24 Dec 2010

Plans to disrupt drilling boosted by tribunal report

1:00 pm on 24 December 2010

Environmental campaigners say plans for direct action against oil and gas prospectors have been given a boost by the Waitangi Tribunal's findings on the petroleum industry.

The tribunal found that laws to protect Maori interests from petroleum mining are failing and important sites are being damaged or destroyed.

It says oil and gas prospecting is on the rise, risking increasing levels of irrevocable harm.

Emily Bailey of Climate Justice Taranaki says some locals are outraged enough to act.

She says there are people who are considering blocking access roads or setting up occupation camps.

Ngaati Kahungunu territory between Wairarapa and Hawke's Bay is the most intensively explored area outside Taranaki.

The iwi says it wants not to be obstructive but to work alongside companies to protect ancestral and burial sites.