Press release: Big Taranaki climate polluters to be named and shamed

03/09/2018

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Despite the government’s recent announcement for no new offshore petroleum permits, existing permit holders continue to drill on and offshore, and new permits may be issued onshore in Taranaki.  Climate Justice Taranaki spokesperson Emily Bailey says “Enough is enough. We are now launching a new campaign to out these big companies who are profiting from wrecking our planet and putting our children’s very future at risk.” First to be protested will be Austrian company OMV on 4-5th September in New Plymouth.

Megabucks Austrian oil and gas company OMV will be at New Plymouth’s Quality Hotel arguing their case to the Environmental Protection Authority for a  discharge consent associated with their plan to drill 12 exploratory/appraisal wells in six licensed areas off Taranaki over the next six years.

OMV is seeking a consent for discharge of trace amounts of harmful substances from the deck drains of the mobile drilling unit/s which is a notifiable activity. The exploratory drilling itself and the larger quantities of toxic discharges such as drill fluid or production water are not publicly notified. Exploratory drilling is the most risky stage – remember that the Deepwater Horizon catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico was exploratory,” says CJT researcher Catherine Cheung.

The law is wrong – it is cutting the public out and smoothing everything for the fossil fuel companies. The EPA process we get to be involved in is pointless other than to show that the public is involved, never mind how little. It is a rubber stamping process,” she added.

Climate change is the most pressing issue that is threatening the very existence of all species on this planet, including our own. These companies need to be named and shamed for what they are doing. People don’t need more oil and gas, we need a livable planet. Their profit is our exploitation. They have no social license,” said Bailey.

We’re tired of arguing over drilling consents and permits, the big issues are climate change and unsustainable resource use. This country’s current laws are not designed to stop climate polluters and we’re running out of time. Let’s take the issue to the public and let the generations who are suffering now, decide whether it’s ok for these companies to hold their future to ransom,” concluded Bailey.

The group plans to protest a different climate polluter every week or so in Taranaki. The public are welcome to join the group’s actions that are advertised on facebook and on our website www.ClimateJusticeTaranaki.info.

Media coverage:

Dilution no solution to pollution, Taranaki Daily News 4 Sept 18

Gas company seeks to discharge chemicals at sea, Radio NZ 4 Sept 18

OMV tells EPA that many environmental claims are ‘not legally relevant’ in oil and gas hearing, Taranaki Daily News 5 Sept 18

Context in oil & gas fight, L DeVantier letter to editor, TDN 7 Sept 18

Hearing statements:

You can download and read our hearing statements here.

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Press release: OMV plans to drill 12 offshore wells non-notified

02/07/2018

OMV drilling map in discharge consent IA 2018

Climate Justice Taranaki wants the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) to hold public hearings on OMV’s exploratory drilling consent application and jointly process it with all related applications. Read the rest of this entry »


99% chance of oil over Marine Mammal Sanctuary if there’s a well blow-out

14/06/2018

Collage Tui Spill Time AnnexF MM sanctuary IA102

Both the South Taranaki shoreline and Marine Mammal Sanctuary had a 99% probability of being exposed to visible floating oil…” according to Tamarind’s modelling of a hypothetical 45-day subsea release of 356,780 bbl of Tui Crude, following a loss of well control at the Amokura-2H well over February to May.

Although Tamarind considers a major incident to be ‘unlikely’ or ‘extremely unlikely’, the consequence on the marine environment would be devastating if it happens. No marine sanctuary could protect our critically endangered Maui’s dolphin, Blue whale (now found to be genetically distinct), Sperm whale and other marine creatures from an oil spill.

Please spare a minute and tell EPA if you don’t want Tamarind to drill more oil wells and discharge harmful substances off the Taranaki coast. Here’s an on-line submission form we’ve prepared to help you do that, or you can go directly to EPA website. Submissions close on Monday 18 June 2018.

With increasing climate disruptions, aging infrastructure and the intensification of activities: more drilling, seismic surveys, fishing, maritime transport, potential seabed mining and other industries in and around the area, the likelihood of accidents and the resulting harm will escalate and become increasingly unmanageable.

Human activities globally have caused rapid changes in sea temperatures and ocean chemistry with cascading effects on foodwebs. Parts of the Tasman Sea have experienced extremely elevated sea temperatures over the past three summers, threatening marine foodwebs and fisheries.

Society’s addiction on fossil fuels for energy, transport, agriculture and luxury goods is risking our own life-support system.

Graphics from Tamarind Impact Assessment Annex F. Oil Spill Modeeling

Here’s CJT’s submission to EPA.

 

 

 


Media release: Climate Justice Taranaki questions the cause of Sperm Whale Death

28/05/2018

sperm whale Andy Jackson 28May18 stuff AW track mineral permits collageClimate Justice Taranaki calls for a full investigation on the possible causes of injury and death of the 12 sperm whale discovered along Kaupokonui Beach, South Taranaki, last weekend.

It is extremely upsetting whenever whale stranding and death occurs. We know it is very difficult to determine the causes of mass whale stranding and often there is no definitive answer. But with the increasing human activities in our oceans, we must ask the hard questions of whether we have caused or contributed to their demise. The Tasman Sea has been exceptionally hot this past summer, in places more than six degrees Celsius above normal, with cascading impacts on food webs.

