Tag Oil, a Canadian gas and oil company, has been granted consent to drill two exploratory wells over a four-week period, which could secure them a long term ticket to drill. However, the iwi says it comes at a risk to waterways and wāhi tapu.
In Dannevirke, under 24-hour surveillance the Tag oil giant is searching for black gold.
But it's the waste that has iwi worried, with tonnes of drilling waste being put into hectares of land in the southern Taranaki region known as landfarms.
They say it's a travesty considering the drought conditions afflicting the country, however Tag Oil Chief Executive Garth Johnson has said the company strives to leave the smallest environmental footprint possible.
Reporter: Aroha Treacher.