Tauranga Moana iwi focus on oil spill clean up not who to blame

By Mere McLean
  • North Island: East Coast

Tauranga Moana iwi want to focus on the cleaned up and not who to blame, after an oil spill in the harbour on Monday. 

Bay of Plenty Regional Council has yet to confirm how much oil has been spilled as they enter into day four of their response work. 

Oil waste found today along the Maungatapu shoreline where the significant burial site known as Waitara, is situated. 

The Bay of Plenty Regional Council is fitting the bill for the clean-up following a spill by Mobil Oil New Zealand on Monday.  Yesterday over 70 people work along here in Maungatapu and Bridge Marina.

Adrian Heays says, “One of the questions that everybody wants is a number. Everybody wants to know how much was spilled.  You know we want to know how much was spilled, we have asked that to Mobil.  But I do understand the difficulties of them providing that information.”

The spill affected traditional Māori sites like Waitaia and Te Motu o Puhi. 

Des Heke says that the blame for this situation can be dealt with later. 

“Firstly we should fix up this area and that is happening with the help of the community.”

From here, the waster will be disposed by Envirowaste at its specialist facility in Waikato. 

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