Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Environment Commissioner condemns regulation of oil and gas

4 June 2014

Environment Commissioner condemns Govt’s regulation of oil and gas

New Zealand’s independent environmental watchdog has condemned the Government’s regulation of the oil and gas industry by calling it inadequate, the Green Party said today.

In her final fracking report released today, Environmental Commissioner Dr Jan Wright says:

“At the end of my interim report in 2012, I made a commitment to evaluating whether government oversight and regulation of oil and gas production in New Zealand is adequate for managing the environmental risks of the industry. Even without the potential for rapid growth, I have not found it to be adequate.” (p 6, emphasis added)

“I would not want this report to be interpreted as me giving a big tick to the expansion of oil and gas industry in New Zealand, because the biggest issue is not local environmental effect, but the global effect of climate change. From my perspective as Environment Commissioner, I would much rather see a bigger focus on ‘green growth’ in this country.” (p 8)

“New Zealand’s independent environmental watchdog has said today that the National Government’s regulation of the oil and gas industry is inadequate to protect the environment,” said Green Party energy spokesperson Gareth Hughes.

“This report makes a mockery of Energy Minister Simon Bridges claims that we have world class regulation of the oil and gas industry in New Zealand. The Environment Commissioner has concluded we don’t.

“This report vindicates the concerned residents of Taranaki who have worried about the wells being drilled and fracked next to their homes and schools.

“The Green Party is calling on the Government to take a safety-first approach and put a halt on fracking. Fracking is allowing the massive expansion of the oil and gas industry for which the rules and regulations are currently inadequate to protect people and the environment.

“The National Government claimed to be addressing the issue of inadequate oversight and regulation of fracking by publishing fracking guidelines earlier this year, but the Environment Commissioner has shown this to be greenwash.

“The Commissioner says that most councils are unprepared for the expansion of the oil and gas industry and says, ‘unfortunately, the Guidelines report published recently by the Ministry for the Environment does little to assist.’ (p 75).

“This report clearly shows that the Government’s petroleum agenda is putting the environment and communities at risk.

“The Government must urgently implement the Commissioner’s recommendations to improve regulations, but better yet, we can avoid all the risks of the oil and gas sector if we move to renewables and harness the power of the sun and wind,” said Mr Hughes.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Minister of Finance: Plan Shows $100 Billion Infrastructure Projects

Finance Minister Bill English has today launched the Government’s Ten Year Capital Intentions Plan (CIP) which shows a pipeline of $100.9 billion worth of infrastructure projects over the next decade. More>>


Werewolf: Safe Landings Gordon Campbell on the safety challenge to the Wellington runway extension.

The safety-related legal challenge revolves around the size of the 90 metre long Runway End Safety Area (RESA) being proposed for the runway extension. More>>


Environment Commissioner: We Need To Work Together On Climate Change And Farming

“The debate around agricultural emissions and the ETS has been polarised for too long,” said the Commissioner. “But the ETS is not the only way forward – there are other things that can be done.” More>>


NZ Super Fund: Seeking To Put A Market Price On Climate Change

Oct. 19 (BusinessDesk) - The New Zealand Superannuation Fund says it will devise a set of rules to assess investment winners and losers under climate change, a strategy that could rule out fossil fuels or producers such as current portfolio member Exxon ... More>>


Rejuvenation: Parata Will Not Contest 2017 Election

Education Minister and National List MP Hekia Parata has today announced that she will not be contesting the next election. She advised the Prime Minister of her decision earlier this year. More>>

Prisons Grow: Government Approves Plans For Increased Prison Capacity

Despite significant progress in reducing crime the number of prisoners has increased faster than projected. This is because the proportion of offenders charged with serious crimes has risen, meaning more people are being remanded in custody and serving more of their sentences in prison. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Plastic Bag Activism, And Street Harassment

Amusing to see the Act Party experiencing another outbreak of young fogey-ism. What has aroused the ire of Act Leader David Seymour this time is the introduction of a Greens private members bill to the ballot process, calling for a 15 cents levy on plastic bags to reduce pollution. More>>


Unclear Weapons: US Navy Ship Cleared To Visit NZ For Navy's 75th

United States Navy ship, the USS Sampson, has been given clearance to visit New Zealand next month by Prime Minister John Key... “The process for considering the visit by the USS Sampson is the same as that used for all ships attending the International Naval Review." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news