South Dunedin and sea level rise

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, April 6th, 2017 - 44 comments
Categories: climate change, Environment, science - Tags: , , ,

In a week that brought more serious flooding to the North Island, Stuff reports that the University of Otago, the Dunedin City Council, and the Otago Regional Council have compiled a database of areas in Dunedin at risk from sea level rise.

Areas in South Dunedin less than 1 metre above sea level

Dunedin City

 

Dunedin has more houses under the 50cm above sea level mark than any other city in NZ. The new database looks at places less than 1 metre above sea level and includes flood hazards, how water might pond in different scenarios, house ages, demographic details, social assets and history. The University of Otago’s Centre for Sustainability has made a simplified version of the interactive map for the public that can show the different data.

South Dunedin by median personal income

 

From the University,

Dr Stephenson says asking how much sea-level may rise and how soon is important.

“But it shouldn’t overshadow the human side of the question, which is, ‘who may be affected and how should we respond?’.”

Dunedin City Council’s Second Generation District Plan proposal is for all new buildings in South Dunedin and other coastal areas to be relocatable. Developers are objecting of course, and it may be limited to residential buildings under 9m. It seems like a no brainer to me but I’m guessing most of the objection is because of the impact on the potentially lucrative development of the Otago Harbour waterfront.

It’s not just sea level rise. Dunedin is at risk from large rainfall events and these are expected to increase in frequency and intensity. Given the number of floods that the North Island has seen in the past month, now might be a good idea for similar mapping and database creation to be happening across the country (if anyone knows of other mapping, please link below).

Dunedin City Council commissioned a Peak Oil Vulnerability Assessment in 2010. It looks like Dunedin might be leading the way for NZ on preparing for the world we now live in and I’m guessing that South Dunedin residents in particular are having to grapple with the initial direct-impact realities of CC more than most in NZ. It’s harder to avoid seeing the climate for the weather when bylaws are about to affect your home and it’s not even raining. This isn’t flood prevention or even mitigation, it’s first steps in permanent change to how society functions. There is so much that needs to be done on auditing infrastructure and incorporating climate change into town and country planning. This is a start at least.

It’s also critical that we don’t think only in terms of adaptation, that we keep centred on mitigating the worst effects of CC and build that into everything we do. The Greens have a Bill that would require all government legislation to be considered within a Climate Impact Disclosure Statement and how the legislation would impact on climate and our GHG emission responsibilities. This would keep MPs and the public informed, give opposition parties more information to hold government to account, and would ensure that climate is a key consideration in the running of the country. Local bodies need to be stepping up for this too, so that it becomes normal for climate change to be at the front of our minds and how we manage our collective resources and communities.

Niwa’s Climate Change and Urban Impacts Toolbox

MfE’s Climate change effects and impacts assessment: A guidance manual for local government in New Zealand

Sea level rise map of NZ

The Green Party’s Legislation (Climate Impacts Disclosure Statement) Amendment Bill (draft for consultation)

Moderator note: climate change denial is not welcome here and will be moderated accordingly. I’m also aware that we could have big debate about whether 1m is a useful setting for councils and other bodies to work with. Please try and relate that back to the post, and let’s try and do something useful other than just talk about what is wrong.  

44 comments on “South Dunedin and sea level rise”

  1. Antoine 1

    I’m not sure how useful the 1 masl line is as an indicator. There may be homes above that line that are still highly vulnerable to storm damage.

    • dv 1.1

      Heres your chance then. WHAT do you suggest?

      • Antoine 1.1.1

        My suggestion is to get someone (meterologist, hydrologist?) To do a storm surge vulnerability zone and front foot that – rather than emphasizing the 1m line in the comms.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.1.1

          Antoine suggests we commission a study and do nothing in the meantime.

          At district and regional level, we have no choice but to plan for climate change because we see the effects directly: it’s far easier to open a conversation about “managed retreat” (for example) in a community that has first-hand experience of frequent floods.

          At a national level this government is in the way and needs to be knocked down and used as a sandbag, or something.

        • dv 1.1.1.2

          Knowing where the dangers areas are is certainly a step in the right dirrection. Other analysis can follow.

  2. BM 2

    Not looking good for South Dunedin.

    I can imagine the property owners will be rather pissed as this sort of prediction knocks a fair chunk off the value of their property and will probably turn south Dunedin into a run down slum.

    The issue now becomes can south Dunedin be saved? or is it worth being saved?

    • Paul Campbell 2.1

      South Dunedin is one of the densest areas of housing in NZ, while it’s not ‘a slum’ it’s largely not a high-income area, it’s lots of tiny houses with no backyards, lots of rental properties and pensioner flats, has been this way for generations

      • BM 2.1.1

        Would you build or invest in South Dunedin?
        How would you even raise finance or get insurance?

        I assume the council does actually have a plan to deal with this?

