01 September 2017

TE OHU KAIMOANA FILE APPEAL AGAINST EPA DECISION TO ALLOW MINING OF SOUTH TARANAKI
IRON-SANDS

Te Ohu Kaimoana has filed an appeal against the Environmental Protection Authority’s decision to grant Trans-Tasman Resources Limited consents to mine iron sand off the South Taranaki Bight.

The decision to allow mining was announced earlier this month. It would allow Trans-Tasman Resources Limited to export five million tonnes of iron sand every year for 35 years. Achieving this requires 50 million tonnes of seabed material to be disturbed annually, causing sediment plumes.

Te Ohu Kaimoana Chief Executive Dion Tuuta said that filing an appeal at the High Court supports local iwi concerns and the concerns of iwi nationally where similar operations are already proposed.

“Seabed mining is an unproven industry and a significant risk to our sustainably managed fisheries. This is but the first successful application of what could become a widespread industry and it is vital that the decision is set aside to protect our marine environment."

More than 13,700 submissions were received by the EPA, the majority of which opposed the application.

The final decision, released by the EPA on August 10, revealed a 2:2 split between the four members of its decision-making committee, with chairman Alick Shaw providing the casting vote to approve the application.

An earlier application by the company in 2014 was declined.

The current application covers an area of 66 square kilometres between 22km and 36km off the west coast of South Taranaki within New Zealand's exclusive economic zone.

ENDS

For more information, contact:
Verona-Meiana Putaranui
Te Ohu Kaimoana Communications Manager
027 499 5850