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Govt’s deep sea drilling plans in tatters

4 December 2012

Govt’s deep sea drilling plans in tatters

The Green Party welcomed news that Petrobras has abandoned its plans to conduct risky deep sea oil drilling in New Zealand and says it shows the Government's plans for deep sea drilling are collapsing.

"The Government's deep sea drilling plans have so far failed, and it's just as well. Petroleum development, including deep sea drilling, is the wrong focus for our economy, said Green Party energy spokesperson Gareth Hughes.

News that Brazilian oil giant Petrobras is surrendering its permit to conduct exploratory deep sea drilling in the Raukumara Basin follows news earlier this year that American company Anadarko would not be conducting its planned deep sea drilling off the coast of Taranaki this summer.

“Petrobras’ risky plans attracted massive public opposition; the Government does not have a public mandate to continue to expand this dangerous industry,” said Mr Hughes.

“The Government has chosen to pick the petroleum industry as a winner, but in reality it is jobs poor and environmentally risky.

“To make sure that New Zealanders have good jobs, the Government should focus on retaining manufacturing jobs in New Zealand and growing the clean-tech sector.

“The Pure Advantage report released just two weeks ago identified that we have a global niche in the development of sustainable geothermal energy.

"We can create a smart, green economy by moving away from risky extractive activities like deep sea oil drilling, and towards renewable energy and clean-tech jobs,” said Mr Hughes.

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