New $750m fund part of Climate-Safe Communities plan to protect towns and cities from flooding

The Green Party has today announced a Climate-Safe Communities plan to both cut emissions and protect our communities from the impact of climate change. 

“Our plan will slash emissions, bring nature back to our towns and cities, and protect our homes and communities from future extreme weather,” says Green Party co-leader James Shaw. 

“The three yearly election merry-go-round of empty promises about who will build the most roads is tiresome and, frankly, irresponsible, especially in the wake of the two climate disasters Aotearoa has already experienced this year. 

“Climate change is a dominant fact of everyday life for people right across Aotearoa. Our challenge now is to stop the climate crisis from getting out of control and to prepare for what cannot be avoided.

“Instead of having governments that are reacting to disaster, our Climate-Safe Communities plan will shift towards creating stronger communities. Resilient, affordable, inclusive communities that can meet everyone’s needs despite the challenges of the disrupted climate.

“It is a necessarily wide ranging plan that includes a new $750 million Urban Nature Fund to empower communities to create jobs restoring and protecting nature in towns and cities.

“We will also set rules to make sure developers and councils are working together to construct more resilient homes and buildings designed to handle extreme weather, and ensure greater use of green spaces that not only provide a space to relax, but filter and drain flood waters.  

“The Green Party has already committed to building 35,000 new warm, affordable homes over the next five years in the places people want to live. 

“Our Climate-Safe Communities plan sets out how we will achieve this without car-dependent sprawl that concretes over natural areas, or builds in flood-prone areas - and instead creates new routes for buses, walking and cycling, and street-level light rail in our three biggest cities by 2030.

“Every one of the changes set out in our Climate-Safe Communities plan are the ones that will make life better for people and nature anyway,” says James Shaw. 

Green Party co-leader Marama Davidson added:

“Imagine sending your kids off to school on their bike, knowing that on the way they’ll meet up with their friends, who are also on their bikes - and together they’ll get to school along a protected path, instead of driving through traffic. 

“Imagine jumping on quick light rail to get to work instead of crawling along gridlocked roads. Or living in communities with streets lined with trees, new parks, clean rivers and birds soaring overhead instead of concrete and tarmac. 

“Over the last two months, the Green Party set out a plan that will guarantee everyone has enough to cover life’s essentials, a warm, dry and affordable place to live that is powered by cheap, clean energy, and access to free dental care. 

“And today, as well as making sure everyone has what they need to meet life’s essentials, we are setting out how we will rethink the communities where we live and work so they provide spaces for people and nature to thrive.  

“This is our plan to bring our towns and cities into balance with a healthy climate and thriving nature. 

“It is a plan to make sure our towns and cities can meet the needs of everyone within the limits of the planet. To make it happen, we need more Green MPs and Ministers around the decision making table,” says Marama Davidson. 

Click here to read the full Climate-Safe Communities Plan.

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