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Community Panel Being Set Up To Help Response To Climate Change

A major step forward in responding to the impacts of climate change and sea level rise has been taken after the Kāpiti Coast District Council agreed with a recommendation to establish a Community Assessment Panel (CAP).

The recommendation was made by a Working Group consisting of representatives from Council’s Tiriti Partners, Greater Wellington Regional Council, Coastal Ratepayers United, North Ōtaki Beach Residents Group, Waikanae Estuary Care Group and Council staff.

The CAP will be made up of iwi partners, community and other key stakeholder/ agency representatives and will guide future development of District Plan provisions to manage coastal issues, while also considering approaches for the district to deal with coastal hazards.

The CAP will have access to cultural, technical, social and economic advice to inform its engagement with the community and allow it to deliver recommendations on coastal adaptation options for Council’s consideration.

These recommendations will include any potential cost associated with those options and will sit alongside national guidance and policy which is currently under development.

Mayor K Gurunathan thanked the Working Group for their efforts and says the establishment of a CAP is timely given the Government’s recent climate emergency declaration.

“I have covered this issue for more than 15 years so am very conscious that despite its complexities it is certainly not going away.

“As a coastal community with 42 kilometres of coastline we know we need to take action.

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“The CAP will lead a community conversation about what we need to do to help Kāpiti Coast communities adapt and thrive in the face of climate change and decide how we want to respond as our coastline changes over time,” Mayor Gurunathan says.

More information on the progress of this process will be provided early in the new year.

The Council agenda item and reports can be viewed here.

More information on the Takutai Kāpiti project can be viewed here.

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