Towards National Recovery

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, February 20th, 2023 - 42 comments
Categories: chris hipkins, disaster, economy, election 2023, elections, Environment, labour - Tags:

Just over seven months from the election the Labour government has been granted as great a political momentum as that leading into the 2020 election.

Labour now shows all signs of pulling out of the death-stall it was trapped within under Ardern, to pulling up into near-total media and political dominance. This in the course of less than a month from Hipkins’ swearing in.

From Budget 2023 likely in May, to election in October, is just 5 months.

The recovery plan and Budget 2023 set the course for the election campaign.

Cabinet now prepares for the rebuild of the northern half of New Zealand. The rebuild is according to Minister Woods larger than the Christchurch earthquake recovery over a decade ago. Direct state asset liabilities include damage to about 20% of the North Island’s road and bridge networks, rail network, telecommunication network, central electricity network, massive welfare increases, and civil defence costs. To pay for this rebuild, the export economy that provides a substantial part of the state income has been materially weakened with damage to about 60% of its pip fruit exports, and 10% of its dairy exports. Both of those would have been at peak production for export right now.

The entire National Land Transport Plan into which local governments have all put their regional bids will have to be drastically revised to enable this recovery.

EQC will receive claims that will hit the limit of what they are able to provide.

The above will have a material effect upon Budget 2023, into which submissions were supposed to close on January 29th just gone. Departmental bids are already in. The previous policy drivers of Budget 2023 were focused on:

  • Continuing to keep New Zealand safe from COVID-19
  • Laying the foundations for the future, including addressing key issues such as our climate change response, housing affordability, and
  • child poverty.

Even as bodies are still recovered and towns and families are reconnected to each other, Treasury will be figuring out new policy drivers to enable this scale of national emergency response. It is going to require a completely new budget.

This Budget reallocation for central government will also be mirrored in local government budgets out for consultation throughout the northern half of the North Island as they too seek to respond and rebuild to this declared national emergency.

Prime Minister Hipkins had already put the spade through some projects such as Auckland light rail, the RNZ-TVNZ merger, and worker unemployment insurance. Expect the 2nd Waitemata Crossing plan to also be iced. Minister Wood has said that other projects included water infrastructure especially stormwater. He has said there needed to be “better coordination between transport, council, and water agencies about stormwater …”. That was before Gabrielle.

If I were to speculate I’d say that out of this will emerge a single national water entity asset owner and operator with a Board that includes Maori representation. Just like the centralisation of health and tertiary training. The state is not yet strong enough to withstand shocks of this magnitude, but it is the only public entity capable of growing such strength. This will be reflected in water governance.

Minister of Finance Grant Robertson is holding the ship as steady as he can as this budget reprioritisation is underway, noting that Core Crown tax revenue was .7% below forecast at $54.5 billion with core Crown expenses at .7% above forecast at $60.5 billion. Net debt is 21.6% of GDP, roughly the same as forecast, yet interest repayments are now ever-growing.

But none of the big bills have arrived yet, and they are going to come in fast. Anyone who thinks this isn’t a graver test of the entire collective strength of the state and far greater than COVIDs, is fooling themselves.

Even before Cyclone Gabrielle, the OECD was predicting New Zealand would be in economic stagnation.

Businesses surveyed by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand expect that the economy will basically stop, with an average of .79% growth for 2023. That’s down from an expectation of 1.27% for the year just 3 months ago.

Economic growth expectations help banks prepare capital, businesses prepare for consumer demand and for their own investment and employment planning, and help IRD predict the kind of tax take they could get. It is a dire forecast.

Let’s remind ourselves of the big spend areas from Budget 2022 to get a sense of what might need reallocation.

One 2022 budget highlight was the leftovers from the $61.6 billion COVID-19 response fund (CRRF). Most of this has been reallocated already for urgent public health needs.

It had also allocated $10.9 billion over 5 years to the NZ SuperFund. It’s very hard to see that standing uncut this year.

It had allocated $777m in capital allocation for fixing up schools. Whatever is at this moment not signed with construction contracts is going to get reallocated northwards.

One should expect a wholesale reallocation of budget priorities in road and rail transport as well, unless the construction contracts are already signed.

Cabinet has already killed off the unspent portion of the $2.9 billion allocated out of the Climate Emergency Response Fund to help change our cars, and likely it will drain this fund dry to pay for the recovery.

The great big sucking sound you hear is New Zealand’s 3 million people from Hastings northward pulling in every public dollar in the country not yet nailed down with a signed contract.

There will be a question to answer for the rebuild about how much Minister Robertson is prepared to go into debt and how much he will reallocate from existing Departmental expenditure. There’s not much point subsidising the national ballet when your school, town, and hospital care need actual rebuilding.

There will be no tax cuts. There is no electoral mood for tax increases. There will be higher public bills and lower public income. There will be more public debt.

Government has but 3 months in which the Prime Minister and Cabinet have to form, prioritise and cost a complete recovery for New Zealand’s worst disaster since World War 2. This is on top of what was already the Year Of The Long Grind.

The entire budget is going to change. Robertson will propose this as a great field of calm to disguise a very painful public sector reprioritisation, in order that the rebuild gets underway fast and no matter what the national cost.

As with 2020, the 2023 recovery plan and the budget to make it happen will dominate the 2 months to budget and the further 5 months of election 2023.

The plan will be huge, the budgetary changes will be huge, and on both rest the fate of several million New Zealanders trying to recover their lives, and the future political direction of New Zealand through to 2026.

42 comments on “Towards National Recovery ”

  1. Ghostwhowalksnz 1

    I dont think the recovery/rebuild cost is larger than Canterbury earthquakes as claimed. Robertson was talking about a $10-12 bill cost . Canterbury was a $40 bill all up cost covered by insurance and of course not all losses were.

    The electricity network is only minor damage in terms of the whole country , but localised its bad but likely can be mostly fixed for urban areas this week . Longer term resilience will be needed

    Those who think the river flood control is a Three Waters area just dont understand , its 3 waters not 4. Essentially your pluvial suburban floods come into that not the fluvial or river ones.

    Even architects misunderstand what suburban stormwater systems do , at a certain level of rainfall ( above the 5% annual probability, or 1 in 20 yr ) its working properly to run down the street or over your backyard .

    https://www.newsroom.co.nz/lose-that-driveway-and-rethink-the-back-yard

    This is the Auckland Council flood sensitive areas ( 'flood plains' ) design standard

    2.1.1 Activities within flood-sensitive areas
    1.Vulnerable activities in flood-sensitive areas:

    a.finished floor levels of buildings must be at least 500mm above the 1 per cent AEP flood level.

    2.Less vulnerable activities in flood sensitive areas

    a.finished floor levels of buildings must be at least 300mm above the 1 per cent AEP flood level.

    Older suburbs didnt have these standards , maybe not so high but were often built on better land anyway.

    But like the pandemic it seems the media and online are full of instant experts, ignore them

    • Ad 1.1

      Probably too early to claim about the comparative scale of the impact vis a vis Christchurch. But Hipkins is already flagging wholesale scale of budget reallocation this morning.

      Building back any network for greater resilience than current design always requires massive cost increases and redesign.

