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

 


Govt opens Maui’s dolphin habitat for petroleum exploration

17 June 2014

Govt opening up Maui’s dolphin habitat for petroleum exploration

The situation for New Zealand’s highly endangered Maui’s dolphin is dire, and the Government is making it worse by opening up more of their habitat to petroleum exploration and drilling, the Green Party said today.

The Green Party obtained documents under the Official Information Act which reveal that the Government included over 3,000 km2 of the West Coast North Island Marine Mammal Sanctuary in the competitive tender for petroleum exploration permits, known as Block Offer 2014. The West Coast North Island Marine Mammal Sanctuary was established in 2008 as a part of the Hector’s and Maui’s dolphin Threat Management Plan.

“The International Whaling Commission is calling for even greater protections for Maui’s dolphins, this National Government is putting these beautiful dolphins at greater risk of extinction,” said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman.

Just last week the International Whaling Commission (IWC) published a report that concludes that Nationals’ piecemeal management changes are inadequate to stop Maui’s extinction saying, “current management situation falls short of that required to reverse the Maui’s decline.”

“Maui’s dolphins – the world’s most endangered dolphin – are only found in New Zealand, and this National Government is driving them to extinction,” said Dr Norman.

“If National was serious about protecting Maui’s dolphins it wouldn’t allow more oil exploration in the part of the ocean where they live.

“The Government should stop putting the short-term interest of a few mining companies ahead of the thousands and thousands of New Zealanders who love and want to protect the endangered Maui’s dolphin.

“Expert scientists say that seismic surveys, which are part of petroleum exploration, can harm dolphins’ hearing and may push them into unprotected areas where they are more exposed to fishing nets.

“Furthermore, exploratory drilling is the riskiest phase of oil production and an oil spill could wipe out the last 55 Maui’s left.

“Now the biggest threat to Maui’s dolphins is inaction by the National Government,” Dr Norman said.

The Green Party in Government would protect the Maui’s dolphin by:
• Making the West Coast North Island Marine Mammal Sanctuary a proper sanctuary by putting a stop to petroleum exploration and dolphin-lethal fishing methods within its boundaries;
• Working with the fishing industry to transition away from unsustainable indiscriminate fishing methods; and
• Progressively extending protection wherever Maui’s dolphins swim, in line with recommendations from the IWC.

References:
Official Information Act request showing over 3,000km2 of offshore conservation area is in Block Offer 2014: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/51684516/03062014172559-0001.pdf

Map showing overlap:
https://www.greens.org.nz/sites/default/files/2014_block_offer_and_marine_protected_area_overlap_closeup_5.pdf

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Human Rights Commission: Urgent Need For Action On Seclusion And Restraint

A new independent report has outlined a number of serious concerns about New Zealand’s seclusion and restraint practices, says the Human Rights Commission...

Chief Human Rights Commissioner David Rutherford says that while the report makes for sobering reading, the focus should now be on how the recommendations can be used to reduce the occurrence of seclusion and restraint in New Zealand and, in circumstances where it is necessary, to improve practices. More>>

 

$11bn Capital Spend, New Debt Target: Steven Joyce On Budget Priorities

First, delivering better public services for a growing country – providing all New Zealanders with the opportunity to lead successful independent lives... And finally, we remain committed to reducing the tax burden and in particular the impact of marginal tax rates on lower and middle income earners, when we have the room to do so. More>>

ALSO:

JustSpeak Report: Bail Changes To Blame For New Billion Dollar Prison

In 2013 criminal justice spending was falling and the Government was mulling over what to spend the money on. 3 years later there are 10,000 people in prison and a new billion dollar prison is announced. More>>

ALSO:

Asylum: Dunne Accepts Hundreds Of Postcards On Refugee Categories

Minister Peter Dunne today accepted over 800 postcards calling for convention refugees to have the same entitlements as quota refugees... The campaign has been run with ActionStation together with LUSH Cosmetics, with postcards being signed in stores around New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:

Reshuffle: PM Announces Changes To Ministerial Portfolios

Prime Minister Bill English today announced the appointment of Gerry Brownlee as Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nathan Guy as Minister of Civil Defence, Nikki Kaye as Minister of Education and Mark Mitchell as Minister of Defence. More>>

ALSO:

Q+A Transcript: CTU Call For 'National Standards' On Wages

‘If you look at countries who do better than us, who pay wages better, who have more competitive industries, more successful economies, they have systems where there are national standards.’ More>>

ALSO:

Energy: Greens Launch Plan For Cheaper And Cleaner Electricity

$112 million for winter warm-up payments to help low-income households cover their power bills • setting a goal for 100 percent renewable electricity by 2030 (in average hydrological conditions) • an investigation into the electricity wholesale market. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news