Hapū seek to stop dredging in Hauraki Gulf

8:02 pm on 3 August 2021

An Aotea/Great Barrier Island hapū is seeking a judicial review as it tries to stop dredging and dumping in the Hauraki Gulf.

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Photo: Wikicommons

Ports of Auckland has been granted consent to deepen the Rangitoto Channel, which is a key approach for large ships.

Another consent allows for 2 million cu/m of material to be dumped at an established site near Aotea/Great Barrier.

Ngāti Rehua Ngātiwai ki Aotea, backed by other iwi, hapū and other environmental groups, want the consents quashed.

It argues the Environmental Protection Authority's process did not consider mātuaranga Māori in its decision-making.

A Ngāti Rehua Ngātiwai ki Aotea spokesperson, Kelly Klink, said the EPA also ignored a statutory obligation to engage with iwi.

"It is just another crown agency utilising these terminologies by having a Māori advisory committee and not actually listening to them, just doing as they're pleasing and ticking the box," Klink said.

"It's [been a] long, long process and it's really costly," she said. "It's cost thousands and thousands of dollars just to have a voice in this space, and that's the sad part, our voice should have been there from the beginning."

Another challenge by the hapū is before the Environment Court.

A spokesperson for the EPA said it was aware of the judicial ruling proceedings and would not comment while the matter is before the courts.

A Ports of Auckland spokesperson said the company was still studying the application, and was looking into what implications it may have.

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