      Very hard to see flood level design standards staying the same after this, because clearly they didn't work.

      • Ghostwhowalksnz 1.1.1

        For most suburban development , they 'did work'. I noticed the Te Awa more recent subdivision on outskirts of Napier, it appears completely flooded but a closer look at the aerial photo seems to show the streets and front lawns flooded but the houses just above it.

        • Ad 1.1.1.1

          That's selection of one image to make a claim. You know it was bigger than that.

          Just pause before stating that everything in planning worked, and reflect on what didn't.

          • Ghostwhowalksnz 1.1.1.1.1

            Obviously the newer subdivision Te Awa was my focus, but seems the same approach was used in above area from 70s and 80?. Streets and front and back yards flood but house floor levels arent supposed to.

            For many reasons this approach wasnt used at all in the 50s and 60s areas such as Maraenui, Onekawa etc. The Nelson park area created in 20s-30 also has flooding issues

            If you dont want to built on former estuary or land with flooding risk , then Napier would be the same size as Wairoa town. ( 3-4k) Can you see now why your approach is beyond what a reasonable person would suggest.

            And to me clearly you dont understand even the basics but dismissive of 'how its done' and throw slurs rather than asking what the floor levels would rise for future climate change

        • Sanctuary 1.1.1.2

          You bizarre attempt at flannel is complete nonsense.

          I was born and raised in Napier and I have considerable family and social ties to the region. This is a catastrophe; fussing over a photograph with a magnifying glass in order to cherry pick some information to satisfy an anally retentive desire to do nothing about climate change is idiotic.

          What is relevant is a discussion of the barely concealed and systemic culture of cronyism and neo-corruption of local councils in relation to approvals for property development in unsuitable areas.

          The lackadasical attitudes to proper separation of power in decision making and general regard for ethical and proprietary behaviour in local government have evolved in an atmosphere of unaccountable Laissezfaire greed, fed by the economic challenges faced by regional New Zealand, the death of local media oversight and a complete failure of democracy which has allowed local government to be captured by highly sectional class interests who can operate their informal networks of nod and wink favouritism with impunity.

          The upshot is flooding in Napier which, if overlaid with a map of the city prior to the uplift of the 1931 earthquake, accurately mirrors the old lagoons and swamps. Those areas needed draining to become properly dry, and rely on drainage schemes and pumping stations to keep dry. Yet somehow, someone got permission to build a new housing estate in what was, in my youth, a semi-swamp in Te Awa. In an era of climate change and acknowledged sea level rise. Think about that. And one keeps thinking about the poor inhabitants of the flooded developments in Puketapu, off Swamp road… You'd think there was a clue in the name.

          • Shanreagh 1.1.1.2.1

            Totally agree. Born in Wairoa, lived in Napier for 4 years. The building on low lying land and indeed land raised up by the 1931 earthquake has always given me pause.

            This building on silty, unstable land seems to have run amok in the last 10-15 years. When I was last there 4 years ago I was appalled at the building in these areas and especially up the Esk valley which is an area of well known flooding for many, many years.

            I am not sure how this building was allowed to start/continue. Surely Councils look at soil maps, climate maps? Clearly Councils have been chasing the mighty dollar by encouraging more and more people to settle there and to spread out.

            Around the airport they had pumps going 24/7 and always have.

            The upshot is flooding in Napier which, if overlaid with a map of the city prior to the uplift of the 1931 earthquake, accurately mirrors the old lagoons and swamps. Those areas needed draining to become properly dry, and rely on drainage schemes and pumping stations to keep dry.

            Crazy.

            But what do we do?

            I think realistic managed retreats could be a start.
            Looking carefully at soil maps and climate data is a must.
            Perhaps also a careful rereading of various fairy stories and biblical stories could be useful too…you know the ones about building on sand!

            • Sanctuary 1.1.1.2.1.1

              Napier's baby boomer pram suburbs – Onekawa, Pirimai, parts of Taradale, Maraenui – flooded something chronic when they were first built back in the early 1960s. The built the suburbs then put in the big cross country drainage scheme, which was a pretty cack handed way of doing it. When I was a kid we had a flood most years!

              No one was dumb enough to build on even lower lying land, which is why there was a golf course put there.

              • Ghostwhowalksnz

                So your vague ideas from living there as a kid on land development are fine but someone who did it for a living and can give information about how the house floor levels are worked out to be above a possible flood is smeared with an insult.?

                These would be the current rules and they worked in new subdivision I highlighted.

                I dont have specific knowledge river control methods like on those areas like Esk valley where the river left its banks on a large scale, so left that out. Its a different problem with different answers

                Future flood levels will be based on future climate trends, Im not knowledgeable on what those might be but instead of using the current 1% ocurrence or 1 in 100yr use the current 1 in 200yr instead

          • Ghostwhowalksnz 1.1.1.2.2

            You arent the only one who was born ( Wairoa) and grew up in ( Taradale) hawkes Bay

            You clearly have no civil engineering expertise, just another motor mouth who doesnt have expertise to look at photos and work out what has happened.

            Who said we dont have to do anything climate change ? Im saying the design standards we have are working. Others can decide on older areas and their solutions and any changes in future design standards.

            We had these self appointed experts like Sanctuary in this situation during the pandemic, 'because masks or vaccines arent perfect' lets not do anything.

            Youre an uninformed fool and anyone who listens to your spiel is also.

            • Tony Veitch 1.1.1.2.2.1

              When you lack a coherent argument, (apart from subtle covert climate change denial) attack the messenger!

              • Ghostwhowalksnz

                The personal insult came from Sanctuary was defamatory

                ' to satisfy an anally retentive desire to do nothing about climate change is idiotic.'

                Try to read what was actually said first before hoping in.

            • Shanreagh 1.1.1.2.2.2

              So you agree with building on fragile uplifted former swampy seabed soil? All good?

              Engineering can hold everything at bay?

              I don't actually go along with this.

              I feel we will find that ignoring basic geography such as soil and climate data, not to mention EQ data is/will be at our cost.

              It is much the same scenario as is playing out in Auckland where we have played fast & loose on flood plains, on steeper hilly unstable country.

              Not every single piece of land is able to be build on and not every single piece of land ought to be built on.

              As I said I was truly appalled when I saw the urban sprawl of Napier when I went back 4 years ago…….

              • Ghostwhowalksnz

                All of Napier apart from small hill suburbs ( landslide risk) is on uplifted land. So thats 50k people that already live on it

                The railway line was the edge of the original shingle bank and ground just below Bluff Hill.

                Most your claims are wrong too as you dont consider the drainage works undertaken , including diverting the river away.

                Think of the Netherlands my friend

                • Incognito

                  Think of the Netherlands my friend

                  Nothing came to [my] mind instantly so I looked it up, but couldn’t really find much on Wikipedia either!? Unless you mean dikes

                  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flood_control_in_the_Netherlands#Control_of_river_floods

                • Shanreagh

                  I am well aware of where the uplifted land is, where Bluff Hill is etc.

                  My roots are deep into HB.

                  My view is that we do not need to spread out ie sprawl.

                  Where the choice is between intensification and building on former salt a sensible idea would be intensification.