        • Paul Campbell 2.1.1.1

          Nope, I live on the hill, on purpose. My brother rents there, the water table is stupidly high.

          The council doesn’t really have a plan, though they at least mostly admit it’s an issue. Deciding that all new housing should be moveable seems to be a smart start

          • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1.1

            Getting to the point that they need to say that all new housing needs to have adequate floatation.

            And, yeah, if I was to buy a house I’d be looking at how high it and the surrounding land is above sea level.

    • jaymam 2.2

      Have a look at the 1 metre prediction for Auckland. Much of the CBD and seaside suburbs are below the 1 metre level. Anyway, what datum are they talking about? Mean Sea Level? Mean High Water Springs? Highest Astronomical Tide?
      I assume it’s MHWS.

      • lprent 2.2.1

        As someone who got exposed to earth sciences at a young age, I looked around New Zealand for a reasonably safe location to live. It turns out there isn’t one.

        So I did the next best thing, I brought a apartment in low block based on some impressive foundations. It is 85m above sealevel, just below the brow of a ridge on reasonably stable geology facing down into a gully with a higher facing ridge and with quite limited line of sight.

        It just happens to be inside the basaltic volcano field known as Auckland City, a type of volcano that usually telegraphs its intentions well in advance. But even so the geography should alleviate any urgent issues with the heavy (and short range) basaltic ash or volcanic bombs. And unlike most of NZ, Auckland is well off the major fault lines, and therefore doesn’t seem to have too many major earthquakes.

        Hey – I’m not paranoid. But after you look at the probabilities of natural disasters for a while and the potential downstream effects on peoples lives, you do get a wee bit cautious.

  3. dv 3

    I think that global insurance companies will have a role.
    Insurance premiums are going to increase in CC affected areas, if some properties will be insured at all.

    Maybe the insurance companies could/will build a factor into the premiums that reflects the countries response to CC gases?

    • Draco T Bastard 3.1

      The insurance companies have been aware of climate change and the increased risks for quite some time now. I find it interesting that our present government and climate change deniers the world over are ignoring what the insurance industry is saying despite them also telling us that business is always right – or, perhaps, it’s only the favoured businesses that are always right.

      Climate change threatens ability of insurers to manage risk

      The ability of the global insurance industry to manage society’s risks is being threatened by climate change, according to a new report.

      The report finds that more frequent extreme weather events are driving up uninsured losses and making some assets uninsurable.

      How the Insurance Industry Is Dealing With Climate Change

      “Our business depends on us being neutral. We simply try to make the best possible assessment of risk today, with no vested interest,” says Robert Muir-Wood, the chief scientist of Risk Management Solutions (RMS), a company that creates software models to allow insurance companies to calculate risk. “In the past, when making these assessments, we looked to history. But in fact, we’ve now realized that that’s no longer a safe assumption—we can see, with certain phenomena in certain parts of the world, that the activity today is not simply the average of history.”

      • dukeofurl 3.1.1

        EQC is the only place you can buy ‘flood insurance’

        You wont find it in any of the standard company policies
        eg State
        “This is the cover provided by the Earthquake Commission in the event of damage to houses and their contents caused by natural disaster such as a flood or earthquake.”

        But their cover is conditional
        http://www.eqc.govt.nz/what-we-do/house/conditional-building-consents

        Flooding would certainly be a ‘hazard’ for any new buildings in the area

  4. dukeofurl 4

    Its seems that South Dunedin has the affects of 3 things combining.
    1)It sits on an old swamp which usually means the ground level is sinking to some extent
    2)The shape of Dunedin harbour which can lead in times of low atmospheric pressure combined with winds in the right direction can lead to the sea level at high tide being ‘pushed up’ at the end of the harbour.
    3) the general rise in average sea levels

    I dont know if this is an complwete answer for South Dunedin but I noticed in Cairns which has most of the older city suburbs on reclaimed swamp land in an area of very high seasonal rainfall. These suburbs are crisscrossed with large drainage ‘canals’- they are roughly the width of a normal road and allow rainfall from the hills surrounding the flat land to reach the estuary of the Trinity river. ( The low lying areas get higher areas rainfall as water will flow to lowest point, maybe a bypass canal to the ocean frontage)

    • Paul Campbell 4.1

      A friend points out that a canal between the harbour basin and St Kilda could produce good tidal power generation …. build a canal down Queens Drive (we really don’t need two) which used to be train tracks anyway

      • dukeofurl 4.1.1

        Tidal power is best done at the opening to a inlet not at the far end.
        That would put the best location between Port Chalmers and Quarantine Is and Quarantine Pt. this location has 3 narrow openings.

        • Paul Campbell 4.1.1.1

          My plan for saving Dunedin involves putting a dike across there, and another across the St Kilda/St Clair beach ….

