Benefits And Consequences Of Offshore Drilling In New Zealand

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Oil has increasingly become an important resource which enables the world to continue with its necessities of life and its luxuries. Offshore oil drilling is the method of which acquires the oil. This method has already begun in New Zealand. In spite of its significant importance in the world, this method to obtain oil creates more negative consequences, such as environmental pollution, than positive benefits, such as economic gain. Therefore, considering both the benefits and its consequences, this essay will discuss whether offshore drilling for oil in New Zealand is worth it?
Offshore oil drilling offers New Zealand the chance to create employment opportunities, and lose their reliance and dependency of importing oil from other countries.
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New Zealand is renowned for its ‘green’ environment, a feature that is also largely responsible to attract tourists to its country, and export revenue, (GREENPEACE New Zealand, 2012). Further constructions of offshore drilling sites in New Zealand, increases the risk of oil spills on a large scale, (Rees & Sharp, 2011). This could increase the chance of potentially destroying wildlife and their habitats at a large scale. Marine life will be directly and immediately affected. This in turn will affect exports as it contributes to $1.2 to $1.5 billion of revenue per annum for New Zealand, (Fish.govt.nz, 2014). New Zealand second largest revenue industry is tourism. Thus if environment pollution were to occur, as a direct result from oil spills which is associated with offshore drilling, it could damage the 100% Pure campaign which attracts a considerable amount of travelers to New Zealand from around the globe. These direct results from oil spills will then lead to a chain of negative consequences such as an increase in job loss in not only the aquaculture and tourism sector but also the petroleum and minerals …show more content…
According to research by Green Peace, which shows the volume of oil spills and its associated risk on the environment, they believe New Zealand would not be able to cope with oil spills on a large scale ,(GREENPEACE New Zealand, 2012). Therefore, if New Zealand creates more offshore drilling sites, it further increases the risk of environmental pollution on a wider scale. To further exemplify the extent of the risks involved, would include the relationship and comparison of the New Zealand oil spill response strategy with the BP Disaster of 2010. Green Peace (GREENPEACE New Zealand, 2012), states that “Maritime New Zealand maintains the capacity to respond to spills of up to 3,500 tonnes”, the BP disaster consisted of 200,000 tonnes of oil spill. Bratspies argues that the BP disaster endangered lives of both employees during the cleanup and also marine life and habitats, (Bratspies, 2011). The Green Party argues (Gareth Hughes speaks on Maritime Transport Amendment Bill and Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf (Environmental Effects) Amendment Bill - Third reading, 2013), that New Zealand does not have the resources or number of people trained to handle an oil spill of that size. To date, the largest oil spill in New Zealand was

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