Four panel members split over Taranaki seabed mining application

DMC committee member Sharon McGarry

Permission to allow seabed mining granted.

Permission to allow seabed mining in south Taranaki was granted by the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA)’s Decision-Making Committee following an extensive inquiry that involved hearings in Wellington and New Plymouth.

However, details of the approval decision, released on Thursday, showed the four-member panel was split down the middle over Trans-Tasman Resources’ application, which is estimated to be worth many millions of dollars to the country.

It would see 50 million tonnes of material taken from a 66 square kilometre area off Patea every year for up to 35 years in order to extract iron ore.

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