  5. Paul Campbell 5

    Before everyone goes crazy about South Dunedin, it’s not the lowest spot in Dunedin, the area around the airport is – the Taieri river is tidal around there but there are already dikes protecting the airport (mostly) from flooding.

    The thing I don’t understand: the regional council is responsible for things like protecting people around the rivers from flooding – what’s the difference between that tidal portion of the Taieri and St Clair beach? in that the Regional council is responsible for one but not the other (of right, of course, farmers)

    • weka 5.1

      At a guess I’d say that it’s because the ORC is responsible for rivers not oceans. It’s the Taeiri River that involves them in that. Am just guessing though, I don’t know about the airport issue.

      We can get crazy about the airport too, but my first comment is that there is no alternative to avgas on the horizon and in cc terms we will just have to stop flying except for critical reasons. I’d want to see adaptation conversations re the Dunedin airport happen in that context.

      I’d also like to see agriculture potential of the Taieri Plains discusses in terms of producing food for Dunedin.

      • Paul Campbell 5.1.1

        to do that you’ll have to stop Mosgiel expanding over what is some of the best soil in the entire country.

        (see above, I think we should put up dikes and reclaim the upper harbour, we could even put the airport there …. and reserve that wonderful Mosgiel soil for what it does best)

  6. Sabine 6

    i have been saying the same thing now for a long time,

    when insurance companies stop insuring businesses and properties then we will start talking about the issue of raising water levels and other inconvenient truth. Until then, many will just expect someone else to do something.

    btw, Edgecumbe is evacuating as ‘wall of water’ hits town.

    • weka 6.1

      Lots of business in South Dunedin, I’m guessing we’ll be hearing from them in due course.

      • Sabine 6.1.1

        i am not diminishing the issues that Dunedin has.

        What i am pointing out is that these issues are shared, and sadly until Insurance Companies balk at bailing out properties and businesses and stop insuring these that are in high risk areas nothing will happen.

        I looked two years ago at the property in New Lynn that was flooded in the last floods. On the way by there three days ago, i was shocked at the damage done, one side of the roads about 20 businesses all gone, and the ‘my’ shop on the other side has two walls gone, and the three businesses and one large upstairs businesses are are all gone too.

        This is one and the same boat Weka, Dunedin at one end, Akl at the other end, and Edgecumbe, Whanganui and other places in the middle. Non of them is prepared for what is coming.

        And in the meantime we build willy nilly, without a care in the world, concreting nature over, ripping out trees like there is no tomorrow and we wonder why shit is not working for us anymore.

        So it does not matter how many businesses or houses will be lost, until the Insurance companies stop paying out nothing will happen.

        • weka 6.1.1.1

          I wasn’t suggesting you were diminishing Dunedin’s issues, I was actually agreeing with you and pointing to the fact that South Dunedin has a lot of businesses in it. I’m guessing they’re starting to feel nervous too.

          I do think that Dunedin is a bit ahead of the ball compared to the rest of the country. It’s now framing this in terms of CC. The rest of the country is still largely talking about weather.

          Re the insurance, I agree there will be a big jump in attention once they start playing hardball. I think there is smaller change happening in the meantime. And the DCC banning the build of non-relocatable houses in South Dunedin (and beside the harbour) isn’t ‘nothing’. It starts the difficult process of what do to about SD, but just as important, it wakes people up. Even a few years ago people weren’t willing to take this seriously, now they are.

          edited.

          • Sabine 6.1.1.1.1

            yeah, my wording could have been better.

            I am watching the crumbling hillsides in AKL with interest. There is one overbuild cliff just right above the motorway leading to the Harbour Bridge. 🙂

            Can you imagine the mess when that pile of sand decides to slide?

            Te Atatu Peninsula with its multi million GJ Garnder Piles right at the water front, while the new motorway was build above sea level.

            Its there, everyone can see it, most know it, but still non so blind as those that keep their eyes closed on purpose.

            • weka 6.1.1.1.1.1

              I don’t know the area, can you find a picture?

              I’m old enough to remember Abbortsford (big slip in Dunedin in 1979). It beggars belief that we are still building in dodgy places.

              From what I remember some big chunks of east Chch were deemed unsuitable to build on because of the instability of the ground and the council and developers went ahead anyway. And that assessment of the ground wasn’t that long ago.

              It’s end of the empire stuff. If we have the money and big enough machinery why not keep building bigger and better? 😉 Boys with their toys, and the colonial mindset, everything has to be improved regardless.

              The interesting thing about Sth Dunedin is that it’s low socio economic and has lots of elderly people living in it. I’m hoping this will force us to some collective action.

