this week by a brand new government report. The Environment Aotearoa 2019 painted a bleak image of the island nation's environment and its future prospects.

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Kiwithing / Flickr / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Supermarkets around the world should be commended for banning plastic bags, but there's another single-use foe on the environmental radar: produce packaging.

For eco-conscious shoppers, one of the most frustrating things about the grocery store is seeing things like a lone potato spud shrink-wrapped in plastic.

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Mass pilot whale stranding at Rakiura/Stewart Island. Department of Conservation / YouTube

As many as 145 pilot whales are dead after beaching themselves on a remote beach in Rakiura, or Stewart Island, in southern New Zealand.

A "heartbreaking decision" was made to put down half of the animals due to their poor condition and the difficult-to-access location, a Department of Conservation (DOC) official said Monday in a media release.

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French Pass, Marlborough, New Zealand. Thomas / Flickr / Public Domain

Incredible news in New Zealand, as it has banned new permits for offshore oil and gas exploration in efforts to tackle climate change.

The Crown Minerals (Petroleum) Amendment Act passed its third reading in Parliament on Wednesday with 63 votes in favor and 55 against, New Zealand Herald reported.

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lauwen66 / Flickr

New Zealand will no longer offer new permits for offshore oil and gas exploration, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced Thursday.

"The whole world is going in this direction," Ardern said. "We all signed up to the Paris agreement that said we're moving towards carbon-neutrality, and now we need to act on it."

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The yellow-eyed penguin is found only in New Zealand. travelwayoflife / Flickr

Nearly half the breeding population of endangered yellow-eyed penguins on the island sanctuary of Whenua Hou (Codfish Island) in New Zealand have vanished, according to a recent survey.

The animals—also known as "hoiho" in Māori—are known as the world's rarest penguins and are only found in New Zealand.

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Paradise, New Zealand

New Zealand's next prime minister Jacinda Ardern has set ambitious environmental policies to confront a warming planet.

"I do anticipate that we will be a government, as I said during the campaign, that will be absolutely focused on the challenge of climate change," said Ardern, whose Labour party has signed a coalition agreement with the New Zealand First party.

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Environmentalists in New Zealand are increasingly angered that bottled water companies are extracting and exporting the country's pristine and finite freshwater sources for private profit—and paying very little for this privilege.

As the Guardian reported, Coca-Cola, "which has an annual revenue of over $60bn, last year paid NZ$40,000 to the local council for the right to extract up to 200 cubic meters of water a day" from Blue Spring in Putaruru, which is considered a national treasure.

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