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Posts Tagged ‘HMNZS Pukaki’

Navy Vessel Used Against Deep Sea Drilling Protesters

Posted by feww on April 15, 2011

Bloggers Down Under call it

“Gunboat Democracy”

When a government uses the military against protesters

No it wasn’t Egypt or Saudi Arabia this time, not even the tiny dictatorship of Bahrain using the military to suppress citizens freedom of speech or their right to demonstrate; it was the [allegedly] democratic government of New Zealand  sending out a task force to threaten ordinary kiwis protesting against deep sea drilling off New Zealand coast.

The united front of te Whānau ā Apanui, Greenpeace and the flotilla opposing deep sea oil drilling is holding its position in the Raukūmara Basin as the HMNZS Pūkakī arrived after eight days of surveillance by an Air force Orion. Source: Greenpeace

In an act that would make the cruelest police state dictators fume with envy,  New Zealand police and naval forces dispersed environmental activists and protesters opposed to deep sea oil drilling off New Zealand’s East Cape.

Petrobras, the Brazilian oil giant,  ignoring the wishes of indigenous Maori, was attempting to carry out seismic test in the Raukumara Basin, when their work was disrupted by environmentalists.

New Zealand govt have since served notice that any protester blocking the “oil exploration off the East Cape would face fines of up to $10,000, a year in prison, or probably both,” a blog report said.

NZ ex-banker prime minister sends military against peaceful protest

High Noon in the Raukumara Basin as the naval inshore patrol vessel HMNZS Pukaki is sent to prevent environmentalists having their say.

“Tuesday 12th April, 2011. We picked up an unexpected visitor steaming directly towards us at 20 knots – it was the Navy, with their 55m coastal patrol vessel HMNZS Pukaki.” Source:  Vanessa Atkinson

Raukumara Basin

Map: Blocks offered under the offshore Northland and Raukumara Licensing Round. Source: PetroView®

The 25,000sqkm Raukumara Basin extends about 300km north of East Cape.  Source NZ gov.

License to Pollute

Without consulting the local Maori, New Zealand government granted Petrobras a five-year permit for exploration of the Raukumara Basin, off the East Cape of New Zealand in June 2010.

Local Maori feel the pollution risk to the water and fish stocks in the regions is too great, should oil be found off the East Cape of New Zealand.

Ironically, Raukumara Basin sits between Kermadec Trench and Kermadec Ridge, and has an inherently unstable geology. FIRE-EARTH believes any oil-drilling in the exceptionally seismic area would most certainly prove disastrous for the entire region. See blog content for New Zealand earthquake forecasts.

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