MEDIA RELEASE: Taranaki climate defenders challenge oil companies at sea

02/10/2018

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.

After visiting the Kupe rig yesterday, the ship arrived at the Maui A and B platforms this morning to deliver a message to the major drilling company OMV from Austria. “Kua nui, haere atu. Leave our waters and our lands and never come back” said Emily Bailey.

The crew on the Greenpeace flagship came up close to Kupe and the Maui oil and gas rigs now mostly owned by OMV. They raised banners and phoned the rig and their OMV headquarters in Austria to inform the company that the whole world is watching their crimes against humanity.

“We have come here today on behalf of our tamariki and mokopuna and the hundreds of thousands of have spoken to leave fossil fuels in the ground” said Kura Niwa. Read the rest of this entry »

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MEDIA RELEASE: Rainbow Warrior en route to Taranaki oil and gas rigs

01/10/2018

Climate Justice Taranaki has added a member of their team to the Greenpeace Rainbow Warrior crew this week as they head around Taranaki to take a closer look at the oil and gas rigs offshore. Emily Bailey is joined by two Taranaki kuia: Agnes Wharehoka from Parihaka and Kura Niwa from Pukerangiora Hapū.

CJT member Emily Bailey says: “This is a great opportunity for us to join forces to send a clear message to environmental vandals out there that oil and gas drilling is not wanted any more in Taranaki. Given the global epidemic of forest fires, floods, hurricanes, typhoons, landslides and other extreme weather events, there is no question any longer that climate change has started and the only way to prevent catastrophic climate change is to leave remaining fossil fuel reserves in the ground.”

There are half a dozen installations offshore from Taranaki, actively drilling and producing oil and gas for a multitude of multinational companies. With Shell’s recent asset sell-off, Austrian-based OMV now owns the three largest producing oil and gas fields offshore – Maari, Pohokura and Maui.

“To add insult to injury, OMV has aggressive exploratory drilling plans across five other licensed areas in the Taranaki Basin while Malaysian-based Tamarind Resources plans to side-track drill from old wells in the Tui oil field. They are putting their heads in the sand, ignoring the escalating risks of mega storms on their aging infrastructure and the diminishing economic return as the world finally turns towards a low-carbon future. Meanwhile, onshore drilling, fracking and deepwell injection of wastes are also ramping up, notably with Todd Energy getting ready to drill 12 gas wells at the brand-new Mangahewa-G wellsite near Tikorangi. All these have got to stop if we are to have a liveable climate.” concluded Bailey.

The Rainbow Warrior is heading around the Taranaki Coast for a few days to tell the drilling companies that they are not welcome here and show the world what’s really going on in Aotearoa.

Medienmitteilung auf Deutsch – read more.

Read the rest of this entry »


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.


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 »


Press Release: Ocean Killers: OMV, Schlumberger, Amazon Warrior

01/02/2018

“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”.

amazonwarrior 01-24-18 at 09.52 AM

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.”

 

Sources:
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2017-06/uot–nrr062217.php
https://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/71327531/marlboroughs-amazing-little-blue-penguins
http://www.forestandbird.org.nz/important-bird-areas
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/03014223.2017.1302970?journalCode=tnzz20
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-017-16569-x


Climate Justice Taranaki

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