web analytics

Quake anniversary

Written By: - Date published: 7:15 am, February 22nd, 2012 - 18 comments
Categories: disaster, leadership - Tags: , ,

Today is, of course, the first anniversary of the quake that hammered Christchurch. 185 were killed and more than 11,000 were injured. The thoughts of the whole country are with Christchurch today.

Because the choice of local coverage is overwhelming, and because it is sometimes useful to get an outside perspective on events, here’s coverage from The Guardian:

Darkness at the heart of Christchurch, one year after the quake

There are new shops built from shipping containers, a theatre and a rugby ground soon to open. But at night, the empty city centre is a dark smudge among the suburban lights

Viewed at night from the southern Port Hills, the centre of Christchurch appears as a dark smudge among the suburban lights. Almost a year after the earthquake that killed 185 people in New Zealand’s second largest city, much of the central business district remains in the “red zone”, cordoned-off and uninhabited but for the work crews that pass through the security gates each day in their hundreds. …

So familiar have tremors become in Christchurch that locals are unnervingly good at instantly estimating the magnitude of an earthquake. They have had plenty of practice. Since the 7.1 quake in September 2010 – the first and biggest, which caused no fatalities in part thanks to its arrival in the middle of the night – geologists have measured more than 10,000 earthquakes in the region.

Of those, more than 400 have registered over magnitude 4.0; more than 40 have surpassed 5.0. A cluster of three earthquakes measuring up to 6.0 struck two days before Christmas, causing fresh damage to buildings, including the cathedral, and closing the airport.

Days later, the state geological agency predicted that the area could expect aftershocks to continue for more than two decades, albeit with the likelihood of diminishing severity.

Behind the deadlines of disaster, damage, and rebuilding, there are the people of Christchurch. Echoing the strains described in our own most recent post on the subject (The limits of resilience) The Guardian finds the mood weary, brittle, and frustrated.

But the mood in Christchurch is hardly one of unified optimism. Disaffection with the pace of recovery, especially in the eastern suburbs where thousands of homes are unsafe, is high. …

Leanne Curtis, spokeswoman for CanCern, a network of residents’ groups, says people need to see firm timetables for the restoration of their homes and community facilities. “Without that you become a very depressed city,” she says. “It’s a very bad place for us to be mentally – you can’t build, innovate, be entrepreneurial. You lose motivation, capacity to get up and help ourselves. You can’t remake a city out of depression.”

Communities in the east, and especially those which still await a government decision on whether their land is viable for rebuilding, are boiling over with frustration – with the insurance companies, with the authorities and with a sense of being overlooked, says Curtis. …

“There’s none of this ‘we’re so resilient, we’re so strong’ from anybody on the ground,” says Curtis. “In the east, people don’t feel resilient, they feel tired, frustrated, like nothing’s happening. There is very little vision, very little leadership, very little co-ordination.”

Today we remember the past. But tomorrow we as a country need to to step up the efforts to help the people of Christchurch. They need information, certainty, action and results. The government needs to lift its game, and the insurance industry roadblocks need to be swept away. Christchurch has waited long enough.

18 comments on “Quake anniversary ”

  1. A year…

    I’m sending my love and support to all who have suffered and are still suffering in Otautahi/Christchurch. I’ve met some who lost loved ones and I have many friends who are still living there. My thoughts and heart are with you all especially today, a year after the terrible event.

    arohanui

  2. rosy 2

    One year and 10,000 quakes later our thoughts are still with you. Kia kaha.

  3. Kia Kaha to those who survived the earthquake.
    Kia Kaha to those who survived the demoralising aftershocks.
    Kia Kaha to those who have to endure the recovery.
    As a nation and a people we stand with you.

  4. vto 4

    the shortest words to describe ….

    shell shocked

    … a sombre day in Christchurch

  5. muzza 5

    I woke up on the morning of the 22, in the UK to hear about the quakes that had happened overnight, and on top of the Pike Creek disaster which had not even sunk in, I seriously felt ill for NZ.

    All NZ has been touched or affected by these trajedies, and one year on, my concern is that those affected most are being badly let down, by those who are supposed to help!

    The people are the ones who have helped eachother the most, and this just shows that we can get by despite the governments efforts to get in the way.

    Today we remember Christchurch, and those families and friends who perished, however we should also allow ourselves to remember the coming together in support, and help, and love of the entire country.

    We are as one, and we would do well to remember that collectively we have the power

    Kia Kaha!

  6. Jono 6

    Please John, no more earthcake

  7. millsy 7

    One year ago.

