National | Oil

'We're addicted to oil' - Dayle Takitimu

Indigenous rights and environmental law expert Dayle Takitimu responded to the Government's announcement to stop new permits for oil and gas exploration, saying 'the junky still needs to be fed unless we culture change away from oil and into renewable energy'.

"We're addicted to oil and we need to work out how to get ourselves off that addiction, that addiction is driving so much foreign policy including New Zealand's involvement in it at the moment it's driving war, it's driving a whole lot of things," says Takitimu.

She believes indigenous people are the best people in the world at practising renewable energy and need to play a role in leading the way.

"This living in competition with Papatuanuku has to stop and we have to get back to living in harmony with our environment and if we are an integral part of it rather than this master of the universe attitude that the resource management act and current Government policies support we need to get away from extractive industries, we need to look at solar look at wind power."

Takitimu played an integral part in leading her iwi, Te Whānau-a-Apanui in a battle against deep sea oil and gas exploration permit off the East Coast. The iwi exercised their customary rights over the Raukumara basin where Brazillian oil giant Petrobras had flotillas in 2012 and eventually handed back their prospecting licenses.

"We're not going to rest until Taranaki is free of this taniwha that's for sure, Taranaki has come to our aid and our support for a long time and certainly they have lived with this taniwha in their backyard since the 1850s so we're not going to forget about Taranaki it definitely needs to be addressed."