Councils, business vital partners in climate change adaptation
LGNZ President Dave Cull told delegates at the Climate Change and Business Conference that while businesses have led the charge to quantify the financial impact of climate change on their balance sheets, they need to expand their risk awareness to whether they will be able to operate at all.
That’s according to LGNZ-commissioned research, whose preliminary findings suggest billions of dollars of roading, water and building infrastructure are at risk from as little as half a metre rise in sea level.
As a result, local councils and businesses will need to work closely together to develop plans to efficiently manage climate related costs and measures to maintain the viability of regional economies.
He cited the examples of the east coast of the North Island where in some areas rising sea levels are threatening hundreds of homes and businesses. The Edgecumbe flood of 2017 saw 100 businesses directly affected, and required recovery assistance in excess of $700,000.