The Rainbow Warrior continues its journey off the Taranaki coast today carrying crew from 11 nations and Taranaki kuia Kura Niwa from Pukerangiora Hapū and Agnes Wharehoka from Parihaka alongside Emily Bailey from Climate Justice Taranaki. The Greenpeace flagship made a surprise trip to Taranaki to show the world that despite a promise to ban new offshore exploration permits, much drilling is still to happen with over 30 new wells on the cards, and with toxic wastes going overboard. Read the rest of this entry »
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 »
“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.
Climate 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.
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
“In the last 42 days, the seismic survey ship ‘Amazon Warrior’ has been forced to stop 28 times according to reports from iwi marine mammal observers onboard because the ship has come too close to whales, dolphins or seals.” said Climate Justice Taranaki spokesperson Emily Bailey. “That’s threatened or endangered species in harm’s way every one and a half days in OMV and Schlumberger’s irresponsible pursuit of oil”.
Photo: The Amazon Warrior’s path of destruction, from Google Earth KMZ
“Climate Justice Taranaki fully supports the actions of Greenpeace protectors who locked on to the Amazon Warrior’s support ship yesterday in Port Taranaki. We have a proud history of civil disobedience by brave people who are willing to stand up for what’s right. Schlumberger and OMV should be ashamed of their backward operations at a time when our seas are dying and climate chaos has begun.”
“New research has proven seismic blasting kills off zooplankton and krill out to at least 1.2 kilometres from every hydrophone trailed behind the survey ships. These tiny animals underpin whole ocean productivity and are why the Southern Taranki Bight provides important feeding and nursery grounds or migration corridors for some 36 cetacean species including critically endangered Maui dolphins and endangered Blue Whales. It is part of one of the two most biodiverse areas in the world – and a hotspot for commercial and recreational fishers.”
“Together with the Cook Strait, the South Taranaki Bight is also an internationally recognised Important Bird Area, identified by Forest and Bird. Research on our ‘At risk-declining’ Little Blue Penguin has shown that some birds swam all the way from Marlborough to feed in the South Taranaki Bight. A new study on the breeding endangered African Penguin revealed a strong avoidance of their preferred foraging ground during seismic blasting, affecting their reproductive success.”
“The Iwi Chairs and Taranaki iwi and hapu came out in full against this seismic survey along with thousands of New Zealanders who don’t think the destruction of our planet is worth the price of oil. Some Taranaki iwi have also declared they want no more of this industry at all in their rohe and are demanding complete removal of all infrastructure.”
“While two other companies in the seismic industry have just gone bankrupt, Schlumberger has now declared it’s financially unviable to continue seismic surveying but they are to complete their current contracts. OMV nears the end of this survey, coming in close now to Taranaki’s coastal Marine Mammal Sanctuary. It’s time OMV, and next on the list: Todd, pull out of these contracts and do the right thing for the future of Taranaki and our planet.”
Climate Justice Taranaki
“The seismic survey monster boat ‘Amazon Warrior’ is not welcome in Taranaki waters” says Emily Bailey, spokesperson for the community group Climate Justice Taranaki.
The 125 metre long ship is currently on its way to Aotearoa, having left South Korea earlier in the month.
“The boat is returning to Aotearoa to conduct a 3D seismic survey for Schlumberger, a multinational oil and gas giant. While we probably won’t get to see the boat, it is of huge concern to our beaches, the marine life, all the whales and of course our climate. Scientists have just warned that the unprecedented ice melt in the Antarctic could be the tipping point, disrupting global and New Zealand climate. It is time the government step in and stop this madness of allowing profit-driven companies to continue causing havoc.”
“The offshore permit, still under evaluation, which covers over 18,000 square kilometres of ocean (that’s 2.5 times as big as the Taranaki region), is exactly where a blue whale feeding and nursing ground was discovered. Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage, recently confirmed that ‘one of the goals in the Green Party’s confidence and supply agreement with Labour was to look at establishing a Taranaki blue whale sanctuary.’ We challenge the new government to do just that and as a first step, stop this seismic survey ship and deny granting Schlumberger’s permit.”
“In order to create a just ecologically sustainable future, we all know we need to transition away from fossil fuels. The time for action on the frontlines of climate change is now” concludes Emily Bailey.
Graph source (left): Newshub in ‘Daunting’ Antarctic sea ice plummet could be tipping point
Graph source (right): Global Carbon Project in Bad News: Global carbon emissions have suddenly started risen again (New Scientist 13 Nov 2017)
Media coverage: Greenpeace issues warning to seismic survey ship (Radio NZ, 19 Nov 17)