                  The pictures you have shown with the roads in the new subdivisions flooded bears out that roads can act as rivers, harbour all sorts of germs from mixed stormwater and sewage etc.

                  I am sure that Insurance Companies will see this as flood prone land and they would be right.

                  What is the problem with a managed retreat, better intensification. So a city with a smaller footprint but with houses etc on the more stable areas?

                  Why do we want to be the Netherlands of the south? If we do want to aim for flooded areas why not aim to be like Venice – the gondolas are special, the food is better, the gondoliers sing while they work….

                  Reading Incognito’s link I find the last paragraph is telling
                  ‘Global warming in the 21st century might result in a rise in sea level which could overwhelm the measures the Netherlands has taken to control floods. The Room for the River project allows for periodic flooding of indefensible lands. In such regions residents have been removed to higher ground, some of which has been raised above anticipated flood levels’

                  Venice is suffering from sea level rises and sinking

                  Managed retreat plus ‘Spongy cities’ seem to offer our best bet
                  https://climatechampions.unfccc.int/what-are-sponge-cities-and-how-can-they-prevent-floods/

                  https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/the-front-page-sponge-cities-could-this-approach-help-nz-weather-climate-change/ZQ246RZXLVDBDNV2M7SZ36JY3Y/

            • Shanreagh 1.1.1.2.2.3

              I thought we were supposed to be adults and able to discuss things.

              I am reporting your last sentence.

  2. lprent 2

    What is also clear is that the EQC levy rates need to increase. They were in 2022/3 budgeted to be

    Toka Tū Ake levies: $597 million

    But they started from a negative retained earnings of 1,686,928 million when you include a book-keeping capitalised reverses of 1,500,000 million.

    In other words EQC was effectively broke outside of current revenues. The fund still hasn't recovered from the ChCh earthquakes.

    The fund should have raised levies after 2011 a lot faster than they actually did, with the significant raises only arriving in 2019 and 2022 after a review of EQC in 2018 by Dame Silvia Cartwright.

    Basically National were doing their usual short-term thinking (now so well epitomised by Luxon) after the ChCh earthquakes and not funding the EQC. So it will be somewhat useless as a buffer against the household and businesses insurance costs this time around.

    • Ghostwhowalksnz 2.1

      Agree with that . But EQC pays considerable yearly premiums to 'reinsure' for the big disasters ( worth some billions) and also pays a lump sum ($20 mill ?)to Treasury yearly for the Government guarantee side – so its a form of reinsurance of last resort.

      • lprent 2.1.1

        The reinsurance will kick in. But it doesn't look to me like it will be adequate either for private insurance or government backed.

        A major issue is that the cost of property and the building material has been escalating much faster than the premiums. They only just raised the max residential EQC cover to 300k.

        Which is about half of the price of my one bedroom Auckland apartment, about a third of the price of virtually all housing I seriously looked at last year, and a quarter of the price of any new house or apartment with more than one bedroom.

        20 million seems rather low. 20 rebuilds a year?

        • Ghostwhowalksnz 2.1.1.1

          The EQC cap is only a floor after which the private insurance kicks in ( what you must have to get EQC anyway )

          So your house or flat that is worth double -triple that in Auckland is covered up to the level you have as the rebuild value is these days mentioned in policy….and adjusted every year.

          Also remember EQC/private insurance doesnt cover the land value which say for Auckland and most other places is half the total QV value at least that the councils use.

          The purpose is to rebuilt on existing site if its a total loss many will just need major or minor repairs

  3. Sanctuary 3

    The recent flooding in Eskdale echoes the 1938 event, which occurred when sea temperatures around NZ were about 1 degree higher than average. 1938 also saw catastrophic flooding in California, and these 2023 NZ flooding events also have a parallel flooding event in California

    Since we are currently experiencing a "marine heatwave" in NZ with up to 2 degrees above average, it is frightening to imagine these types of cyclonic flood events could become annual events if a 2c sea temperature rise is bedded in.

  4. Ghostwhowalksnz 4

    The above Napier street flooding is an older area thats not too bad but Marewa and Maraenui are 1950s-1960s areas are usually very bad . Thats near the course of the old Tutaekuri river which was relocated from there after the 1931 earthquake.

    This is the newer Te Awa subdivision ( notice the dark roofs !)

    • Shanreagh 4.1

      And the point?

      If it is messing around with building on known areas of instability I would agree with you.

      The spread of cities is always a concern to me. Compact cities have advantages in terms of utilities, public transport etc,

      Coming from HB/Gisborne/East Coast areas I have always been aware of how fragile the place is.

      • Ghostwhowalksnz 4.1.1

        The point is modern designs for subdivisions worked. When you come from HB you might already know there isnt any land available that doesnt have some risk. The whole Meeanee areas is a no go , and great for horticulture as is Pakowhai area.

        • Shanreagh 4.1.1.1

          Do they have to go some where? The modern way is to work within the city boundaries. There is plenty of scope to intensify residential land use closer in to the city centre. Not every body wants or needs to have a house on 1/4 or 1/3 of an acre.

          We know that the places of uplift after the 1931 earthquake should be looked at extremely carefully before building is allowed. At least that is what I thought was happening ……

          We have seemingly uncontrolled urban sprawl now and the rest of NZ will be paying the price either directly through taxes or indirectly through increased insurance premiums.

          Perhaps Napier could strive to be a model for a small scale size constrained city.

          • Ghostwhowalksnz 4.1.1.1.1

            The street in Taradale we lived in now has double the density from infill housing. A few doors away was a small orchard, thats now housing. The vineyards that was once McDonalds now Church Rd have mostly moved further out

            The Te Awa subdivision is much less land per house site compared to the bigger sites originally in Nelson Park, Onekawa etc.

            Higher density housing such as 3-4 levels again is very difficult without razing many areas as infill gets a push back form existing residents. They have a community too

          • weka 4.1.1.1.2

            Not every body wants or needs to have a house on 1/4 or 1/3 of an acre.

            They might not want that area, but they do need it. One of the best ways to mitigate climate and increase resiliency is to relocalise food. That means as much food as possible needs to be grown were it is eaten,

            • No/low transport emissions
            • renegerative ag/hort (rebuild soil fertility so it is sustainable without having to import artificial or organic inputs from other ecosystems
            • less waste
            • increase in biodiversity including essential insects
            • increase in the cooling effect of plants and trees
            • slows and absorbs water in big rain events, leading to less flooding
            • keeps people connected to nature, leading to better mental health, and more care for the land

            The people living on the quarter acre don't have to be the people that grow the food, tend to the plants and animals.

            Meanwhile, if we remove those spaces, and infill them we get these,

            • less food resiliency
            • more heat from concrete
            • more need for transport emissions
            • decrease in biodiversity including essential insects
            • increase in flooding
            • worsening mental health in humans.
            • less care for the earth

            But where will all the people go?! We don't have a shortage of space in NZ. The idea that we have to constrain people in cities is based in old thinking around infrastructure and perpetual growth economies. There are other ways of organising things.

  5. Dean Reynolds 5

    As the article says, net government debt is 21.6% of GDP, an absurdly low figure by OECD standards – Australia's metric is c 48%.

