There were to stories Yesterday ine from Wales and the other from the opposite end of the Wprld which are somewhat connected.
A New Zealand river revered by Maori has been recognised by parliament as a "legal person", in a move believed to be a world first.
Under legislation passed Wednesday that combines Western legal precedent with Maori mysticism, the Whanganui river has been formally declared a living entity.
"(It) will have its own legal identity with all the corresponding rights, duties and liabilities of a legal person," Attorney-General Chris Finlayson said.
"The approach of granting legal personality to a river is unique."
The river, known by Maori as Te Awa Tupua, is the third longest in New Zealand.
Finlayson said the local Maori iwi, or tribe, had been fighting to assert their rights over the river since the 1870s, in New Zealand's longest-running legal dispute.
"This legislation recognises the deep spiritual connection between the Whanganui iwi and its ancestral river," he said.
It deems the river a single living being "from the mountains to the sea, incorporating its tributaries and all its physical and metaphysical elements".
In practical terms, it means the river can be represented at legal proceedings with two lawyers protecting its interests, one from the iwi the other from the government.
The iwi also received an NZ$80 million ($56 million) settlement from the government after their marathon legal battle, as well as $30 million to improve the river's health.
So a Parliament largely composed of Non-Indigenous members recognized the ancient culture and belief of the Maori and acted accordingly.
"I do not see how any system of general consent or control for changes can be feasible or affordable."
"I struggle to see what the legislation that the member proposes will achieve beyond the actions that we are already taking," he said.Mr Skates's intervention prompted an angry response from Mr Lloyd, who told the minister that it was Plaid Cymru amendments to a previous assembly law that had "got you to the position of having the register that you have today".
"Although I cannot support this motion I believe the ground breaking measures that we are about to introduce are vital steps in appreciating and valuing this precious inheritance", he said, adding this was where "our energies and our resources should be directed".
"The fact is there is no statutory protection for our historic place names, be they of any language - English, Anglo Saxon, Viking, Latin, Old Welsh, New Welsh, Norse, Flemish, the rich smorgasbord of our history is going down the tube."
He added: "We're talking history of nation here. Pride in the history of that nation, pride that deserves to be enshrined in law."