The Rena wreckage is set to be abandoned off Tauranga, after it ran aground six years ago.
The Environment Court has today determined disputes between local iwi around whether the wreckage should stay or go.
Four local iwi and hapu appealed an initial Council decision to leave the ship's remains - arguing the ship spoils the reef and its cultural significance.
But a number of other iwi disagreed - arguing moving the wreck would cause more harm than good to the reef's spirit and its surrounding environment.
An abundance of sea life has grown around the Rena's remains, which are up to 36 metres underwater.
The Court found leaving the wreckage is in the best interest of the marine environment.