“The minimal uptake of the national government’s petroleum block offer reflects not only the low global oil prices but growing public resistance, and signals the beginning of the end to extreme oil” says Catherine Cheung, member of Climate Justice Taranaki (CJT).
The nine new permits granted are all located in Taranaki or the offshore Taranaki Basin. (Map from NZPAM website)
“The three onshore permits, one of which border onto Egmont National Park, were granted to Petrochem, a subsidiary of Greymouth Petroleum. Greymouth has previously breached its resource consents and is currently in court against Heritage NZ and Otaraua hapu, for wanting to drill at the grave site of paramount chief Wiremu Kingi Te Rangitaake” says CJT member Emily Bailey.
“The six offshore permits for OMV, Todd Energy and Mont D’Or Resources, along with the many other existing oil and gas operations, threaten our coastal and offshore habitats with spills and pollution, and could sound the death knell for many threatened marine mammals and seabirds that forage and traverse the area.
It shouldn’t surprise anyone that New Zealand was awarded a ‘Fossil of the Day Award‘ at the COP21 summit in Paris. Committing to fighting climate change and opening more and more of the country to oil and gas exploration is a truly massive display of hypocrisy” says Cheung.
“It is critical that communities on all fronts unite to fight for climate justice now. This demands an urgent energy transformation, a just transition for workers and a revolutionary change of the current economic system to ensure justice for all, including future generations” concludes Cheung.
Media coverage: Exploration permits seen as threat to climate (Waatea News, 17 Dec 2015)
Govt awards new oil permits straight after COP21 (NZ Herald 17 Dec)