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Opposition at oil and gas conference


Around 25 people gathered outside the ENEX oil and gas conference in New Plymouth yesterday afternoon to show opposition to the massive expansion of petroleum exploration across Aotearoa/New Zealand.

“We are concerned about our kaimoana and whether our great-great-grandchildren will still be able to gather seafood” said Maata Wharehoka, kaitiaki of Te Niho o Te Ati Awa at Parihaka.

“We are against the mass expansion of petroleum exploration in our area because of the damages of oil spills, toxic drill wastes and climate change” said Climate Justice Taranaki spokesperson Emily Bailey.“We are tired of being locked out of the debate which is affecting our community and the planet in general via climate change. The council’s RMA process is a sham and no-one will tell us what chemicals they are putting in our water and on our farms. When we want to voice our concerns we're locked out of the RMA consent process and left standing in the rain with our children and kaumatua behind security cordons” said Emily.

“I am not convinced that our authorities and the companies using hydraulic fracturing (aka fracking) and deep well injection understand the true nature and scope of the aquifers in our region, to be able to tell us without a doubt that these extraction and waste disposal techniques definitely do not have the potential to contaminate our fresh water aquifers” said  Kaitake Community Board member Teresa Goodin.

“Fracking has now been banned in France, South Africa, Quebec and several US states. Yet, companies are currently fracking in Inglewood and Stratford! It’s time for a fracking ban in New Zealand” said Teresa.

“These are the thieves who are stealing our resources” said Poutama kaumatua Haumoana White.


  Kia Kaha, in solidarity.


Kia Kaha, in solidarity. When will clean tech be ushered in?When all is said and gone?Indeed these multi-nationals are thieves, they will make money from every little inch they can get, the selfish fools.

Indeed, the mere act of 'drilling' or other extraction method destroys with minimum or maximum impact the habitats of marine life which in turn affects the eco-system negatively by upsetting the balance.This exploitation is likened to drilling holes in Tangaroa's eyes. Tangaroa is now angry and so he puts forth climate change effects, that impact the people, the struggling people who want a sustainable future not a future run  by corrupt police state heads.The  whole exploitation is a shocking human rights abuse (in the long term as 'potential negative impacts on human health' are measureable now and can be reasonably forecasted in a future sense, if there is any future.

But Ake Ake Ake, now the true warriors will stand!Be strong true people of Aotearoa. The strength may not be so much in our  pockets but in our hearts.



The Environmental Defence Society expressed grave concerns of the road where the RMA is  going. I have studied it, and it IS a sham, and needs reforming to cover the EEZ. The EPA (environmental protection agency) covers the EEZ but you know who the EPA ultimately serves?Yep, thats right folks, national.So its down the bleak road we go until we can knock some heads off and be replaced with people who ****** care.

taranaki fraking freedom

kiaora tautoko te korero!! whenua motuhake o aotearoa ake tonu ake! enuf is enuf stop stealing our stuff!!! frak off an leave papatuanuku at peace... 

Rethinking the opposition

Kia kaha koutou.

I don't envy you folk being in the belly of the beast, but it is so important that you are there.

Scary to hear the calls for the whole industry and regulators to relocate to Taranaki too. Our Council staff are seeking advice from your Council on who (consultants) should do an independent peer review of our environmental protection policies - not advice I will have much confidence in - and our staff claim EDS who have offered to do a peer review for free can't be considered 'independent'!

Humans tend to repel negative messages and accept positive messages - so environmental activists, tangata whēnua and anyone else who cares enough need to develop compelling enough stories and messages to attract people to a sustainable vision for the country and the planet, rather than focusing on protest and opposition to the short-term (minimal) financial gain, medium-term (energy cost) pain, long-term (human & species) extinction fossil fuel based policies of successive governments... see, I've already slipped back into unhelpful ways of framing the situation!

We have not won over the majority of citizens on this issue (mostly I suspect because it is seen as a 'Māori' and 'environmentalist' protest issue rather than about what is in the national economic, social environmental and cultural best interests - and planetary interests). If/when Forest & Bird, WWF, the fishing industry, tourism sector, etc. get on board then it will have some currency with the majority of the public and the government will change their position by lunchtime.

Parihaka provides one model for resistance - build the alternative community and make it work, then engage in non-violent resistance - while the people and Pā of Parihaka got trashed, the tactics they used have been very successful in other times and places.

Shifting the thinking, aspirations and priorities of the public and then the politicians isn't going to happen through protest - though this is what gets most media attention and while it can be a good way to crystalise the issues under contention, media attention often distracts from those issues and focuses on the action itself and the issues are sidelined.

