5 Oct 2012

Iwi wants all wreck removed from reef

6:32 am on 5 October 2012

Tauranga iwi Ngai Te Rangi is worried that the owners of the container ship Rena, may not want to remove all of the wreck from Astrolabe reef.

The owners have agreed to pay the Government $28 million to help cover the costs of an environmental clean up, following the ship's grounding off Tauranga a year ago.

Iwi chairman Charlie Tawhiao is concerned what message the financial settlement between the owners of the container ship Rena and the Government, may send to Bay of Plenty tribes.

He said the fact there's no mention of the need for the wreck to be completely removed, is a major concern for iwi.

Mr Tawhiao said he represents a tribe which has an ancient and traditional relationship with the sea, the islands off Tauranga, and the reef.

He said in their mind the only way the environment can be fully restored is by removing all the wreck.

The owners of the Rena have not yet indicated if they will apply for a consent to leave what's left of the Rena on the reef.