16 July 2018
Central and local government walking the same path on climate change adaptation strategy
Central and local government showed strong alignment on strategy for climate change adaptation as Local Government New
Zealand President Dave Cull and Minister for Climate Change Hon James Shaw shared the stage today at the annual LGNZ
Conference in Christchurch.
LGNZ President Dave Cull says local government knows that if we don’t take steps to mitigate the climate change problem,
the adaptation challenges that we’re experiencing will become even greater, more complex and significantly more costly.
“Despite all the challenges, local government views the need for climate change adaptation and particularly mitigation
as presenting significant opportunities. The challenges can be overcome.”
“There’s a very clear opportunity for local government to work with central government to put in place an adaptation
plan that clearly allocates roles and responsibilities and we’re looking forward to working with the Government to do
“There’s also an urgent need to get on with some adaptation planning now ahead of the completion of the first national
risk assessment – we can, for example, start work now on jointly defining a common set of goals, outcomes and priorities
“Local and central government must work together to develop a legal framework that incentivises and better supports
councils to undertake adaptation action and fulfil their ambitions for more resilient communities.”
“And there is also a need for more support from central government, as the costs of adaptation are too significant for
local authorities to bear alone,” says Mr Cull.
During his presentation today Minister Shaw agreed on need to work together to address the risks and costs of climate
change, “We need to establish a financial ecosystem to share and spread risk evenly between and within generations and
between central and local government.”
“This is our problem to deal with. We need to focus on the future and bring everyone along with us. We need to start
thinking about the opportunity, stop thinking about the cost, and think about the investment. Then we are much more
likely to find our way out of this,” said Mr Shaw.