The Herald reports:
The applicants claimed the Government failed to meet environmental and consultation obligations under the Crown Minerals Act, Treaty of Waitangi obligations and international law.
Justice Warwick Gendall said their claims for judicial review failed on all counts. Not only that, he said that if he had found an error of law in the process he would have taken the rare step of not granting relief.
In effect, he is saying he would not have overturned the permit because of the time delay in the applicants’ issuing proceedings.
The challenge was not made until 15 months after the permit had been granted, by which time Petrobras had spent at least $8 million, and the time between the notification of the relevant block on offer and the challenge was two years nine months.
It is good the court found there were no merits to the claims, but also noted the extreme bad faith in filing so late in the piece.
Some environmental groups was to ban anything that has any environmental risk. Mining, fracking, drilling – ban it all. That is a route to poverty. Have a look at Australia. GDP growth in Western Australia is something like a staggering 16%, while in some of the large states, they are actually in recession. You can’t criticise the Government for the growing gap with Australia, and oppose the industries which are generating the wealth in Australia.
Of course risk to the environment should be mitigated and minimised. But it can never be eliminated.