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Get the low down


Cape to Cape’s mission is to raise awareness about the New Zealand government’s plans to sell off huge areas of our sea bed for deep sea oil prospecting. Cape to Cape wants to make the general public of New Zealand aware of the massive risks that deep sea oil poses and show that it quite simply isn’t a good idea.

Currently, exploration drilling is not publically notifiable, meaning there are no public submissions or hearings and that we cannot have our say within the conventional legal system. This needs to change and Cape to Cape aims to help make this happen.


Hi my name is Pete Ralph. I’m 25 years old and grew up in Russell in the beautiful Bay of Islands. I was always on or in the sea as a youngster whether it be sailing, surfing or diving. My love of the ocean and desire to protect it lead me to study Environmental Management alongside Economics at the University of Otago. After working as an environmental consultant for 2 years, I have decided to take a broader approach to protecting our environment, starting with the Cape to Cape campaign.


The journey is from the South Cape (Cape Palliser) to the East Cape of the North Island. I’ll be going past the Wairarapa, Hawke’s Bay, Mahia and Gisborne. The trip is about 675km. I plan on paddling 35km a day on average. The actual distance I paddle each day will vary quite a lot depending on the weather and where the access points to coast are. All up the paddle should take 19 days. I’m going to leave on the 6th of Feb 2016 (Waitangi Day).

A support van will be following me up the coast. The plan is to check the weather first thing each morning and decide how far to go that day and where I will meet the van. I will then set off at first light before the wind gets up, do the paddle for the day, then meet up with the van. I will always carry a cell phone, VHF radio, personal location beacon, spare paddle, flippers and rescue blanket on top of the food for the day and plenty of water. I won’t have a support boat.

The Route
Journey Stats
Total distance 789km
Average distance per day 27km
Estimated number of paddle strokes 228,000
Duration 29 days
Departure date Saturday 6th February 2016
Board 17’4” Starboard Ace GT
Paddle Small Starboard Carbon Bolt
Where I am tonight


This is important people


Each year the NZ government release areas of our exclusive economic zone (EEZ) know as “blocks” for oil companies to bid on. The government assesses those bids then awards exploration permits. Exploration can include aeromagnetic surveys, sampling, seismic surveys and well drilling.


The EEZ is managed through the EEZ Act 2012. When it was introduced in June 2013 exploratory drilling was publically notifiable meaning people could have their say via submissions and hearings. However, a few months after the Act was introduced this was changed. The public can no longer make submissions and there are no hearings before an independent board of inquiry.


Seismic airguns are used to find oil and gas deep underneath the ocean floor. Airguns are so loud that they disturb, injure or kill marine life, harm commercial fisheries, and disrupt coastal economies. These blasts are repeated every ten seconds, 24 hours a day, for days and weeks at a time, and harm marine mammals, fish and other wildlife. Impacts include temporary and permanent hearing loss, abandonment of habitat, disruption of mating and feeding, even death from beach strandings and and decompression sickness. For whales and dolphins, which rely on their hearing to find food, communicate, and reproduce, being able to hear is a life or death matter.


Our coastlines are part of who we are. We are a ocean nation who live, work and play by the sea. An oil spill off our coast would reek havoc on our marine environment and would have devastating consequences.


There’s no doubt that climate change is real and that human activity is largely responsible. If we carry on with ‘business as usual’ we could alter the world as we know it and threaten the lives of millions of people around the world.

We know we will run out of fossil fuels eventually so why not become fossil free as soon as possible and keep as much CO2 in the ground as possible.

Learn more at Greenpeace and 350 Aotearoa




You. Yes YOU!

What can you do to help.

Don’t think you can’t do anything. It was actions of the people that stopped nuclear war ships entering our waters, ended an apartheid and more recently, it was the huge public pressure that made the leaders of the world take note and finally agree to take the first steps in actually doing something about climate change.

Congratulations, you’ve already taken the first step. By visiting this site it shows that you’re interested in the issue of deep sea oil in NZ and hopefully you can see that it’s not the way forward. The next step? Taking action. Below are a number of ways you can help stop deep sea oil in NZ. And yes, every bit helps!

Know your stuff

To have meaningful debates about this issue we need to know our stuff. The section above has summarised information about deep sea oil and links to more detailed info. Please check it out. Stay updated.

Start talking

It’s vital that this issue isn’t ignored and just swept under the rug. People need to understand the risks of deep sea oil drilling. Have the conversation with your friends and family and share with them what you’ve learnt.

You could also write in to your local news paper (helpful guide), call your local radio station or visit you local MP (helpful guide).

Make some friends

The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Meet up with like-minded individuals, join a group. There are more out there than you might think!

Nothing in your area or tickles your fancy? Make you own group and list it here.

Be seen

Make a sign, put up a poster, wear a tee-shirt, walk in a march. Showing you care about stopping deep sea oil in NZ will make others take note and help win the national debate.

Download posters here

I can print either of the two designs above onto most AS colour men’s and woman’s T-shirts and singlets for $40. If you would like to order one please send me a message stating your preferred:

Design, T-shirt or singlet style, Colour, Size, Postal address

I will message you back with the payment details.

Put your name to it

Sign an online petition or send a message.

Take back your right to have a say on deep sea oil and sign the petition to make exploratory drilling a publically notifiable activity.

Sign the petition to make exploration drilling a notifiable activity.


This campaign is about raising awareness not money however if you would like to donate that would be greatly appreciated. All donations will go to Greenpeace, 350 Aotearoa and Oil Free Wellington.

Kiwi Bank  |  38-9017-0393294-02


Keep up with the latest haps


A short video showcasing some of our amazingly beautiful coastlines – definitely worth protecting!


Now that the trip is complete a few thank you’s are in order. I received a lot of help from so many amazing people and would like to say a


A short collecting of some of my favourite tunes that kept me going. Something to suit every condition.


Day 26 Today was the first time I properly lost my cool. A southerly was blowing and conditions were looking pretty good. The waves weren’t very big but they where


25 days at sea on a paddle board only to come ashore each night to sleep next to my snoring dad in a small, hot van – call me CRAZY.


Day 21 Spirits were high after yesterday’s dream paddle around the tip of the Mahia Peninsula and the forecast for today was looking good as well. The road more or