One of New Zealand’s better-known award-winning writers – Brian Turner – has got something to say to Westpac. Brian sent this to us, giving a permission to post it up on our blog, hoping it will help others to write their own letters and make their voice heard. This is how it goes.

“Dear Mr Clare,

I’m one of New Zealand’s better-known award-winning writers. I am also a member of – so I am told – one of NZ’s most ‘famous sporting families’. What is meant by that is that I, and my brothers, all represented NZ at sport, and at three different sports: hockey, cricket and golf. We have stood up for NZ and stood out here.

I’ve three term deposits with you and have had for many many years. (I live near Ranfurly, in Otago, a small town in which you have a branch.) I’m seriously thinking of investing that money elsewhere. Why? Because coal mining in today’s world, at this time in history is dumb, irresponsible, irrational. Willful blindness and an obscene immorality drives the mining industry today. Please stop lending to those continuing with ecological destruction.

Australia and New Zealand are increasingly being seen as mulish, belligerent, and hypocritical. It would be wonderful to see us lead the way instead of following those driving us more rapidly towards the edge of cliffs.

At a time when we need to be phasing out coal and other fossil fuels you are supporting Bathurst. Continue to do that and you make a mockery of your claim that sustainability is at the heart of your culture.

Economically and ecologically investing in coal mining today is accelerating the speed of our societies’ race to the bottom. There are much better and necessary things to do with my and others’ money.

Yours sincerely (and hopefully),Brian Turner”