    This means that the government has a huge capacity to borrow long term at low, sovereign rates of interest so that we can actually build back better & not do our usual half arsed, band aid projects, eg. the Chch rebuild.

    It also gives the government an ideal opportunity to reinstate the Ministry of Works & Development as the lead contractor for the rebuilds – parasites like Fulton Hogan can operate as sub contractors to the Ministry.

    • RosieLee 5.1

      Parasites like FH can FO.

    • PsyclingLeft.Always 5.2

      Absolutely ! Get to it Labour !

    • Ghostwhowalksnz 5.3

      Net Debt is the the misleading phrase . Its used by credit rating agencies who calculate [gross debt – government funds] , that for NZ thats ACC, Cullen Fund and EQC ( mostly gone)

      ACC funds ($45 bill) are allocated for their claimants . The Cullen Fund $60 bill is allocated for pre pay superannuation for elderly

      So we can see $105 bill is government wealth funds , but already allocated

      Gross Debt , is what has to be repaid ( often recycled into more borrowing) and its what the taxpayer pays interest on every year

      It seems that NZ Gross debt ( this time last year) is $130 bill and 'total borrowing' ? is $219 bill is not such a little amount that you might think

      link

      • Dean Reynolds 5.3.1

        Ghost, even if gross government debt is 30% of GDP it's still amongst the lowest in the OECD. If government debt rose to 40% of GDP, (still manageable) it would release billions to eliminate poverty, homelessness, infrastucture deficit, etc.

        Obsessing about government debt plays into the hands of the neolibs – they're always screaming their tits off over government debt, in order to keep government as small as possible & look where that's got us over the last 35 years!

        Let's break out of the small minded, small government debt mentality & borrow whatever the hell we need to give evrey kiwi a dignified living standard.

        • Ghostwhowalksnz 5.3.1.1

          You could well be right . But Im wondering about what Treasury calls 'other borrowing' that almost doubles it again

          The problem with using nett debt I have noticed is that as it falls ( during the Key years the stock market boom for NZSF and ACC) many think the government debt was being paid down.

          When Key-English never paid down a cent , gross debt grew from $20 bill to $90 bill and the Key fan club including some senior business types thought it was being paid pack !

          best to ignore the 'nett debt' number completely ( only credit agencies care about it) and it does matter when interest rates rise as its like pensions, beneficiary payments etc an obligation that must be paid . Many other government spending is discretionary

  6. Shanreagh 6

    Obsessing about government debt plays into the hands of the neolibs – they're always screaming their tits off over government debt, in order to keep government as small as possible & look where that's got us over the last 35 years!

    Let's break out of the small minded, small government debt mentality & borrow whatever the hell we need to give evrey kiwi a dignified living standard.

    I agree with these sentiments. I feel we have a bit of room to move to borrow to rebuild back better, with conditions about constraining urban sprawl and intensifying land use on land for housing.

    In the 'olden days' we used to call the huge areas of new subdivisions 'nappy valley', sterile environments without a spread of age groups, where there were no shops, everyone had to have a car or three to survive.

  7. pat 7

    " There is no electoral mood for tax increases."

    That would depend entirely on where they land….as ever. There may well be electoral support for tax increases …provided they impact a minority.

  8. Shanreagh 8

    This report from Stuff, with Carmeron Bagrie, reads very sensibly.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/300809902/rebuilding-from-gabrielle-cheapest-is-not-always-best–do-the-goddamn-thing-properly

    From the article…..

    'Do we have a number on this at the moment? The answer is no. I suspect that is ultimately going to be a very, very big number because I think it's going to be a big catalyst for change,” he says.

    Doing the same thing over and over, expecting a different result is not an option.

    “It's a wake-up call. The old model has just not worked,” he says.

    “We need to learn to manage living with climate change and managing the risks around it. What we're seeing globally is there is a big push now in security – security in things like food, energy, technology.”

    In essence, New Zealand must shift from a ‘she’ll be right, do things just in time’ model, to one that anticipates there will be massive climate events and says “just in case, we're going to do this”.

    • Thinker 8.1

      And I think the talk is that this time, anticipating further climate change in the future, we won't just be cleaning up the mess and filling in the cracks. We will be looking at whether this or that road will flood again each year and maybe it's cheaper to build the road somewhere else.

      Of course, that's the appropriate way to think but it won't come cheap.

      • weka 8.1.1

        more likely is eventually we can't afford to replace or rebuild the road.

        I've been arguing all day with dudes saying we can adapt without mitigation. It's an absolute nonsense.

        • Maurice 8.1.1.1

          But if we do not do any mitigation we will be forced to adapt to existing with the resulting mess ….

          • weka 8.1.1.1.1

            I don't know what that means.

            Adaptation and mitigation are basically the same thing in transition terms. It's not about treating GHGs as some isolate thing, it's about understanding the systems that are driving us towards climate and ecological collapse and changing those while we still have time.