              • Skeptic

                You must have seen the same maps and reports I saw back in the late 1970s that were with the old SAC (State Advances Corporation) and the old CWB (Chch Water Board). The offending developers were Enterprise Homes and Maugers – but they’re no longer around to answer for Bromley & Bexley. I would hazard a guess that deep in the bowels of DCC records there are similar files with reports and maps showing where building was initially prohibited due to unsafe/low-lying ground. Who paid off whom to get the houses built?

                • weka

                  I didn’t realise it went back that far. I only knew because after Chch2 some geologists spoke out about it.

                  South Dunedin suburbs are much older and I think the commitment into developing there would have been made long before there was recognition of a problem, or that level of corruption/stupid.

                • weka

                  Found this tonight, about the Invercargill 100 year flood,

                  The January 1984 floods also changed views on what constituted a 100-year flood, he recalled.

                  For Mr Goodman and his team, the floods were a vindication in one sense. They were about to be taken to the then equivalent of the Environment Court for making things difficult for a developer planning a subdivision on low-lying land.

                  After the floods, the hearing never occurred. But to this day Mr Goodman holds fast to a belief for public education about the lie of the land and what is likely to happen if there’s a flood.

                  http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/news/features/1984-floods/808687/If-its-this-bad-now-whats-still-to-come

                  • Skeptic

                    In the late 1970s the HCNZ – before it was downsized – was charged with “design & build” and had a whole section devoted to just that in each of the main branches in NZ.

                    Among the files – there were dozens of them – were geological surveys of nearly all NZ cities, major and minor along with water table reports, soil reports, erosion reports, probable liquifaction reports etc. In Chch, the Chch Water Board had files and maps showing the 1860 flood expanse, projected failure of Halkett stop-banks flood damage etc. I saw these, and so did innumerable other who worked there. Prior to Bexley and Bromley being built and a lot of the development near the Avon loop and east of the Avon , south of Aranui and Wainoni, much of the area was designated “Unsuitable for Building” in very large red capital letters.

                    I’m sure Dunedin had/had similar files and maps.

                    How these areas got built on/developed is something I guess must be too scandalous to make any type of inquiry about, because it would involve disclosure of bribes and corruption that far too many Nats and supporters would care to kknow about.

            • dukeofurl 6.1.1.1.1.2

              ‘Te Atatu Peninsula with its multi million GJ Garnder Piles right at the water front”

              Auckland Council GIS maps show Te Atatu waterfront properties being 10-15m elevation, a few older areas may be less than that on the estuary side.

          • dukeofurl 6.1.1.1.2

            ‘Non relocateabale’ just means no concrete slab floor, brick walls and tile roof.

            • weka 6.1.1.1.2.1

              I’m guessing the issue is people that want to build multi story and do out of the ordinary architecture.

  7. Philj 7

    Linda Clark expressed very serious concerns about the climate change issue on Jim Mora THE PANEL. It’s a classic, the gold is about 20 minutes in when Linda delivers the missile. Very funny and Jim is brilliant and so funny haha. A must listen. Brave stuff Linda. “The Panel with Gary McCormick and Linda Clark (Part 2)” on Radio New Zealand

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/thepanel/audio/201839285/the-panel-with-gary-mccormick-and-linda-clark-part-2

  8. Sabine 8

    i am not sharing your optimism, but i blame my inner german for that.

    This is an article from England last year, and i expect the same to happen here with regards to insurance.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3382241/First-flooded-fleeced-Victims-forced-pay-thousands-despite-promised-180million-Government-insurance-three-years-ago.html

    I have a hard time believing that anything worthwhile will be done to a poor/low socio economic area. They rather displace the people elsewhere then to finally start addressing the issue. And sadly, the Council alone can’t do it, it needs resources from the government and for now i don’t think it will happen.

    To an extend it abandonment might even needs to happen, but will it be done humanly or will people just be expected to ship out to where ever.

    https://www.google.co.nz/maps/search/Flanshaw+street/@-36.8414136,174.7452135,329a,35y,270h/data=!3m1!1e3

    Ring Street TCE. lol.

    • dukeofurl 8.1

      “i expect the same to happen here with regards to insurance.”

      Ah no. EQC is really the only place where you can get flood insurance for this type of thing. ( but you have to have fire insurance )
      http://www.eqc.govt.nz/what-we-do/eqc-insurance

      • Sabine 8.1.1

        these were areas that previously did not flood. So getting flood insurance was no issue, now however some of these places get regularly flooded and hence no insurance anymore or only with a huge deductible.

        this will happen here too.

        and i think the EQC is having problems already

        http://www.interest.co.nz/insurance/85658/iag-and-tower-demand-eqc-coughs-cash-having-allegedly-short-changed-thousands

        • dukeofurl 8.1.1.1

          I have to repeat this, but you havent read it properly. You dont buy flood insurance as a standalone. Its part of the EQC cover, I would pay the same rate as those along the Whanganui or indeed South Dunedin, and there is no chance of me flooding.