    We should also spare a thought for those who are still in limbo because of the quake, and/or living in temporary or transient accommodation because they lost their homes, and are still trying to piece their lives back together. Or those who have lost their jobs and businesses and of course, those who were not insured for various reasons, and have more or less being told hard luck by the authorities, in an amazing display of callousness.

    The future is far from certain for these people.

    • Vicky32 7.1

      We should also spare a thought for those who are still in limbo because of the quake, and/or living in temporary or transient accommodation because they lost their homes, and are still trying to piece their lives back together.

      Can someone tell me about the situation of those who were renting at the time, or who were beneficiaries/minimum wage workers at the time? The media has ignored these people…

      • Populuxe1 7.1.1

        That’s easy, Vicky, we’re fucked if we can’t find a job elsewhere, in a shitty economic climate, that would recoup the cost of relocating. Rentals are shooting sky high and being snapped up by builders and bureaucrats.

        • Vicky32 7.1.1.1

          That’s easy, Vicky, we’re fucked if we can’t find a job elsewhere, in a shitty economic climate, that would recoup the cost of relocating. Rentals are shooting sky high and being snapped up by builders and bureaucrats.

          Thanks for telling me – I thought as much! 🙁 You have my sympathies…

      • Anne 7.1.2

        Can someone tell me about the situation of those who were renting at the time, or who were beneficiaries/minimum wage workers at the time? The media has ignored these people.

        Exactly. I turned the TV news off in disgust this evening. Crocodile tears for the poor, poor people who lost – or are about to lose – their beautiful homes. Most of them will recoup their value, and be able to rebuild or buy somewhere else. But never a word about those who really are poor (frequently through no fault of their own) and have lost their accomodation due to greedy landlords who have upped the rentals beyond what they can afford. I suspect most have been forced out of ChCh and are struggling to pick up the pieces elsewhere without so much as a skerrick of assistance.

    • rosy 7.2

      “We should also spare a thought for those who are still in limbo because of the quake, and/or living in temporary or transient accommodation because they lost their homes, and are still trying to piece their lives back together. Or those who have lost their jobs and businesses and of course”

      Thanks Millsy… this describes my son’s situation perfectly, and yes, his future is far from certain.

  8. I was looking at the Native American myths on the California Online Archive; there is a myth that deals with Earthquake where Eathquake comes to the town of the last human beings. It struck me that this is how those in Christchurch must feel. I refer to it in my latest post.
    http://nowoccupy.blogspot.com/2012/02/brave-brave-christchurch.html
    Settlements should be expedited so that those affected can get on with things.

  9. Andy-Roo 9

    Lots of powerful emotions being experienced by people all over the country today.

    I did like this take on things from a local CHCH writer:

    http://helenlowe.info/blog/2012/02/22/commemorating-february-22nd-2010/

  10. vto 10

    Phewee, we went through 12:51 with nary a nudge from the Great Earth Monster below..

  11. DS 11

    The on-going support from the people of NZ (and the wider global community) is appreciated by those of us in Christchurch more than we can possibly say.

