The Maori Party says the Climate Change Iwi Leadership Group has some housekeeping to do, to preserve its relationship with the Government.
Climate Change Issues Minister Tim Groser wrote to iwi leader Dr Apirana Mahuika, saying he was unhappy about the group's public criticism of the Government's climate change policy.
The iwi leaders' adviser, Chris Karamea-Insley, criticised New Zealand's approach at the United Nations Climate Summit in Peru last week.
Maori Party co-leader Marama Fox said the same protocols should apply as those agreed to by the Maori and National parties: they can disagree, but must ensure there are no surprises.
She said there was always a place for an independent Maori voice, but Mr Groser was obviously taken aback by the comments.
Ms Fox said Mr Groser clearly wanted to work with iwi in the future, but work was needed on the relationship.