          Yes dealing with EQC would be one of lifes horrors, but the article refers to ‘land damage’ ( liquefaction in this instance) which is different to flood damage.

          • Sabine 8.1.1.1.1

            i am not talking about flood cover per se….

            what happens to the stuff inside your house? Home and contents? How many time do you think you can claim flood damage before they balk at insuring such things near a flood prone are?
            Car Insurance? Flood Damage?

            is that all coverred by EQC and how long can EQC pay out if these floods, earthquakes and wild fires become standard?

            that is what i speak about when i say “Insurance” .

  9. timeforacupoftea 9

    These guys are crazy from The University of Otago’s Centre for Sustainability always negative with no solutions only retreat retreat retreat, but then you expect that from an academic don’t you.

    It was far worse in the 1950’s 1960’s, our back yard in Tainui would go under water 5 times a year, but the water receeded very quickly.
    Around the late 1960’s the council built a pumping station and our back yard would only flood once or twice a year.
    We could dig down 2 spade depths in the winter and water would come and go daily, maybe it was tidal I never new why.
    Old photos of Tainui showed most of the area as a sort of inlet.
    Where Tahuna Intermediate School is, in the 1950’s that was a large pond where in winter it would freeze over and I could walk across it and play etc. It would stay frozen for a couple of weeks. Winters were much colder then at least at night but beautiful clear days.
    If the sea is ever to rise we do have many options, here are two ideas.

    1) A dam could be built between St Martins Island and Portobello.
    A lock could be built between St Martins Island and the mainland near Port Chalmers and ships could be allowed up into the upper harbour when there was no chance of flooding in South Dunedin. But most of the time the upper harbour could be kept at half tide or whatever height tide was necessary to keep South Dunedin dry.
    Which means there is this huge area for drainage during heavy rain etc.
    Some parts of the Upper Harbour could be filled in for future housing.

    2) Part of the upper harbour could be filled in obviously higher than the Portobello Road and block by block of South Dunedin could be shifted there temporarily so each block of South Dunedin could be raised to the required height above predicted sea level, then the houses could be shifted back.
    You might ask where would we get the fill from. Well there are many hills around Dunedin so no worry there.

  10. Michael 10

    There used to be a lot of Labour voters in Dunedin South before Clare Curran became the MP. Perhaps that explains why so little political will exists towards the people who live there?

  11. red-blooded 11

    “…before Claire Curran became the MP”

    Hey, Michael, Curran was reelected and her personal vote was higher than Labour’s party vote (which was still considerably higher than the national average). How does your dismissive comment account for these inconvenient facts?

