The history of the interaction of Ngāti Tuwharetoa (Bay of Plenty) with the Crown was detailed in the Waitangi Tribunal’s Ngāti Awa Raupatu Report, published in 1999. The Ngāti Tuwharetoa (Bay of Plenty) claims relating in general terms to breaches by the Crown of its obligations under the Treaty of Waitangi. In particular, these are the confiscation of most of the land within the tribe’s traditional territory, the inadequacies of the Compensation Court process, and the subsequent alienation of the remaining lands that were subject to the native land laws and Crown purchasing. This loss of land had an impact on the access of Ngāti Tuwharetoa (Bay of Plenty) to resources such as the coast and the swamp that traditionally provided food, medicine, and shelter. They also lost control over some of their urupā and significant sites. Ngāti Tuwharetoa (Bay of Plenty) were further aggrieved in the twentieth century by the draining of the Rangitaiki swamplands and other environmental modification and pollution, which had an adverse impact on the traditional lands and wāhi tapu (sacred sites) of Ngāti Tuwharetoa (Bay of Plenty). They also lost control of and access to the geothermal resources at Kawerau which was an important spiritual and cultural site. While the majority of the Act recognizes the impact of the Crown’s breaches on the people of Ngāti Tuwharetoa, this is expressed in a way in which they were spiritually and emotionally bound to and physically sustained by much of the land. Particularly schedule 8, in relation to The Tarawera River and its waters, it is stated that the iwi living along the banks of the Tarawera River centered their life around the river. They were spiritually and emotionally bound to and physically sustained by its waters, holding healing ceremonies by and in the river. Consequently, the Act provides:
– An agreed historical account and Crown acknowledgments, that form the basis for a Crown Apology to Ngāti Tuwharetoa (Bay of Plenty);
– Cultural redress; and
– Financial and commercial redress.