Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Deep-sea exploration consents won’t require public hearings

Govt confirms deep-sea exploration consents won’t require public hearings

By Pattrick Smellie

Feb 27 (BusinessDesk) – Deep-sea oil exploration resource consent applications won’t require public hearings, but will not be automatically ticked through, Environment Minister Amy Adams has announced.

The decision over-rides the objections of environmental groups, who wanted all deep-sea drilling to be notified for public input, but which offshore drillers say would add time and complexity that could stifle a low-risk activity.

However, exploration applications will be treated as “discretionary” rather than “permitted” activities.

Oil and gas explorers seeking to drill production wells would be required to seek resource consents from the Environmental Protection Authority under the new regulations governing the Exclusive Economic Zone, since they would be long-lasting installations and carry higher risks of environmental impact.

“The non-notified discretionary classification is the pragmatic option for exploratory drilling, and will provide a level of regulation proportionate to its effects,” Adams said in a statement. “The classification will provide effective oversight and environmental safeguards without burdening industry with excessive costs and timeframes.”

As a distant location with relatively small amounts of offshore oil and gas exploration, explorers must book their high-cost drilling rigs in available “windows” of time, which could easily be disrupted by the potential unpredictability of consenting processes.

Exploratory drilling generally lasts only a matter of weeks.

“The EPA will fully assess the effects of the activity on the environment and existing interests,” said Adams. “If a marine consent is granted, the EPA can impose such conditions as it thinks necessary to properly manage any adverse effects of the activity.

“Obtaining a marine consent to drill an exploratory well does not give the consent holder the right to begin producing oil or gas.”

The decision follows a seven-week consultation period, with the new regulations in effect from Feb 28.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Price Of Cheese: Dairy Product Prices Fall To The Lowest This Year

Dairy product prices fell in the latest GlobalDairyTrade auction, hitting the lowest level in the 2015 auctions so far, as prices for milk powder and butter slid amid concern about the outlook for commodities. More>>

ALSO:

Houston, We Have An Air Route: Air New Zealand To Fly Direct To The Heart Of Texas

Air New Zealand will fly its completely refitted Boeing 777-200 aircraft between Auckland and Houston up to five times a week opening up the state of Texas as well as popular nearby tourist states such as Louisiana and Florida. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Reserve Bank’s Spencer Calls On Govt To Rethink Housing Tax

The Reserve Bank has urged the government to take another look at a capital gains tax on investment in housing, allow increased high-density development and cut red tape for planning consents to address an over-heated Auckland property market. More>>

ALSO:

The Nation: Call For Cross-Party Auckland Housing Plan

Penny Hulse calls for cross-party accord on Auckland housing because “it’s too important to score political points on”. More>>

ALSO:

Flu Season: Overcoming Vaccination Reluctance

While research shows that 40% of New Zealand businesses offer free or subsidised flu vaccinations to employees this time of year, HR professionals say persuading staff to participate is the biggest challenge. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news