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Climate crisis ‘insufficient’ to halt oil and gas exploration, says New Zealand government

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Despite declaring a climate emergency, government is in court defending decision to issue fossil fuel prospecting permits in Taranaki

New Zealand’s government has argued that the climate crisis is of “insufficient weight” to stop it issuing oil and gas exploration permits – despite declaring a climate emergency and committing to eliminate offshore exploration.

The government is in court defending its 2021 decision to allow fossil fuel companies to prospect for oil and gas in Taranaki. A group of students sued over the decision, saying the ministry failed to adequately consider the climate impact of the exploration, or give enough weight to crucial documents including advice from the climate commission and the International Energy Agency’s Net Zero By 2050 report.

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