Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 

Climate change realities addressed by regional council

Climate change realities addressed by regional council

More severe weather extremes and significant coastal areas that could be affected by sea level rise are two of the key climate change risks for the Waikato region.

Now a new guideline to help respond to those risks has been adopted by Waikato Regional Council today.

Regional hazards team leader Rick Liefting says core council functions are all likely to be impacted by climate change.

These include flood scheme maintenance and management, catchment management, biosecurity and biodiversity, freshwater allocation, including discharges to freshwater, drainage and the provision of infrastructure along coastlines

“The climate is changing. While climate change is a natural process, increased greenhouse gas concentrations are projected to exacerbate the drivers of our climate in ways that we will need to respond to.”

While there is uncertainty over exactly what greenhouse gas scenario the world will be heading towards over future decades, the trend of change is “well accepted”, he said.

Mr Liefting said even if significant global action is taken now to reduce greenhouse gas concentrations, a degree of climate change is inevitable in our lifetimes.

“Climate change is often described as the biggest environmental challenge we face. The effects of climate change could carry tough economic and social implications for central government, councils and communities, due to increased risks to settlements, infrastructure and ecosystems from rising seas, storms and flooding.

“Serious consideration needs to be given to the potential future impacts of climate change. Particularly important are managing infrastructure and developments that will need to cope with climate conditions in 50–100 years’ time.”

The new guideline is a high level document that provides a framework for the council’s integrated catchment management (ICM) activities to address projected impacts of climate change.

“The purpose of the document is to assist ICM staff and provide a consistent approach to planning for a changing climate in relation to the many and varied operational activities we deliver,” said Mr Liefting.

The key principles ICM will adopt are based on using robust information from central Government and managing uncertainty on climate change projections. “Managing uncertainty for the future is challenging, so we need to identify and understand the ‘what ifs’ now to be flexible in managing climate change adaptation. Reviewing climate change information and using ‘trigger points’ as part of our design and review process will help us ensure our projects are sustainable for the future.”

Councillors have previously been advised the region is highly exposed to the projected impacts of climate change with, for example:

• more than 800 kilometres of national and local roads within 1.5 metres of current sea levels

• 266 square kilometres of land already below sea level in the Waikato and Hauraki catchments

• in excess of $2 billion of commercial and residential coastal property within one metre of current sea levels.

Also, more severe weather extremes are expected with more frequent dryer (drought) conditions in the north and east and higher intensity rainfall events in the south and west of the region.


ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Another Reason To Loathe HR Departments (And On The Teachers Strike)

This morning’s news item about Police emergency call centre staff turning up for work while they’re sick – because they’re afraid their sick leave statistics will be used against them, and their jobs put in jeopardy – is not an isolated case...

Obviously, sick people shouldn’t be being treated by doctors and nurses who are themselves sick and potentially infectious. Similarly, Police emergency calls also need to be fielded by people who’re feeling alert, and on top of their game. More>>

 
 

MPs' Computers To Be Searched: Inquiry Into Leak On Simon Bridges' Expenses

An inquiry has been launched to find out who leaked the National Party's expenses to the media... Parliament's speaker, Trevor Mallard, said a Queen's Counsel would lead the inquiry with the help of an employment lawyer and also someone with forensic IT skills. More>>

ALSO:

Teachers Strike: Nationwide Rallies And Marches

Teachers and principals voted for a full day strike to be held on 15 August to send a strong message to the Government that the current collective agreement offers from the Ministry of Education would not fix the crisis in teaching. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: City Council Ends Its Support For Jackson’s Movie Museum

The Wellington City Council and the Movie Museum Limited have today announced a mutually-agreed parting of the ways for a joint project between the Council’s Convention Centre and TMML’s Movie Museum... Both parties remain optimistic for the future of their respective projects. More>>

Pay Equity: Historic Settlement For Education Support Workers

The New Zealand Educational Institute (NZEI) and the Ministry of Education today signed Terms of Settlement to address a pay equity claim for 329 support workers who work with very young children in early childhood and primary schools. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Stereotypes About Jacinda Ardern

Routinely, female politicians get depicted as either show ponies or battle axes, with little room for anything else in between. .. More>>

Weekend Interviews: "Discriminatory And Racist" Aussie Deportations

The former president of Australia’s Human Rights Commission Gillian Triggs says deportations have risen dramatically in Australia since 2014 when ministers and ministerial delegates were given the power to cancel visas - and half of those being deported are New Zealanders. "These are massive numbers, actually escalating dramatically."... More>>

ALSO:

Legal Challenge: Prisoner Has 9 Boxes Of Documents Seized

Human rights organisation People Against Prisons Aotearoa says a prisoner they advocate for has had 9 boxes of legal documents seized from him just days before his case against the Department of Corrections was to be heard. More>>

Single-Use Plastic Bags: Govt To Phase Them Out

Single-use plastic shopping bags will be phased out over the next year, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Associate Environment Minister Eugenie Sage announced today. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages