“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
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