    Thank you all.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • COVID-19 vaccine slated for possible approval next week
    The green light for New Zealand’s first COVID-19 vaccine could be granted in just over a week, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said today. “We’re making swift progress towards vaccinating New Zealanders against the virus, but we’re also absolutely committed to ensuring the vaccines are safe and effective,” Jacinda Ardern said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • New ACC Board members announced.
    The Minister for ACC is pleased to announce the appointment of three new members to join the Board of ACC on 1 February 2021. “All three bring diverse skills and experience to provide strong governance oversight to lead the direction of ACC” said Hon Carmel Sepuloni. Bella Takiari-Brame from Hamilton ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Economic boost for Southland marae
    The Government is investing $9 million to upgrade a significant community facility in Invercargill, creating economic stimulus and jobs, Infrastructure Minister Grant Robertson and Te Tai Tonga MP Rino Tirikatene have announced.  The grant for Waihōpai Rūnaka Inc to make improvements to Murihiku Marae comes from the $3 billion set ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Celebrating the Entry Into Force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
    [Opening comments, welcome and thank you to Auckland University etc] It is a great pleasure to be here this afternoon to celebrate such an historic occasion - the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. This is a moment many feared would never come, but ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Supporting disabled people to stay connected
    The Government is providing $3 million in one-off seed funding to help disabled people around New Zealand stay connected and access support in their communities, Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni announced today. The funding will allow disability service providers to develop digital and community-based solutions over the next two ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Voluntary saliva testing offered to quarantine workers from Monday
    Border workers in quarantine facilities will be offered voluntary daily COVID-19 saliva tests in addition to their regular weekly testing, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. This additional option will be rolled out at the Jet Park Quarantine facility in Auckland starting on Monday 25 January, and then to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Next steps in firearms buy-back
    The next steps in the Government’s ambitious firearms reform programme to include a three-month buy-back have been announced by Police Minister Poto Williams today.  “The last buy-back and amnesty was unprecedented for New Zealand and was successful in collecting 60,297 firearms, modifying a further 5,630 firearms, and collecting 299,837 prohibited ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature projects target iconic ecosystems
    Upscaling work already underway to restore two iconic ecosystems will deliver jobs and a lasting legacy, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says.  “The Jobs for Nature programme provides $1.25 billion over four years to offer employment opportunities for people whose livelihoods have been impacted by the COVID-19 recession. “Two new projects ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Public Housing Plan announced
    The Government has released its Public Housing Plan 2021-2024 which outlines the intention of where 8,000 additional public and transitional housing places announced in Budget 2020, will go. “The Government is committed to continuing its public house build programme at pace and scale. The extra 8,000 homes – 6000 public ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates President Joe Biden on his inauguration
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated President Joe Biden on his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States of America. “I look forward to building a close relationship with President Biden and working with him on issues that matter to both our countries,” Jacinda Ardern said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature funding will create training and employment opportunities
    A major investment to tackle wilding pines in Mt Richmond will create jobs and help protect the area’s unique ecosystems, Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor says. The Mt Richmond Forest Park has unique ecosystems developed on mineral-rich geology, including taonga plant species found nowhere else in the country. “These special plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pre-departure testing extended to all passengers to New Zealand
    To further protect New Zealand from COVID-19, the Government is extending pre-departure testing to all passengers to New Zealand except from Australia, Antarctica and most Pacific Islands, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The change will come into force for all flights arriving in New Zealand after 11:59pm (NZT) on Monday ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Bay Cadets learn skills to protect environment
    Bay Conservation Cadets launched with first intake Supported with $3.5 million grant Part of $1.245b Jobs for Nature programme to accelerate recover from Covid Cadets will learn skills to protect and enhance environment Environment Minister David Parker today welcomed the first intake of cadets at the launch of the Bay ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Cook Islanders to resume travel to New Zealand
    The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Mark Brown have announced passengers from the Cook Islands can resume quarantine-free travel into New Zealand from 21 January, enabling access to essential services such as health. “Following confirmation of the Cook Islands’ COVID ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Supporting communities and landowners to grow employment opportunities
    Jobs for Nature funding is being made available to conservation groups and landowners to employ staff and contractors in a move aimed at boosting local biodiversity-focused projects, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan has announced. It is estimated some 400-plus jobs will be created with employment opportunities in ecology, restoration, trapping, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Border exception for some returning international tertiary students
    The Government has approved an exception class for 1000 international tertiary students, degree level and above, who began their study in New Zealand but were caught offshore when border restrictions began. The exception will allow students to return to New Zealand in stages from April 2021. “Our top priority continues ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Tiwai deal gives time for managed transition
    Today’s deal between Meridian and Rio Tinto for the Tiwai smelter to remain open another four years provides time for a managed transition for Southland. “The deal provides welcome certainty to the Southland community by protecting jobs and incomes as the region plans for the future. The Government is committed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New member for APEC Business Advisory Council
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has appointed Anna Curzon to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC). The leader of each APEC economy appoints three private sector representatives to ABAC. ABAC provides advice to leaders annually on business priorities. “ABAC helps ensure that APEC’s work programme is informed by business community perspectives ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt’s careful economic management recognised
    The Government’s prudent fiscal management and strong policy programme in the face of the COVID-19 global pandemic have been acknowledged by the credit rating agency Fitch. Fitch has today affirmed New Zealand’s local currency rating at AA+ with a stable outlook and foreign currency rating at AA with a positive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Additional actions to keep COVID-19 out of NZ
    The Government is putting in place a suite of additional actions to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, including new emerging variants, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Given the high rates of infection in many countries and evidence of the global spread of more transmissible variants, it’s clear that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 19 projects will clean up and protect waterways
    $36 million of Government funding alongside councils and others for 19 projects Investment will clean up and protect waterways and create local jobs Boots on the ground expected in Q2 of 2021 Funding part of the Jobs for Nature policy package A package of 19 projects will help clean up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand Government acknowledges 175th anniversary of Battle of Ruapekapeka
    The commemoration of the 175th anniversary of the Battle of Ruapekapeka represents an opportunity for all New Zealanders to reflect on the role these conflicts have had in creating our modern nation, says Associate Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Kiri Allan. “The Battle at Te Ruapekapeka Pā, which took ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago