Petition Closed
Petitioning The Auditor General of New Zealand Lyn Provost
1 response

Audit Taranaki Regional Council's regulation of oil and gas activities

We have concerns with poor regulating and monitoring of drill sites, production stations, fracking operations and landfarms in the Taranaki region. This insufficient protection of the environment and community has placed families, workers, wildlife, stock and our farming and fishing economy at considerable risk both historically and now. We believe TRC has been derelict in their duties as regulators by not ensuring regular appropriate scientific testing and compliance with consents.

Letter to
The Auditor General of New Zealand Lyn Provost
I've just signed the following petition addressed to: The Auditor General of New Zealand.

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Audit Taranaki Regional Council's regulation of oil and gas activities

I am writing to your office to express my serious concern with the Taranaki Regional Council's consenting, compliance, and monitoring processes for oil and gas industries.

We have concerns with poor regulating of drill sites, production stations, frack operations and landfarms in the Taranaki region. The Taranaki Regional Council (TRC) monitoring reports for these sites have been reviewed by concerned community groups. Many of the reports show good to high levels of environmental performance and compliance in their executive summaries however in the body of the reports there is little or no research into treatment or safety methods, little or no consultation with iwi and affected parties, insufficient scientific testing conducted by TRC and the companies, significant breaching of consents and 'incidents' recorded with no consequences to discourage continuation of these activities. Decommission plans are often not called for when handing out consents potentially leaving the clean up to landowners and communities. Until mid 2011 TRC did not even request fracking or drilling operations to require resource consent despite the discharging of chemicals into the ground and possibly waterways. TRC still do not require resource consent for seismic surveying despite similar discharging of chemicals from that activity. Notification for submissions has been poor and often ignored. Communication with concerned members of the public by some senior TRC staff has including shouting, bullying and belittling.

This insufficient protection of the environment and community has placed families, workers, wildlife, stock and our farming and fishing economy at considerable risk both historically and now. We believe TRC has been derelict in their duties as regulators by not ensuring regular appropriate scientific testing and compliance with consents. There have been only a small number of prosecutions even when the companies have been found to be significantly breaching consent.

We urgently request an investigation of Taranaki Regional Council and their regulating of the oil and gas companies. We believe this is most appropriately placed with the Office of the Auditor-General.

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Sincerely,