NPM recently acknowledged a decision of the High Court to overturn an application to mine iron sands from the South Taranaki seabed.
NPM researchers worked closely with one of the iwi opposed to this mining, Ngā Rauru, including as part of a NPM funded research project in 2014 Māori Engagement in New Zealand’s Extractive Industry: Innovative Legal Solutions.
Anne-Marie Broughton (Kaiwhakahaere, Te Kāhui o Rauru) was a significant guest at the Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga Symposium on the Extractive Industry held in June 2015. Principal Investigator of this research, Dr Andrew Erueti (University of Auckland), along with Professor Jacinta Ruru, have been part of the support legal team for Ngā Rauru including at the Environmental Protection Authority first hearing of this case in 2014 and again in 2017.
The High Court decision finally recognises that “many taonga lie beneath the surface of the waters off the South Taranaki Coast” and “The tangata whenua see the sea itself (Tangaroa) as a living entity having a mauri or life force that is itself a taonga”. We celebrate this decision.