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    This is a guest post by Darren Davis. It originally appeared on his excellent blog, Adventures in Transitland, which we encourage you to check out. It is shared by kind permission. The Northwest has always been Auckland’s public transport Cinderella, rarely invited to the public funding ball. How did ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    16 hours ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Tuesday July 16
    Luxon has told a Financial Times’ correspondent he would openly call out China’s spying in future and does not fear economic retaliation from Aotearoa’s largest trading partner.File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Tuesday, ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    17 hours ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Tuesday, July 16
    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:00 am on Tuesday, July 16 are:PM Christopher Luxon has given a very hawkish interview to the Financial Times-$$$ correspondent in Washington, Demetri Sevastopulu, saying ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    18 hours ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Tuesday, July 16
    Photo by Ryunosuke Kikuno on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 6:00 am are:BNZ released its Performance of Services Index for June, finding that services sector is at its lowest level of activity ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    18 hours ago
  • The second crisis; assumption was the mother
    Late on the night of July 16, 1984, while four National Cabinet Ministers were meeting in the Beehive office of Deputy Prime Minister Jim McLay, plotting the ultimate downfall of outgoing Prime Minister Sir Robert Muldoon, another crisis was building up in another part of the capital. The United States ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    21 hours ago
  • Can we air condition our way out of extreme heat?
    This is a re-post from The Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler Air conditioning was initially a symbol of comfort and wealth, enjoyed by the wealthy in theaters and upscale homes. Over time, as technology advanced and costs decreased, air conditioning became more accessible to the general public. With global warming, though, ...
    1 day ago
  • Review: The Zimiamvian Trilogy, by E.R. Eddison (1935-1958)
    I have reviewed some fairly obscure stuff on this blog. Nineteenth century New Zealand speculative fiction. Forgotten Tolkien adaptations. George MacDonald and William Morris. Last month I took a look at The Worm Ouroboros (1922), by E.R. Eddison, which while not strictly obscure, is also not overly inviting to many ...
    1 day ago
  • Media Link: AVFA on the Trump assassination attempt.
    In this episode of “A View from Afar” Selwyn Manning and I discuss the attempt on Donald Trump’s life and its implications for the US elections. The political darkness grows. ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 day ago
  • Law & Order: National Party 1, Police 0, Public -1
    What happened?Media is reporting that police have lost in their pay dispute with the Coalition Government.Some of you might remember that the police rejected Labour’s previous offer in September, 2023, possibly looking forward to be taken care of by the self-touted ‘Party of Law and Order’ - National.If you look ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    1 day ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the Trump shooting and a potential hike in fees for visiting the doctor
    Having watched Donald Trump systematically exploit social grievances, urge people not to accept his election loss and incite his followers to violent insurrection… it is a bit hard to swallow the media descriptions over the past 24 hours of Trump being a “victim” of violence. More like a case of ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Monday July 15
    The exploitation of workers on the national fibre broadband rollout highlights once again the dark underbelly of our ‘churn and burn’ economy. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy today are:An extraordinary Steve Kilgallon investigation into ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Monday, July 15
    Photo by Jessica Loaiza on UnsplashTL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last three days to 9:00 am on Monday, July 15 are:Investigation: Immigration NZ refused to prosecute an alleged exploiter despite a mountain of evidence - ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • City Centre Rebuild: How Soon Is Now?
    Patrick Reynolds is deputy chair of the City Centre Advisory Panel and a director of Greater Auckland There is ongoing angst about construction disruption in the city centre. And fair enough: it’s very tough, CRL and other construction has been going on for a very long time. Like the pandemic, ...
    Greater AucklandBy Patrick Reynolds
    2 days ago
  • Peril, dismay, resolution
    This afternoon we rolled into Budapest to bring to a close our ride across Europe. We did 144 km yesterday, severe heat messages coming in from the weather app as we bounced along unformed Hungarian back roads and a road strip strewn with fallen trees from an overnight tornado. Somewhere ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 days ago
  • Bullet the Blue Sky
    In the locust windComes a rattle and humJacob wrestled the angelAnd the angel was overcomeYou plant a demon seedYou raise a flower of fireWe see them burnin' crossesSee the flames, higher and higherBullet the blue skyBullet the blue skyThe indelible images, the soundtrack of America. Guns, assassinations, where-were-you-when moments attached ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Monday, July 15
    TL;DR: The top six announcements, rulings, reports, surveys, statistics and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the three days to 6:00 am on Monday, July 23 are:University of Auckland researcher Ryan Greenaway-McGrevy published an analysis of the impact of Auckland's 2016 zoning reforms.BNZ's latest Performance ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā’s diary for the week to July 23 and beyond
    TL;DR: The six key events to watch in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy in the week to July 23 include:PM Christopher Luxon has returned from a trip to the United States and may hold a post-Cabinet news conference at 4:00 pm today.The BusinessNZ-BNZ PSI survey results for June will be released this ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Was The Assassination Attempt Fake?
    Hi,It’s in incredible photo, and we’re going to be talking about it for a long time:Trump, triumphantly raising his hand in the air after being shot. Photo credit: Evan VucciYou can watch what happened on YouTube in real time, as a 20-year-old from Pennsylvania lets off a series of gunshots ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    2 days ago
  • 40 years ago, inside the crisis that made modern NZ
    It had rained all day in Auckland, and the Metro Theatre in Mangere was steamed up inside as more and more people arrived to celebrate what had once seemed impossible. Sir Robert Muldoon had lost the 1984 election. “Piggy” Muldoon was no more. Such was the desire to get rid ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #28
    A listing of 34 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, July 7, 2024 thru Sat, July 13, 2024. Story of the week It's still early summer in the Northern Hemisphere. The season comes as our first year of 1.5°C warming ...
    2 days ago
  • Unsurprising, but Trump shooting creates opportunity for a surprising response
    I can’t say I’m shocked. As the US news networks offer rolling coverage dissecting the detail of today’s shooting at a Donald Trump rally in Butler, Pennsylvania, and we hear eye-witnesses trying to make sense of their trauma, the most common word being used is shock. And shocking it is. ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    2 days ago
  • Escalation in the States as Trump is shot and his allies capitalize on the moment
    Snapshot summary of the shooting in the States belowAnd a time to remember what Abraham Lincoln once said of the United States of America:We find ourselves in the peaceful possession of the fairest portion of the earth, as regards extent of territory, fertility of soil, and salubrity of climate. We ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    2 days ago
  • Bernie Sanders: Joe Biden for President
    I will do all that I can to see that President Biden is re-elected. Why? Despite my disagreements with him on particular issues, he has been the most effective president in the modern history of our country and is the strongest candidate to defeat Donald Trump — a demagogue and ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    3 days ago
