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.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Shocking Dairy Footage: MPI Failing Our Animals And Damaging Our Reputation

Greens “Nathan Guy needs to urgently look into how his ministry is enforcing animal welfare standards, how these appalling incidents happened under its watch and what it’s going to do prevent similar incidents happening again in the future." More>>


Land & Water Forum: Fourth Report On Water Management

The Land and Water Forum (LWF) today published its fourth report, outlining 60 new consensus recommendations for how New Zealand should improve its management of fresh water and calling on the Government to urgently adopt all of its recommendations from earlier reports. More>>



Welcome Home: Record High Migration Stokes 41-Year High Population Growth

New Zealand annual net migration hit a new high in October as more people arrived from than departed for Australia for the first time in more than 20 years. More>>


Citizens' Advice Bureau: Report Shows Desperate Housing Situation Throughout NZ

CAB's in-depth analysis of over 2000 client enquiries about emergency accommodation shows vulnerable families, pregnant women and children living in cars and garages, even after seeking assistance from the Ministry of Social Development and Housing New Zealand. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news