There is also ample research that demonstrates direct and indirect harm on marine mammals from seismic testing. Here, we had the world’s largest seismic testing ship, the Amazon Warrior, blasting off Taranaki from north of Mokau to Whanganui for three months, till around the end of March. Could the seismic blasting have injured the whales, displaced them from their feeding grounds or weakened them by added stress?” Dr Lyndon DeVantier, member of Climate Justice Taranaki.

The whales’ bodies were reportedly too decomposed for necropsies, indicating that they likely died at sea en masse. We want a detailed investigation on the possible causes of the tragic death of the whales.

With the government’s recent decision of allowing existing petroleum exploration and mining permits to continue, there will be increased impacts on marine species and ecosystems from seismic blasting and drilling for oil and gas. The Malaysian based Tamarind Taranaki Ltd has already applied for permits to drill new side track wells at the Tui oil field and discharge harmful substances at sea. We encourage everyone who
cares about our marine environment and climate to submit to the EPA in opposition to Tamarind’s applications,” said Catherine Cheung, member of Climate Justice Taranaki.

Graphics: Photo of dead sperm whales at Kaupokonui Beach by Andy Jackson / Stuff 27May2018; Track of Amazon Warrior as of 24Jan2018; Mineral mining permits from NZPAM website.

Media coverage:

Whale stranding unites Taranaki hapu, Maori TV 28 May 2018

Climate Justice whale stranding story, Maori TV 29 May 2018

Harsh conditions for workers as another dead whale washes up, Taranaki Daily News 28 May 2018

‘Extremely unlikely’ seismic surveying linked to death of 12 sperm whales, Stuff national 29 May 2018


MEDIA RELEASE: Further oil and gas drilling in Taranaki – disappointing

12/04/2018

MEDIA RELEASE: Further oil and gas drilling in Taranaki – disappointing
DATE: 12th April 2018 – for immediate release

“Climate Justice Taranaki welcomes central government’s decision to issue no more offshore oil and gas exploration licenses. Finally, the government have listened to iwi, hapū and communities from across Aotearoa in not releasing any new offshore permits for oil and gas drilling. However, we are also deeply disappointed that it is considering releasing 1,703 square kilometres of land for new onshore drilling here in Taranaki. We all know that fossil fuels need to stay in the ground – offshore and onshore!” says Urs Signer, a member of Climate Justice Taranaki.

“The government says it will consult with hapū and iwi to identify areas of sensitivity or significance that the Minister needs to be aware of. However, a potential 23% of onshore Taranaki land could be available to companies wanting to drill, which will further contribute to the climate crisis and destroy the local environment.”

“Companies have been drilling for oil and gas in Taranaki since the 1860s and fracking since the early 1990s. They discharge toxic drilling waste back into old wells or spread it onto paddocks in so-called landfarms. Communities living around wellsites bear the brunt of noise and traffic impacts. The local councils are allying themselves with the industry to resist the basic safeguards for human health and safety. It is real sad to see the central government continuing to sacrifice Taranaki for political trade off.”

“The government can’t pretend to be proactive on climate change while at the same time enabling further drilling in Taranaki. The time for action on climate change was yesterday. Let’s get together in our communities, hapū and iwi and keep pushing the government and build our collective capacity to oppose further drilling and develop a truly sustainable and just economy” concludes Urs Signer.

Map source: NZPAM website, 12 April 2018

Media coverage:

Govt tells oil industry: ‘The world is changing’, Radio NZ 13 April 2018

No new offshore oil and gas exploration, Otago Daily Times 13 April 2018


MEDIA RELEASE: Taranaki people headed for Petroleum Conference blockade

22/03/2018

“Taranaki people, residents and whānau with concerns for our global climate are travelling to Wellington next week to participate in the Rally for Climate Justice and the blockade of the annual Petroleum Conference” says Urs Signer, member of Climate Justice Taranaki.

“Last year, 200 people successfully blockaded and delayed the Petroleum
Conference for several hours when it was held in New Plymouth. Since
then, opposition to further fossil fuel extraction has grown hugely
across Aotearoa. We all know that coal, oil and gas needs to stay in the
ground to avoid catastrophic climate change.”

PM Jacinda Ardern has asked for more time to figure out what to do with
the oil and gas exploration block offers. It really isn’t that
difficult. If this is our nuclear free moment, then an end to fossil
fuel extraction is the only path forward.”

“To create a socially just and ecologically sustainable society is not
an easy task but the time for waiting is well and truly over. It’s time
for community action: together we will shut down the Petroleum
Conference; together we will bring an end to the fossil fuel extracting
industry; together we will ensure that the earth we are borrowing from
future generations has an intact climate and strong and healthy
communities” concludes Urs Signer.

More information about the Rally for Climate Justice and blockade can be
found here https://www.rallyforclimatejustice.nz/

Media coverage: Petroleum protester plan to attend the country’s biggest oil and gas conference in Wellington, TDN 22 March 2018

Anti-oil protest heads to NZ Petroleum Conference, Te Karere TVNZ, 26 March 2018

Protests at the New Zealand Petroleum Conference, RNZ, 26 March 2018


Press release: Climate Justice Taranaki vindicated by the Advertising Standard Authority

08/03/2018

Three months after Climate Justice Taranaki (CJT) filed its complaint on the Petroleum Exploration and Production Association (PEPANZ)’s seismic survey website, the Advertising Standard Authority (ASA) announced its Decision today. Read the rest of this entry »