  • Questions from God
    Have you invited God into your online life? Do you have answers for his questions? Did I just assume God’s pronouns?Before this goes any further, or gets too blasphemous, a word of explanation. When I say “God”, I don’t meant your god(s), if you have one/them. The God I speak ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • The politics of money and influence
    Did you know: Four days ago, the CEO of Warner Bros Discovery (WBD), David Zaslav, opined that he didn’t really care who won the US Presidential election, so long as they were M&A and business friendly. Please share my Substack so I can continue my work. Thank you and happy ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    3 days ago
  • Auckland & Transport Minister Simeon Brown's insanity
    Excuse me, but I just don’t feel like being polite today. What is going on with Simeon Brown? I mean, really? After spending valuable Ministerial time, focus, and government resources to overturn tailored speed limits in school and high fatality zones that *checks notes* reduces the risk of deaths and ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    3 days ago
  • Were scientists caught falsifying data in the hacked emails incident dubbed 'climategate'?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by John Mason in collaboration with members from the Gigafact team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Were scientists caught falsifying data in the ...
    3 days ago
  • What Happened to David D'Amato's Millions?
    Today’s podcast episode is for paying Webworm members — and is a conversation seven years in the making. Let me explain.Hi,As I hit “send” on this newsletter, I’m about to play my 2016 documentary Tickled to a theatre full of about 400 Webworm readers in Auckland, New Zealand.And with Tickled ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    3 days ago
  • Voting as a multi-order process of choice.
    Recent elections around the world got me to thinking about voting. At a broad level, voting involves processes and choices. Embedded in both are the logics that go into “sincere” versus “tactical” voting. “Sincere” voting is usually a matter of preferred … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    3 days ago
  • Women in Space.
    Count downThree twoI wonderIf I'll ever see you againI'm 'bout to take offI'm leaving youBut maybeI'll see you around somewhere some placeI just need some spaceA brief reminder that if you’re a Gold Card holder you can subscribe to Nick’s Kōrero for 20% off. You’re also welcome to use this ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • Bernard’s Saturday Soliloquy for the week to July 13
    Auckland waterfront, July. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the week to July 13 are:The National-ACT-NZ First Coalition Government watered down vehicle emissions standards this week, compounding the climate emissions damage from an increasingly ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Dems need to ask the right question about Biden as his age now defines the campaign
    Midway through the news conference that many American political commentators had built up as critical to Joe Biden’s re-election chances, the US president said European leaders are not asking him not to run for a second term, “they’re saying you gotta win”.The problem for Biden and his advisors is that ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    4 days ago
  • Govt flounders while ocean temps soar
    TL;DR : Here’s the top six items of climate news for Aotearoa-NZ this week, as selected by Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer, most of which they discussin the video above. According to experts, the rate of ocean surface warming around New Zealand is “outstripping the global ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Learning From Brexit
    Whether Britain leaving the European Union was right or wrong, good or bad is for the Brits to decide. But there are lessons about international trade to be learned from Brexit, especially as it is very unusual for an economy to break so completely from its major training partner.In Econ101 ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • Bernard’s Chorus for Friday, July 12
    TL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so on the morning of Friday, July 12 are: Read more ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Hot Damn! It's The Soggy Bottom Boys!
    Good morning lovely people, and welcome to another weekly review. One which saw the our Prime Minister in Washington, running around with all the decorum of Augustus Gloop with a golden ticket, seeking photo opportunities with anyone willing to shake his hand.Image: G News.He had his technique down to overcome ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • When an independent expert / advisory group is anything but ..
    OPINION: Yesterday, 1News reported that the Government's "independent" advisory group had recommended Kiwirail offload its ferries to another entity.Except this wasn't entirely new news at all, besides that it came formally from Nicola Willis’s advisory team.TVNZ is under significant cost pressure, and earlier this year, after expressing strong discontent with ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Friday, July 12
    Photo by Alexander Schimmeck on UnsplashTL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 9:00 am on Friday, July 12 are:Scoop: Ministerial group advises KiwiRail no longer run Cook Strait ferries 1News’ Julia RodenNews: ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 12-July-2024
    Kia ora and welcome to another Friday roundup, in which we pull together some of the links and stories that caught our eye this week. Feel free to add more in the comments! The week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Scott delivered a delicious disquisition on donut cities, ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Friday, July 12
    Photo by Dominik Scythe on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, rulings, reports, surveys, statistics and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the day to 6:00 am on Friday, July 11 are:Climate: Transport Minister Simeon Brown said in a release the Government's plan to reverse New ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to July 12
    TL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s climate strategy ‘pamphlet’, its watering down of Clean Car Standards and its general lack of coherence;University of Otago Foreign Relations Professor ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Casey Costello strikes again
    Summary: A track record of deception is becoming evident in the Government’s Coalition alliance. Ministers across all parties have been found to either lie without contrite, and/or act unlawfully and unreasonably. The rails are coming off quicker than a marshmallow induced fantasy train ride as the conductors throw caution to ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #28 2024
    Open access notables Antarctic Bottom Water Warming, Freshening, and Contraction in the Eastern Bellingshausen Basin, Johnson et al., Geophysical Research Letters Cold winds blowing over polynyas (areas of ice-free water) on the Antarctic continental shelf create sea ice, forming very cold and somewhat salty, hence very dense, waters. These dense ...
    5 days ago
  • We're back! Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live
    Photo by Mathias Elle on UnsplashWe’re back after a three-week mid-winter break. I needed a rest, but back into it. We’re still with the ‘new’ day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: National’s gas fantasy
    Yesterday the government released the advice on its proposal to repeal the offshore fossil gas exploration ban, including a Climate Implications of Policy Assessment statement, Cabinet paper, and Regulatory Impact Statement. I spent some time looking at these last night, and the short version is that the government's plan is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A criminal minister
    RNZ reports that cancer minister Casey Costello has been reprimanded and forced to apologise by the Ombudsman for acting "contrary to law" in her handling of an OIA request: Associate Health Minister Casey Costello has been severely reprimanded by the Chief Ombudsman and forced to apologise for trying to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Luxon in the NATO pressure cooker