I think the anti-extraction movement really need to: (a) get a robust national campaign plan in place; (b) focus on building a strong support base across the country and internationally (with our own 'experts'); and (c) secure some decent finances from independent sources to resource for the information war. I think we can win but we're not organised enough at present - and I appreciate the call Climate Justice Taranaki put out to get people to the region while the conference was on to spend some time planning and sorry we couldn't make it from Te Tairāwhiti. I hope some good strategising did happen and we can find a secure way to do it remotely and other opportunities to come together in the near future.

Anyway, I'm sure I'm not saying anything new here and hope we can find ways to be more effective in the near future as the situation is so urgent.


Good comments all round.I

Good comments all round.I think there will always be a need for direct action but a strategy plan does need to be put in place that makes it efficient to communicate to the wider community, and talks in schools could take place on why we need to replace extraction industries with clean tech industry, reasons are:

1.Human and marine life health in short/long term are threatened and destroyed

2.Oil's contribution to climate change and corrupt industries, e.g defence.

3. Oil exploration is leaving no room for clean tech replacement so stressing of the limited capabilities to develop clean tech industries within legislation/statutes needs to be resolved...hence RMA reform NOW!

.All anti-drilling groups need to come under one umbrella that include RMA specialists, scientists etc etc.

Yes I think recruiting some

Yes I think recruiting some more scientists, RMA specialists and also people like Prof. Frank Alcock who have read the full investigation commission reports into the Deepwater Horizon disaster and can vouch for how little the industry has in fact learnt and how little the politicians have done in the US let alone NZ to prevent a similar event happening again.

cleantech, RMA and EEZ

Kia ora koutou mo to koutou tautoko me nga marama.

Three issues were raised in comments that I want to respond to.

Firstly cleantech is not what it may seem, despite Greenpeace pushing it, but then it is a new thing that we're only just starting to understand. From what I can see though it looks like many other corrupted green solutions like the oxymoronic and hypothetical 'clean coal', like some brands of 'recycled paper' which are infact made from sawdust at the mill instead of post-consumer waste, or like 'responsible care' chemical companies that include DOW, Bhopal, Bayer, Methanex - some of the worst chemical polluters around. A man at ENEX assured us that nuclear power created "no pollution, no pollution". I don't think we need new technology, we have the answers right infront of us: reduce energy consumption and then use solar, wind, micro-hydro, wave power, methane from waste etc.

As for the RMA, it needs a complete overhaul. Here, a company pays $500 for its non-notified consent, it does it's own monitoring of a set list of chemicals (any others are not tested for) which can be discharged anywhere they please, it publishes an annual report where chemical load limits were exceeded, the regional council gives it an excellent rating anyway and says next year's reporting requirements can be reduced. You put in a submission to complain and the council says "thank-you" but "we will make no changes". It's a joke. Maori cannot even properly protect waahi tapu as they must first be registered which requires proving to the council that they are real and then the council defines the boundaries of the waahi tapu for us. Onland seismic surveying does not even need a consent despite drilling (with drill chemicals) into shallow aquifers, next to streams, in farm paddocks and in peoples' backyards.

Now the EEZ, I think that's the territory 12-200km offshore. Well first of all that territory is not owned by the crown. They have no jurisdiction over it except by might. Tangata whenua have not ceded this territory or sold it to the crown so it is not the crown's. Yes it would be good to have some environmental protection agency to be kaitiaki but the definitely not people like ex-Wellington mayor 'Scary Prenderghastly' who bulldozed new roads through vibrant, century old communities. Argh.

I know that's a lot of negative. The solutions are not easy. I think we need major overhauls of our councils and policy and it takes time - time we do not have much of. In the meantime we should also try and stop whatever pollution we can. Protest and direct action while garnering attention to the issue (if not led astray) also create unstable, undesirable markets for company shareholders. Little by little ethical financing is growing, partly because of its stable, longterm market and because some financers want to look good or... actually care. During the recession of 2009-ish, when many of the current permits were given out, shareholders could not be found and so exploration was put on hold... until now with the improved market. If you look at the permits though a number of them are due to expire this year.

That's my opinion on things at the moment at least.

[I don't think we should discuss things too much on the internet btw as some things are best kept private until they're ready]

oil and gas exploration

Kia Ora e hoa - you are all my friends, my kind of people.

Excellent comments all round.

Kia Kaha all. Together, the people in the fight for human and environmental and other rights, will succeed.