HUNDREDS WELCOME FLOTILLA OPPOSED TO DRILLING (NZPA)

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Hundreds of people have welcomed a flotilla of yachts into Whangaparaoa Bay in the Bay of Plenty today, which are protesting deep sea oil drilling in the Raukumara Basin off the East Cape.

The five yachts were ceremonially welcomed by local iwi, te Whanau a Apanui, about 11am . The lead flotilla boats left Auckland last Sunday and have since been joined by boats from The Bay of Islands and Whitianga. One of the yacht’s skippers, Daniel Mares, said the message they had been given by supporters against the drilling was clear.

“The government has misguided this call and the people of New Zealand do not want or support deep sea drilling in our waters.” Iwi spokesman Dayle Takitimu said the response from the public had been “overwhelming”.

“For us, the organisations that have come on board legitimises that this is a national environmental issue. We’re committed to a long term campaign working collectively with like minded organisations.

“The deep sea oil drilling issue is a wave gathering strength that will crash on the shores of Wellington.” Greenpeace New Zealand climate campaigner Steve Abel said the group was unified in their opposition to the drilling.

“Deep sea oil drilling will not happen in New Zealand waters,” he said.

Many thanks to Tereza Greekz for this awesome panui

http://www.facebook.com/notes/teresa-greekz/hundreds-welcome-flotilla-opposed-to-drilling-nzpa-april-2-2011/176760629037633

2 COMMENTS

  1. Home > News > National > Protesters clash with deep sea oil ship
    Protesters clash with deep sea oil ship

    5/04/2011 11:00:01

    Protestors have had their first clash with a Brazilian deep sea oil vessel that's conducting seismic testing off the East Coast.

    Oil company Petrobas is into a three and half year programme in the Raukumara Basin to see if any oil or gas exists.

    A flotilla of 20 boats is protesting that they're against the deep sea drilling.

    Greenpeace spokesman Steve Abel says they aren't using any aggression.

    "The flotilla boat radioed to the captain of the Orient Explorer and called on them to cease all operations and leave the area," he told Newstalk ZB. "The captain acknowledged the call but continued to do the seismic testing."

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