17 Nov 2011

Tribe may take legal action over port harbour dredging

6:43 am on 17 November 2011

An iwi's planning to take further legal action if the Environment Court rules in favour of the Port of Tauranga pushing ahead with plans to deepen and widen the harbour channel.

Te Runanga o Ngai Te Rangi is against the project to allow access to bigger ships.

It says dredging would damage kaimoana and the cultural relationship with Mauao, or Mount Maunganui.

The manager of the tribe's Resource Management Unit Reon Tuanau says it will go to the High Court if it doesn't get the decision it wants.

He says if the port gets a 'yes' ruling with current consent and conditions it would be considered as a loss by the iwi.

Mr Tuanau says the next scenario would be that the Environment Court would deliver a 'no' to the consent in its entirety - which would be a victory for the tribe.

He says the third option would be a 'yes' ruling - but with stronger conditions applied to the consent.