9 Jul 2014

Mining company appeals EPA decision

11:55 am on 9 July 2014

A mining company has filed an appeal in the Wellington High Court after being refused consent to mine ironsands off the coast of Taranaki.

Trans-Tasman Resources proposed to mine for iron ore in an area of seabed 22 kms off the coast of Patea, but was turned down by the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) on 18 June.

Trans Tasman Resources wants to mine iron sands off the coast of Taranaki.

Trans Tasman Resources wants to mine iron sands off the coast of Taranaki. Photo: PHOTO NZ

The application to the EPA was to mine 50 million tonnes of seabed material from the South Taranaki Bight.

The authority's decision-making committee says the rejection was based on uncertainty about the scope and significance of the potential environmental effects, and existing fishing and iwi interests.

A Trans-Tasman Resources (TTR) spokesperson says the appeal against the authority's decision to decline its marine consents for mining was filed on Tuesday - the deadline for an appeal.

The company's initial proposal drew 4800 submissions, with 99 percent opposed.

Disappointed but not surprised

Opponents of the TTR bid are disappointed, but not surprised that the company has lodged an appeal against the decision.

Chair of Kiwis Against Seabed Mining (KASM) Phil McCabe says the appeal is upsetting and ignores the will of the majority of New Zealanders.

"They were given a decision, it was a comprehensive decision (by) the people of New Zealand - 99 percent of submissions opposed their application.

"They're taking it a step further, they have a right to do that but we'll see how it plays out," Mr McCabe says.

A Trans-Tasman Resources spokesperson says as the appeal is now before the courts, no further comments will be made.