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    Nick Wilson, Leah Grout, Mereana Wilson, Anja Mizdrak, Phil Shoemack, Michael Baker Protecting waterways has the benefits of: (1) protecting water from hazardous microbes; (2) minimising cancer risk and other problems from nitrates in water; (3) avoiding algal blooms that are hazardous to health; (4) protecting mahinga kai uses (cultural ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    4 days ago
  • Massey University triggered to rebrand
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In a press release today Massey University announced it has decided to rebrand and reorientate after struggling to be a University for grown-ups. For some time the University has wanted to be a safe play space for wee-woke-misogynists who have been really badly triggered ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Swinson backing calls for a second referendum (again)
    After a brief dalliance with 'hard Revoke' it looks like the Lib Dems are changing ground on on Brexit, with leader Jo Swinson reverting to calling for a second referendum on Johnson's deal.The party has tabled an amendment to the Queen’s speech requesting that any deal brought back from Brussels ...
    5 days ago
  • An odious bill
    The government has decided that someone has done Something Bad. But despite their belief, there seems to be no evidence that they have actually broken the law. So the government's solution is to pass a retrospective law allowing them to be punished anyway, on a lower standard of proof. If ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • National is now the party of climate arson
    So, Judith Collins has done a Facebook rant about climate change, peddling the same shit National has been shovelling for the past twenty years: the impacts are overstated, there's no need to do anything about it, and its too hard anyway (oh, and its so unfair that people who peddle ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The environmental footprint of electric versus fossil car
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz There is a lot of discussion on the benefits of ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    5 days ago
  • “Manifest” by Andrew Bird – A Song For The Times.
    I came across this song quite by accident. If it isn't one of Greta Thunberg's favourites - it should be.Video courtesy of YouTube.This post is exclusive to Bowalley Road. ...
    5 days ago
  • Passing the buck
    Last month, NZDF's shoddy coverup of what it knew about civilian casualties in Operation Burnham began to fall apart, with the revelation that a report on the matter, which NZDF claimed not to have, had been sitting in an NZDF safe for the past nine years. Yesterday, the man responsible ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • India a major player in Earth observation satellites
    While many imagine that countries like the USA and Europe dominate space activities, in fact India is now a major player on this stage. It launches satellites for its own purposes and also commercially, and has constellations orbiting our planet and returning data of vital importance to that nation in ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    6 days ago
  • The rot at the top (2).
    Thanks to a report from the Acting Inspector General of Intelligence and Security following a complaint by Nicky Hager, we have come to find out that the SIS illegally spied on Mr. Hager on behalf of the NZDF after publication of Hager’s 2011 book, Other People’s Wars. The NZDF justified ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Common misconceptions about “Global Warming”
    COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING MYTH 1: Global temperatures are rising at a rapid, unprecedented rate. FACT: The HadCRUT3 surface temperature index, produced by the Hadley Centre of the UK Met Office and the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia, shows warming to 1878, cooling to 1911, ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    6 days ago
  • A climate of tyranny
    For the past week, Extinction Rebellion has been peacefully protesting in London to demand action on climate change. The British government's response? Ban their protests:Police have banned Extinction Rebellion protests from continuing anywhere in London, as they moved in almost without warning to clear protesters who remained at the movement’s ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Collins crushes climate
    An essay by Judith Collins MP reported on Carbon News yesterday seems to show an alarming shift in attitude within the National Party. Collins argues against the Zero Carbon Bill, the Paris Agreement, and downplays the magnitude of climate impacts. The Paris Agreement was adopted in December 2015 and ratified ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    6 days ago
  • More disappointment
    When they were running for election, Labour promised to overhaul the Employment Relations Act and introduce fair pay agreements to set basic pay and conditions on an industry level, preventing bad employers from undercutting good ones. They followed this up by establishing a working group, which reported back in January ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • What do these mother-child studies really say about fluoridation?
    A list of indicators of bad science – many of these are found in articles promoted by anti-fluoride activists. Anti-fluoride activists have been pouring money into a scaremongering campaign warning pregnant women not to drink fluoridated water. They claim fluoride will lower the IQ of their future child. Fluoride ...
    6 days ago
  • Losing Labour’s Mills-Tone.
    Nothing Left To Say: Labour's pollster, Stephen Mills, remains swaddled-up in the comforting myths of the 1980s. As if the experience of Roger Douglas’s genuinely radical post-Muldoon policy agenda was literally a once-in-a-lifetime thing – as much as the party could possibly absorb for at least the next 50 years.MEMO ...
    6 days ago
  • Speaker: Disability and the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse
    The Royal Commission on abuse in care is very significant for the disability community. For many decades last century, thousands of disabled children, and adults who managed to survive, were locked away from families and communities. This was not for anything they had done, but for the perceived threat their ...
    6 days ago
  • Spain is not a democracy
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • UK Conservatives hate democracy
    With an unfair voting system, uneven electorates and an un-elected upper house, the UK's "democracy" is barely worthy of the name. But now the government wants to make it worse:The government has been accused of suppressing voters’ rights with the potential disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of people after plans ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • What is wrong with our building industry?
    Back in the 90's and early 2000's, the building industry was building leaky homes which should never have been granted consent. Now it turns out they've been building dodgy office blocks as well:New imaging technology has revealed hundreds of major buildings nationwide have defective or missing concrete or reinforcing steel. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Local bodies
    Local body election results were released over the weekend, to joy or despair depending on where you live. In Auckland, Phil Goff trounced John Tamihere, who is muttering darkly about running for Parliament again (but which party would want him?) Wellington is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Weta Workshop, except ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A future of government
