Apr 21, 2021


Maori News & Indigenous Views

Tauranga Moana Iwi RENA Response Unit Panui #21

4 min read

The Tauranga Moana Iwi Response Unit was especially set up by Iwi of Tauranga in response to the disaster and to help protect our ancestral waters, traditional food resources, culture and people from the impact of this disaster.

Contact details for the unit are 0800 AWHIME (0800 294463) and Email: [email protected]

TMIRU Update

Maritime NZ advise in their latest media release that salvage and container removal will continue throughout the holiday period, however oil response teams are on standby should the need come up. There will be core staff based at the incident command centre over the Christmas break monitoring the movement of the oil sheen around Rena and planning for any potential future releases of oil.

Salvors Svitzer have been directed by NOSC to reprioritise their work towards removing more of the Oil in the Ships cargo holds. The number 3 hold is responsible for most of the small leakages that happen on a daily basis. Removing the oil from Hold 3 is being examined at this time for the best possible solutions.

There are response personnel on standby to respond to public notifications of oil and should there be a major release of oil during this time, the wider response teams will be on standby if required.

Negotiations are continuing with Braemar Howells for container and debris recovery as reported in Panui 20. Please email [email protected] if you wish to register your interest and availability. The positions include 2 iwi coordinators, 5 site assessors, and general labour. This operation is specifically focused on the recovery of containers and debris that arrives onshore should it arise.

The team of the TMIRU have a rotating roster for the holiday season, along with other team members are on standby should the need arise. The next panui will be on the 13 January 2012.

On Thursday 22 December, the Rahui was reinstated mo te Moana a Toi by Iwi Leaders at their weekly hui held on Thursday at Classic Flyers Mount Maunganui. The Iwi Leaders will be reconvening their weekly hui in the new year.


Pia Bennett advised this morning that a beach groomer was deployed to Maketu today and contractors will still be deployed over the festive season (not including stat days). To give you an example of what is currently a daily occurrence, along with continual oil washup on the beaches, these photos are from Monday provided by Wiremu Smith, who assists the Planning and Scat teams (Shoreline and Coastal Assessment Team). They show the sandbank covered in oil covered debris, twigs and shells and a close up of the area with a peek at the oil in the sand and water.

Some informative facts for the months of October and November: over 800 volunteers were trained, fed and deployed from Whakauekaipapa Marae. There have been over 4,000 collective hours cleaning oil up, (this does not include the hours of volunteer coordinators and cooks) and over 3,500 bags of oil waste have been collected.

Matakana Island

Fulton Hogan contractors finished at Matakana on the 22 December for the festive season and will be returning in the new year. Over this time, the core team of Matakana Whanau – Chris Douglas, Hayden Murray, Kereama Ngatai and Baz Kuka will be monitoring the beach and organising island cleanup crews when required.


The hot water blasting and cold water flushing finishes up today due to the expected influx of foot traffic around Mauao for the holiday period, however continued monitoring will occur. There is still work to be done around the Shelley beaches with the worst areas being closed off to public. This work will recommence in the New Year.

Motiti Island

In an effort to reintroduce Motiti Wildlife back into their natural habitat, on Sunday 11th December, 16 Little Blue Penguins were released 300 metres offshore from Taumataika in the South West corner of Motiti.

On Sunday 18th December, 23 Little Blue Penguins were released North of Ponatauri Point. As the clean up continues and areas are signed off, there are 20 more to be released.

With the Christmas period upon us, to give the haukainga a well deserved break, volunteer deployment was suspended from Friday 16th December and will recommence on Monday 9th January 2012. If you are available from this date to deploy to Motiti, please contact the M?titi Island Volunteer coordinator, Sharon McLeod on (022) 129 9615


E nga mana, e nga reo, e nga karangaranga maha o te Moana a Tauranga
Kei te mihi atu ra ki a koutou katoa kua tatu mai nei i runga i te karanga o te kirihimete
Kua tau mai te wairua tapu i runga i a tatou katoa i tenei wa i te whanau mai o te karaiti
Na reira
Tenei he mihi aroha na te Tima a Rena ki a koutou mo te tautoko, te awhina hoki ki a matou e mahi ana ki te whakapai te taiao mo nga uri kei te haere mai
Tena koutou katoa

Want to help?

If you can create some spare time during the week and wish to assist in beach clean, please check the Bay of Plenty Regional Councils website for beach clean events. www.boprc.govt.nz

If you have recently been added to our mailing list, copies of the panui are available on the following websites: www.ngaiterangi.org.nz and www.ranginuiraupatu.maori.nz

Check out www.youtube.com/moanaatoi for our latest updates on video.

Check out our Facebook Page, Tauranga Moana Iwi RENA Response Unit for other updates, photos and relevant information.

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