Storm damage highlights need for Govt action on rising seas

Massive coastal inundation in Kapiti and Waitara this weekend is yet another reminder to the Government that it has a responsibility to address the problem of rising sea levels caused by climate change, the Green Party said today.

High tides and stormy weather caused significant damage to sea defences and roads around Kapiti this weekend, and threatened exposed coastal properties in the Taranaki town of Waitara. Residents and councils in both areas have struggled to agree on how to address the growing risk of rising sea levels and coastal erosion.

“There is no clear strategy from central government on how to assist low-lying coastal areas that are threatened by rising sea levels. The people who live in those communties are being left on their own to deal with the problem,” said Green Party environment spokesperson Eugenie Sage.

“We know that sea level rise is happening right now. Thousands of homes, roads, and other local infrastructure are potentially at risk over the coming decades from coastal erosion and storm surges.

“New Zealanders can't afford for the National Government to keep its head in the sand about the real impacts of climate change.

“The Government needs to provide councils with clear national direction, guidance and resources on how to respond to rising seas as this becomes an even bigger issue into the future.

“Both Christchurch and Kapiti councils have tried to address the issue, but a lack of robust evidence and guidance from central government meant their efforts went nowhere. Dunedin City Council has been left to deal with the challenges in South Dunedin on its own.

“The Government should be leading a national discussion on how councils, local communities, and stakeholders such as the insurance industry can prepare and respond to rising seas and a changing world and how central government can best assist.   

We need more co-ordinated and extensive mapping of low lying areas and more investment in natural hazards research to better understand, predict and respond to the likely impacts of rising seas such as coastal erosion and rising water tables," said Ms Sage.

Action

Join our call to stop funding fossil fuels!

Take Action

Action

Virtual Events

We have activists across Aotearoa / New Zealand who are working hard to build a brighter future for our kids and grandkids. This page lists upcomin...
Take Action

Action

Support our Climate Action Plan for bigger bolder climate action

We agree with all five of the School Strike for Climate's demands. Read more and sign the petition.
Take Action

Action

Show your support to end housing inequality

New Zealand’s housing market is becoming increasingly divided between people who own their own homes and those forced to rent for life...
Take Action

Latest Climate Change Announcements

Story

Greens celebrate KiwiSaver divestment win, call for further and faster action

Following the Greens’ win that ensures government default KiwiSavers divest from the fossil fuel industry, the Green Party have announced a Members...
Read More

Story

Greens’ KiwiSaver win reflects urgency of climate crisis

The Greens in Government have won a significant change to KiwiSaver funds that will bring an end to investments in fossil fuels, Green Party Co-lea...
Read More

Story

New Zealanders asked to help shape future climate and energy policy

Switching New Zealand to full renewable energy and solving the challenge of climate change will ensure a better planet for our kids and grandkids, ...
Read More

Story

Emissions report shines a light on the road ahead

New Zealand is making progress to drive down its greenhouse gas emissions, but must go further and faster. That was the verdict of Minister for Cli...
Read More

Story

New Zealand will continue to showcase ambitious climate action

With the global climate change talks closing in the early hours of Monday morning (NZT), the Minister for Climate Change, James Shaw said New Zeala...
Read More

Story

Independent expert advisors on future emission reductions announced

Expert, trusted and independent advice will be essential to ensuring New Zealand plays its part solving the challenge of climate change. Today, the...
Read More