The Green party wants to establish a commission of inquiry into the dispossession of land due to Treaty of Waitangi breaches as it believes land loss is at the crux of inequitable outcomes for Māori.

In a party policy announcement on Monday, the Green party's co-leader, Marama Davidson, said colonial land theft has caused severe disconnection for Māori.

“Returning land to tangata whenua is the right thing to do to begin to address these inequities,” she said.

Davidson said the disconnection has fed ongoing inequities for Māori within the health, education and justice systems.

According to the Greens, the inequity caused by land loss has caused intergenerational harm. The party doesn't want it to impact future generations as it says a quarter of all children in the country whakapapa Māori (have Māori lineage).

“The Aotearoa we know today has been built off Māori land, much of which was wrongly taken through breaches of Te Tiriti o Waitangi over the last 183 years.”

The Greens also plan to remove the 2008 deadline to lodge new Treaty claims. If elected, they will reinstate the Waitangi Tribunal's ability to make recommendations concerning privately owned land as it becomes available on the property market.

Davidson said the Greens will also reform the Public Works Act to prevent Māori land from being taken in future and provide a clear path for the return of land previously taken. 

“Our plan ends perpetual leases returning full control of the whenua back to Māori landowners."

The Greens project the cost of implementing the policy to be about $400 million.