      How could government evolve over the next decades? Reports of democracy’s imminent demise are greatly exaggerated.  However, satisfaction with political systems in many countries is low, so there is much to do for governments of all political stripes to improve relevance and trust. Digital technologies are seen as one ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Catalonia, interrupted
    Two years have now gone by since the Friday afternoon when my university-student son and I headed out of our Barcelona flat to a nearby primary school, designated as a polling station for the vote that was to be held the following Sunday: the referendum on Catalonia’s independence from Spain ...
    1 week ago
  • Sage Decisions Unwisely Over-Ruled.
    Overruled: The joint decision of Finance Minister, Grant Robertson (Labour) and his Associate Minister, David Parker (Labour) arguably the two most powerful ministers in Jacinda Ardern’s government, to grant OceanaGold the consents which Land Information Minister, Eugenie Sage (Greens) had earlier denied them, offers bitter proof of how hard fighting ...
    1 week ago
  • Government may ban voting in effort to get more people to do it
    More than double the number of people who will vote in this year’s local body elections have tried marijuana or urinated somewhere they shouldn’t have. As local elections look set for the lowest turnout in decades, with many regions falling well short of 40%, the Government is exploring a number ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Woman: Deleted.
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    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The Hollowest of Men Ride Again… SURPRISE!
    Musings continue apace about “the experienced businessman!” soon to be taking up a National Party MP position. Or to be more accurate, being parachuted into a seat to shut down their former MP Jamie-Lee Ross, who despite his own shortcomings shed at least some more light on the inner workings ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Barbaric
    The Ugandan government wants to murder gay people:Uganda has announced plans to impose the death penalty on homosexuals. The bill, colloquially known as “Kill the Gays” in Uganda, was nullified five years ago on a technicality, but the government said on Thursday it plans to resurrect it within weeks. The ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Is this study legit? 5 questions to ask when reading news stories of medical research
    Hassan Vally, La Trobe University Who doesn’t want to know if drinking that second or third cup of coffee a day will improve your memory, or if sleeping too much increases your risk of a heart attack? We’re invested in staying healthy and many of us are interested in reading ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Fighting Monsters.
    Freedom Of Speech? The Säuberung (cleansing by fire) was the work of the German Student Union which, on 10 May 1933, under the watchful eye of the Nazi Reichminister for Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, consigned 25,000 books to the flames in a ritual exorcism of “un-German thought”. According to the logic of the ...
    1 week ago
  • The next wave of kaupapa Māori politics: its constitutional, it must be.
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    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Night lights of NZ from orbit
    New Zealand has prided itself for decades with regard to its lack of pollution, and all will be aware that the ‘100% Pure New Zealand‘ meme is under threat through land, water and air pollution of various causes. There is another type of contamination that the country also faces: light ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Reporters deliver uplifting news to fleeing Japanese residents: they won’t miss any rugby
    New Zealand’s media is doing its part in Japan, reassuring those in the path of the storm that they won’t miss any rugby while away from their flooded homes. New Zealand sports reporters stationed in Japan for the Rugby World Cup have had the rare and heartwarming opportunity to inform ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Government in contentious discussions about whether to put surplus on red or black
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones is the only Cabinet member in favour of putting it all on green. As Finance Minister Grant Robertson finds himself with an enormous $7.5 billion surplus, the Government has begun intense, at times contentious conversations about whether to put the money on red or black at ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Jordanian teachers’ successful strike has lessons for here
    by Susanne Kemp At the start of September close to 100,000 school teachers went on strike in Jordan.  They demanded a 50% pay rise.  A pay rise actually agreed to by the regime back in 2014. In early October, however, in the face of government repression and threats, the teachers’ ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Why some people still think climate change isn’t real
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The SIS unlawfully spied on Nicky Hager
    Back in 2011, journalist Nicky Hager published Other People's Wars, an expose on NZDF's activities over the previous decade of the "war on terror". NZDF didn't like this, and especially didn't like the fact that it was base don leaks from their own. So, they had the SIS investigate him ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • October 2019 – Newsletter
    https://mailchi.mp/7d9133add053/closing-the-gap-october-2019-newsletter ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • And they wonder why we think they’re environmental vandals…
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Paying the price in California
    Last year, California burned. This year, to stop it happening again (or rather, to stop themselves from being found liable if it happens again), Pacific Gas and Electric is cutting power to half the state for a week:Schools are closed. Traffic lights down. Tunnels dark. Businesses unopened. Hospitals running on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Let’s Hear It For Up-Close-And-Personal, Hard-Copy Democracy!
    The Best Way: Missing from the on-line voting debate is any reference to the voting system that produces turn-out figures ranging from 77 to 93 percent of registered voters. The voting system used to collect and count the votes cast in our parliamentary elections. The system that involves citizens making ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 10/10: World Day Against the Death Penalty
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Talking Freer Lives: a Marxist gender-critical perspective from Australia
    Among the great new bunch of political friends we have been making recently is the excellent Australian-based Marxist gender-critical site, Freer Lives.  So we asked the comrade who set up that blog to write something for Redline on the blog, himself, his analysis of the rise of gender politics and ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Government spin accepted by union leadership
    by Don Franks  The Auckland City Mission is struggling with a 40 percent increase in demand for food parcels this year. A total of 23,020 were needed by June. Last month Missioner Chris Farrelly told the Herald the “cupboards are bare” and without an emergency food drive, he can’t see ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Forbidden Thoughts
    by The Council of Disobedient Women   Massey Wellington Student Association had a sit-in today. Imagine a sit-in. On a campus. Against a women’s rights meeting. Did the ’60s really happen or did we fucking dream it? They gathered in the student square, an echo chamber. Sitting on soft pillows ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Much love to my loyal Ukrainian readership
