An application to the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) by OMV for activity off the Otago Coast is a required
step towards further potential work, says the Petroleum Exploration and Production Association of New Zealand (PEPANZ).
"This is part of the normal rigorous regulatory process for any activity in our industry," says PEPANZ CEO Cameron
"The EPA has an important role in assessing applications like this, including assessment of the plans and any material
impacts activity might have.
"Overall there is very strict oversight and many rules and regulations before any drilling and production can begin. Our
industry is very careful to work with local communities and meet the highest safety standards possible, which is why it
usually takes years for new projects to begin.
"This activity is not covered by last year’s Government decision to end new offshore exploration permits. Existing
holders are required by law to use these permits or relinquish them.
"While there is no guarantee, a discovery of natural gas would be a massive economic boost for Otago and New Zealand as
"Taranaki provides a great example of how the industry can operate safely and successfully. They have the highest
incomes in the country and enjoy major community support and sponsorship."