Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


National earthquake standards unaffordable for communities

8 May 2014

National earthquake standards unaffordable for some communities

A policy requiring buildings to be demolished or upgraded to national earthquake standards is excessive and could be unaffordable for some communities, says BusinessNZ.

BusinessNZ economist John Pask says the policy is not necessary because normal market pressures are already leading to buildings being upgraded or demolished where needed.

“Earthquake-vulnerable buildings are already attracting higher insurance premiums and this will automatically lead to building owners strengthening them accordingly or demolishing them.

“Putting a regulatory requirement on top of this situation, where building owners have to upgrade or demolish within 20 years, is unnecessary.

“Smaller communities with older buildings could struggle to pay for extensive upgrading and might be forced to pull them down. The policy could lead to many buildings across the country being demolished needlessly.

“In many communities, common sense actions like removing unstable facades would be more realistic than significant strengthening to meet national standards, especially since earthquake risk differs in different places.

“The policy’s one-size-fits-all requirement does not take account of local conditions. Local authorities should be able to deal with earthquake risk according to their local risk profile so trade-offs can be made by communities most likely to be affected by earthquake-prone buildings.”

Mr Pask was presenting BusinessNZ’s submission on the Building (Earthquake-Prone Buildings) Amendment Bill to Parliament’s Local Government and Environment Select Committee.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Research: ‘Ageing Well’ Science Challenge Launched

Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce today launched the Ageing Well National Science Challenge, confirming initial funding of $14.6 million. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Govt Resisting Pressure To Pump More Cash Into Solid Energy

Prime Minister John Key says it is “not the government’s preferred option” to make a fresh capital injection into the troubled state-owned coal miner, Solid Energy, but dodged journalists’ questions at his weekly press conference on whether that might prove necessary... More>>

ALSO:

Lagest Ever Privacy Breach Award: NZCU Baywide Accepts “Severe” Censure In Cake Case

NZCU Baywide says that once it was found to have committed a breach of a former staff member’s privacy, it had attempted to resolve the matter... the censure and remedies for its actions taken almost three years ago are “severe” but accepted, and will hopefully draw a line under the matter. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: PayPal Stops Processing Mega Payments; NZX Listing Still On

PayPal has ceased processing payments for Mega, the file storage and encryption firm looking to join the New Zealand stock market via a reverse listing of TRS Investments, amid claims it is not a legitimate cloud storage service. More>>

ALSO:

Housing Policy: Auckland Densification As Popular As Ebola, English Says

Finance Minister Bill English said calls by the Reserve Bank Governor for more densification in Auckland’s housing were “about as popular in parts of Auckland as Ebola” would be. More>>

ALSO:

Crown Accounts: NZ Government Deficit Smaller Than Expected In First Half

The New Zealand government's operating deficit was smaller than expected in the first six months of the financial year, as the consumption and corporate tax take rose ahead of forecast in December, having lagged estimates in previous months. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news