Beaches in Wellington, Wairarapa, and the top of the South Island are at less risk of being decimated by an oil spill after Anadarko surrendered its fossil fuel exploration permits in the Pegasus Basin, the Green Party said today.
“As we head into summer, people can celebrate that the chance of an oil spill on their favourite beach just got much lower,” Green Party energy and resources spokesperson Gareth Hughes said.
“Our beautiful beaches are an iconic part of the great Kiwi summer and it’d be a tragedy to see them ruined by an oil spill disaster.
“This is a big win for everyone who campaigned against deep-sea oil drilling off Wellington’s south coast.
“The Green Party recently revealed that less than half of all councils are adequately prepared for an oil spill off their coastlines.
“Anadarko joins a long list of companies that have given up on oil exploration in New Zealand waters, including Statoil’s decision to surrender its Northland permits in October, and Petrobras, which gave up in 2012.
“This is yet another example of National’s failed fossil fuel strategy. We should be pursuing economic opportunities in the clean energy industry instead.
“Globally, clean energy is a fast-growing source of jobs and export opportunities with huge economic potential, and New Zealand should be positioning itself to get a piece of that action,” Mr Hughes said.
Anadarko’s two permits in the Pegasus Basin off the southern Wellington and Wairarapa coasts were granted in the December 2012 Block Offer and covered 7,085 square km.