    New Zealand is one of six countries invited as onlookers to this week’s NATO summit in Washington. As such, PM Christopher Luxon will be made aware of the pressure on the 32 NATO member states (a) to increase their Defence spending (b) to become less militarily dependent on the US ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    6 days ago
  • Bernard’s Dawn Chorus for Thursday July 11
    TL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so on the morning of July 11 are:Climate: Climate Change Minister Simon Watts issued the National-ACT-NZ First Coalition Government’s climate strategy yesterday, including a three-page document with five bullet ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • By George! Splendid streets take shape down south
    The revitalisation of Auckland city centre, especially around Wynyard Quarter, Te Komititanga, and Queen Street, is top of mind for Greater Auckland readers – but other cities around Aotearoa New Zealandare installing people-friendly streets. This guest post by Jessica de Heij, who grew up in the Netherlands and is an ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    6 days ago
  • Bernard's Pick 'n' Mix for Thursday, July 11
    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 7:30 am on July 11 are:Scoop: NZ First Minister acted 'contrary to law’. Casey Costello has been severely reprimanded by the Chief Ombudsman and forced ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Thursday, July 11
    TL;DR: The top six announcements, rulings, reports, surveys, statistics and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the day to 6:00 am on Thursday, July 11 are:Economy: Te Pūtea Matua The Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) announced its Monetary Policy Committee decided to hold the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Farmers’ revenge meets Green resistance
    If there was one issue that united farmers in opposition to the Labour Government, it was the battle of the waterways between farmers and Environment Minister David Parker. Parker won the first round with his 2020 National Policy Standard on Freshwater Management (NPSFM) which imposed tough new standards on waterways ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • Personal Reflections: 10th July
    Please note: This is a personal reflection and does not refer to politics. These entries are not sent to subscribers.Text within this block will maintain its original spacing when publishedHubris and Pride Out of the fire and into the frying pan? Swimming with the big sharks Tonight, I am excited. ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • Oh Vienna
    Nothing can warm your heart like the sight of your daughter stepping off a train. Mary-Margaret arrived on Saturday to ride with us to Vienna.You know your way around a bike? the guy at the hire shop asks her. Yep. She’s ridden them on rail trails, Auckland’s mean streets, commutes ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: New Zealand forges deeper ties with NATO
    Christopher Luxon is finding his foreign policy feet. Now eight months into the job, New Zealand’s Prime Minister is in Washington DC this week to attend the NATO summit. It is the third year in a row that Wellington has been invited to the annual gathering of the North Atlantic ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: National’s carbon capture fantasy
    As the climate crisis has grown worse, the tactics of the polluting industries have shifted. From denying climate change, they then moved on to pushing "carbon capture" - dumping their emissions underground rather than in the atmosphere. It's a PR scam, intended to prolong the life of the industry we ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Harsh Truths.
    The Way We Were: An indelible mark was left upon a whole generation of New Zealanders by the Great Depression and World War II; an impression that not only permitted men and women of all classes and races to perceive the need to work together for the common good, but also ...
    6 days ago
  • Explainer: Simeon Brown's CCUS Announcement
    Sources for the data and research:Peter Milne: Time’s up on Gorgon’s five years of carbon storage failureSimon Holmes a Court: "Does best CCS power station in world provide model for Australia?" Chris Vanderstock: "The truth about Carbon Capture and Storage"   "Sunk Costs": documenting CCS's failure to meet every, single, target, ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • The Kiwirail Interislander saga continues
    This morning, 1 News is reporting that the cancellation of the i-Rex ferries has so far cost taxpayers $484 million.That's almost half a billion dollars. That could probably fund thousands of new doctors, maybe complete a few hospital rebuilds, or how about money for our experienced police so they don’t ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    7 days ago
  • Bernard’s Chorus for Wednesday, July 10
    As foreshadowed in legislation passed quietly under urgency just before Christmas, the Transport Minister has personally watered down standards for car imports in a way expected to add millions of tonnes to our climate emissions Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Christopher Luxon's business acumen
    It’s April, and the relatively new Prime Minister of New Zealand is on his first overseas mission to South East Asia.Christopher Luxon walks into the room. A warm smile on his face. A hand extended to his counterpart.“We are open for business,” he says confidently. “New Zealand is under new ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    7 days ago
  • Meet New Zealand's Russell Brand?
    Hi,There is an all too common story within the guru community, and we see it play out again and again. The end is nearly always the same — a trail of victims and confusion left in the guru’s wake.As seen in the recent case of Russell Brand, the guru simply ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    7 days ago
  • Why is the Government flooring it on unsafe speeds?
    Feedback closes midnight Thursday 11 July, on the draft speed-setting rule. See our previous post on the subject for details, and guidance on having your say. Among other things, it proposes to raise speeds in cities back up to a universal 50km/h (with no option of 30km/h), and will restrict safe ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    7 days ago
  • American Boy
    Take me on a trip, I'd like to go some dayTake me to New York, I'd love to see LAI really want to come kick it with youYou'll be my American boy…Love letters straight from the heart. Hmm, I think that’s a different tune, but that’s where we’ll begin. With ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    7 days ago
  • Bernard's Pick 'n' Mix for Wednesday, July 10
    Photo by Jannis Brandt on UnsplashTL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 7:00 am are:Investigation: Benefitting from the misery of others. Over 40% of emergency housing funding went to a concentrated group ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Wednesday, July 10
    Photo by Mr Cup / Fabien Barral on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the day to 6:30 am on Wednesday, July 10 are:Climate: Minister for Transport Simeon Brown announced changes to the Clean Car Importer Standard that ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • How rural families are saving thousands with electric vehicles
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Daisy Simmons (Photo credit: Automotive Rhythms / CC BY-NC 2.0) Some people thought Juliana Dockery and her husband Sean were being impractical when they bought an electric vehicle in 2022. Why? Like one in five Americans, they live in a rural area ...
    7 days ago
  • Love to complete it all
    Photo credit: Rob DickinsonThis is my wish for you: Comfort on difficult days, smiles when sadness intrudes, rainbows to follow the clouds, laughter to kiss your lips, sunsets to warm your heart, hugs when spirits sag, beauty for your eyes to see, friendships to brighten your being, faith so that ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: What’s left of the Emissions Reduction Plan?
    In 2019, Parliament, in a supposed bipartisan consensus, passed the Zero Carbon Act. The Act established long-term emissions reduction targets, and a cycle of five-yearly budgets and emissions reduction plans to meet them, with monitoring by the independent Climate Change Commission. In theory this was meant to ensure that the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The President They Have Got.
    “This cannot be real life!” Confronted with the choice of recommitting themselves to the myth of Joe Biden, or believing the evidence of their own eyes, those Americans not already committed to Donald Trump will reach out instinctively for the President they wish they had – blind to the President they ...
    1 week ago