    For some reasons, my post about the mystery message from inside the Downing Street bunker seemed to catch people's attention.  Quite a lot of hits from NZ (unsurprisingly) and the USA (a bit more puzzlingly, but hi there, USAians!!) and 76 views from the Ukraine.I've celebrated my Ukrainian readers in ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Another day of bonkers GNUmours (again, sorry)
    First, almost a score of Labour MPs seem to have sent a letter to the EU basically begging them to accept a deal - any deal - just so Britain can get the Heck on with Brexiting instead of being trapped in limbo:
    To avoid no deal, deliver on the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour vs working class immigrants – again!
    by Phil Duncan In 2016 the National-led government suspended the Parent Visa Category, through which migrants were able to bring their parents into New Zealand.  Since then over 5,700 people have been in immigration limbo, stuck on the visa wait list. Labour is now bringing back the scheme.  Well, sort ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Speak Up for Women press statement: on Massey University and Feminism 2020
    The following was released yesterday (Tues, October 8) by the women’s liberation organisation Speak Up for Women. On 23 September Speak Up For Women announced that we would be holding an event at the Massey University Theaterette in Wellington. The event is called Feminism 2020. The intention of the event ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Farmers support dirty rivers
    The government is currently consulting on plans to improve freshwater quality. So naturally, farmers oppose it:South Taranaki farmers are preparing to fight proposed national freshwater changes that some fear will bankrupt them. The Government's proposed National Environment Standard on Freshwater Management, released in September, rated the Waingongoro River as one ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • No-one cares about local government
    Yesterday was the last day for (reliably) posting your vote away in local body elections. Turnouts are mostly much lower than the equivalent time last year (Palmerston North is down 2.3%), and so naturally people are pushing their online-voting snake oil again. Because the online census worked so well, lets ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The political ghosts of eugenics may matter more than the genetic
    This essay, on the political legacy of the eugenics movement, by Kenan Malik was originally published in the Observer on 6 October 2019, under the headline ‘The spirit of eugenics is still with us, as immigrants know to their cost’. Birth control. Intelligence tests. Town planning. Immigration controls. It’s striking how ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • “Surplus” again
    Another year, and the government has announced another enormous government "surplus". And just like last year, its nothing of the sort. When we have people homeless and sick and hungry, when we have schools and hospitals still falling down, when we have underpaid public servants and infrastucture unmaintained or unbuilt, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Inside the Downing Street bunker
    James Forsyth at The Spectator (I know, I know) has tapped one of his contacts inside Number Ten for an insight into the Johnson administration's thinking and strategy.It is fascinating, unsettling and quite, quite mad.  Some key points:Negotiations have stalled and the Johnson administration are keen to blame the EU: ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Taking Control Of The Nation’s Story.
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    2 weeks ago
  • Are GNUs extinct?
    Another round of tactical talks about forming a Government of National Unity have come to nothing with the Liberal Democrats still refusing countenance putting Jeremy Corbyn into Downing Street:Opposition talks on Monday made little headway over when to try and vote down Boris Johnson's government and who might succeed him as ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour chickens out again
    When the government was elected, it promised to lead the way on electric vehicles, and specifically to make the government vehicle fleet emissions-free where-practicable by 2025.They lied:There are 15,473 vehicles in the government fleet and only 78 are electric. When the coalition Government came into power in late 2017, the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Government announces 27 percent increase in Trades Academy places
    Two secondary-school initiatives are being expanded as part of the Government’s plan to see more young New Zealanders take up a trade to help close the skills gap.   This includes the largest single increase in Trades Academy places in recent years. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    41 mins ago
  • Methane reducing cattle feed one step closer
    The Government today announced its support for a project that could substantially reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions from cattle. The announcement was made as part of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor’s visit to Nelson’s Cawthron Aquaculture Park. The Cawthron Institute will receive $100,000 from the Government’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Bill to refresh superannuation system passes first reading
    Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the first reading of the New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension Legislation Amendment Bill. “Every New Zealander has a stake in New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension,” says Carmel Sepuloni. “They are our most common form of social assistance – nearly 800,000 New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government announces next steps in fight against measles
    Babies in Auckland aged six months and over can receive a free vaccination and children will all have access to vaccines, Associate Minister of Health Julie Anne Genter announced today at Papatoetoe High School.   The move comes as part of Government efforts to step up the fight against measles. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures: Connections, Identity...
    ***Check against delivery*** Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here, and to have the honour of opening this important conference on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs. Let us take the opportunity to acknowledge all the people who have helped make today possible, including our special ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Police trial new response to high risk events
    Police Minister Stuart Nash says the safety of frontline officers and members of the public will be the focus of a new trial of specialist Police response teams in three of our largest urban centres. Police have this morning released details of an initiative to be trialled in Counties Manukau, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Lyttelton Parking
    Feedback sought– Lyttelton commercial zone parking  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal to remove on-site car parking requirements for new developments in the Lyttelton commercial zone.  The proposal, by Christchurch City Council, asks that powers under section 71 of the Greater ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Hagley Oval
    Hon Minister Poto Williams Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration   MEDIA STATEMENT       Tuesday 15 October 2019 Feedback sought – Hagley Oval The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal about Hagley Oval. The proposal was developed by Regenerate Christchurch ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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