  • Experts to advise Minister on Oranga Tamariki
    The Oranga Tamariki Ministerial Advisory Board has been re-established by the Minister for Children, Karen Chhour. “I look forward to working with the new board to continue to ensure Oranga Tamariki and the care and protection system, are entirely child centric,” Minister Chhour says. “The board will provide independent advice ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Expectations set for improved medicines access
    Associate Health Minister David Seymour says he has set clear expectations for Pharmac around delivering the medicines and medical technology that Kiwis need.  “For many New Zealanders, funding for pharmaceuticals is life or death, or the difference between a life of pain and suffering or living freely. New cancer medicines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Regional Development Minister to host summits
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will hold a series of nationwide summits to discuss regional priorities, aspirations and opportunities, with the first kicking off in Nelson on August 12. The 15 summits will facilitate conversations about progressing regional economic growth and opportunities to drive productivity, prosperity and resilience through the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Government delivers new school for Rolleston
    The Coalition Government is addressing growing demands on Canterbury’s school network, by delivering a new primary school in Rolleston, Education Minister Erica Stanford says. Within Budget 24’s $400 million investment into school property growth, construction will begin on a new primary school (years 1-8) in Selwyn, Canterbury.  Rolleston South Primary ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • New speed camera signs to improve safety
    The Government is welcoming the rollout of new speed camera signs for fixed speed cameras to encourage drivers to check their speeds, improving road safety and avoiding costly speeding tickets, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “Providing Kiwis with an opportunity to check their speed and slow down in high crash areas ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • NZ, Korea strengthen relationship
    New Zealand and the Republic of Korea continue to strengthen their relationship, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “New Zealand and Korea have a long history – from New Zealand soldiers fighting in the Korean War, through to our strong cooperation today as partners supporting the international rules-based order.    ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Investing for future growth in tourism and hospitality
    The Government is moving forward with recommendations from the Tourism Data Leadership Group, beginning with establishing a Tourism Data Partnership Fund says Tourism and Hospitality Minister Matt Doocey. “The Tourism Data Partnership Fund is funded through the International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) and will provide up to $400,000 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Trade Minister to attend G7 meeting in Italy
    Trade Minister Todd McClay will attend the Group of Seven (G7) Trade Ministers meeting in Reggio Calabria, Italy next week. This is the first time New Zealand has been invited to join the event, which will be attended by some of the world’s largest economies and many of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Ministers reveal consequences for unruly Kāinga Ora tenants
    Ministers are pleased to see Kāinga Ora taking a stronger approach to managing unruly, threatening or abusive tenants, Housing Minister Chris Bishop and Associate Housing Minister Tama Potaka say.    “For far too long, a small number of Kāinga Ora tenants have ridden roughshod over their neighbours because, under Kāinga ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up US visit in California
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has finished a successful four-day visit to the United States with meetings in California on his final day focusing on innovation and investment.  “It has been fantastic to be in San Francisco today seeing first-hand the deepening links between New Zealand and California. “New Zealand company, EV Maritime, ...
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    3 days ago
  • Prime Minister leads Indo-Pacific Four at NATO
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon today chaired a meeting of the Indo-Pacific Four (IP4) countries – Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea and New Zealand. The IP4 met in the context of NATO’s Summit in Washington DC hosted by President Biden. “Prosperity is only possible with security,” Mr Luxon says. “We need ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • District Court judges appointed
    Attorney-General Hon Judith Collins today announced the appointment of three new District Court Judges.   The appointees, who will take up their roles in July and August at the Manukau, Rotorua and Invercargill courts, are:   Matthew Nathan Judge Nathan was admitted to bar in New Zealand in 2021, having previously been ...
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    4 days ago
  • Urgent review into Wairoa flood response begins
    Environment Minister, Penny Simmonds today announced the terms of reference for a rapid review into the Wairoa flood response. “The Wairoa community has raised significant concerns about the management of the Wairoa River bar and the impact this had on flooding of properties in the district,” says Ms Simmonds. “The Government ...
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    5 days ago
  • NZDF’s Red Sea deployment extended
    New Zealand has extended its contribution to the US-led coalition working to uphold maritime security in the Red Sea, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The decision to extend this deployment is reflective of the continued need to partner and act in line with New ...
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    5 days ago
  • Government provides support to tackle tax debt and compliance
    New compliance funding in Budget 2024 will ensure Inland Revenue is better equipped to catch individuals who are evading their tax obligations, Revenue Minister Simon Watts says. “New Zealand’s tax debt had risen to almost $7.4 billion by the end of May, an increase of more than 50 per cent since 2022. ...
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    5 days ago
  • Taking action to reduce road cones
    The Coalition Government is taking action to reduce expenditure on road cones and temporary traffic management (TTM) while maintaining the safety of workers and road users, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  Rolling out a new risk-based approach to TTM that will reduce the number of road cones on our roads.  ...
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    5 days ago
  • Celebrating 100 years of progress
    Te Arawa Lakes Trust centenary celebrations mark a significant milestone for all the important work done for the lakes, the iwi and for the Bay of Plenty region, says Māori Crown Relations: Te Arawhiti and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka. The minister spoke at a commemorative event acknowledging 100 years ...
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    5 days ago
  • Foreign Minister to travel to Korea and Japan
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters will travel to the Republic of Korea and Japan next week.    “New Zealand enjoys warm and enduring relationships with both Korea and Japan. Our relationships with these crucial partners is important for New Zealand’s ongoing prosperity and security,” says Mr Peters.    While in the ...
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    5 days ago
  • Huge opportunity for educators and students as charter school applications open
    Associate Education Minister David Seymour says today is another important step towards establishing charter schools, with the application process officially opening.  “There has already been significant interest from groups and individuals interested in opening new charter schools or converting existing state schools to charter schools,” says Mr Seymour. “There is ...
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    6 days ago
  • Decreasing gas reserves data highlights need to reverse oil and gas exploration ban
    MBIE’s annual Petroleum Reserves report detailing a 20 per cent reduction in New Zealand’s natural gas reserves shows the need to reverse the oil and gas exploration ban, Energy Minister Simeon Brown says.“Figures released by MBIE show that there has been a 20 per cent reduction in New Zealand’s natural ...
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    6 days ago
  • Providers of military assistance to Russia targeted in new sanctions
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced further sanctions as part of the Government’s ongoing response to Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine.    “Russia’s continued illegal war of aggression against Ukraine is a direct and shocking assault on the rules-based order. Our latest round of sanctions targets Russians involved in that ...
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    6 days ago
  • OECD report shows New Zealand is a red tape state
    Minister for Regulation David Seymour says that the OECD Product Market Regulation Indicators (PMRI) released this morning shows why New Zealanders sorely need regulatory reform. “This shocker result should end any and all doubt that the Government must go to war on red tape and regulation,” says Mr Seymour.  “The ...
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    6 days ago
  • Government unveils five-point climate strategy
    The coalition Government is proud to announce the launch of its Climate Strategy, a comprehensive and ambitious plan aimed at reducing the impacts of climate change and preparing for its future effects, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “The Strategy is built on five core pillars and underscores the Government’s ...
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    6 days ago
  • National Bowel Screening Programme reaches 2 million life-saving screening kits
    The National Bowel Screening Programme has reached a significant milestone, with two million home bowel screening kits distributed across the country, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti announced today.   “This programme, which began in 2017, has detected 2,495 cancers as of June 2024. A third of these were at an early ...
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    6 days ago
  • Granny flats popular with all ages
    More than 1,300 people have submitted on the recent proposal to make it easier to build granny flats, RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop and Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk say. “The strong response shows how popular the proposal is and how hungry the public is for common sense changes to make ...
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    7 days ago
  • $25 million boost for conservation
    Toitū te taiao – our environment endures!  New Zealanders will get to enjoy more of our country’s natural beauty including at Cathedral Cove – Mautohe thanks to a $25 million boost for conservation, Conservation Minister Tama Potaka announced today.  “Te taiao (our environment) is critical for the country’s present and ...
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    7 days ago
  • New Zealand increases support for Ukraine
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Foreign Minister Winston Peters have announced a further $16 million of support for Ukraine, as it defends itself against Russia’s illegal invasion. The announcement of further support for Ukraine comes as Prime Minister Luxon attends the NATO Leaders’ Summit in Washington DC. “New Zealand will provide an additional ...
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    7 days ago
  • Country Kindy to remain open
    Associate Education Minister David Seymour says that Country Kindy in Manawatu will be able to remain open, after being granted a stay from the Ministry of Education for 12 weeks. “When I heard of the decision made last week to shut down Country Kindy I was immediately concerned and asked ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government lifts Indonesian trade cooperation
    New export arrangements signed today by New Zealand and Indonesia will boost two-way trade, Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay says. Mr McClay and Dr Sahat Manaor Panggabean, Chairman of the Indonesia Quarantine Authority (IQA), signed an updated cooperation arrangement between New Zealand and Indonesia in Auckland today. “The cooperation arrangement paves the way for New Zealand and Indonesia to boost our $3 billion two-way trade and further ...
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    1 week ago
  • Carbon capture framework to reduce emissions
    A Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage (CCUS) framework has been released by the Coalition Government for consultation, providing an opportunity for industry to reduce net CO2 emissions from gas use and production, Energy Minister Simeon Brown says. “Our Government is committed to reducing red tape and removing barriers to drive investment ...
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    1 week ago
  • Faster consenting with remote inspections
    The Government is progressing a requirement for building consent authorities to use remote inspections as the default approach so building a home is easier and cheaper, Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk says. “Building anything in New Zealand is too expensive and takes too long. Building costs have increased by ...
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    1 week ago
  • Revision programme presented to Parliament
    A new revision programme enabling the Government to continue the progressive revision of Acts in New Zealand has been presented to Parliament, Attorney-General Judith Collins announced today. “Revision targets our older and outdated or much-amended Acts to make them more accessible and readable without changing their substance,” Ms Collins says. ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government aligns Clean Car Importer Standard with Australia to reduce vehicle prices for Kiwis
    The Government will be aligning the Clean Car Importer Standard with Australia in order to provide the vehicle import market with certainty and ease cost of living pressures on Kiwis the next time they need to purchase a vehicle, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“The Government supports the Clean Car Importer ...
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    1 week ago
  • NZQA Board appointments
    Education Minister Erica Stanford has today announced three appointments to the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA). Kevin Jenkins has been appointed as the new Chair of the NZQA Board while Bill Moran MNZM has been appointed as the Deputy Chair, replacing Pania Gray who remains on the Board as a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • More support for Wairoa clean-up
    A further $3 million of funding to Wairoa will allow Wairoa District Council to get on with cleaning up household waste and sediment left by last week’s flooding, Emergency Management and Recovery Minister Mark Mitchell says.  In Budget 24 the Government provided $10 million to the Hawke’s Bay Region to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister thanks outgoing Secretary for Education
    Education Minister Erica Stanford has today thanked the outgoing Secretary for Education. Iona Holsted was appointed in 2016 and has spent eight years in the role after being reappointed in May 2021. Her term comes to an end later this year.  “I acknowledge Iona’s distinguished public service to New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister concludes local government review
    Local Government Minister Simeon Brown has concluded the Future for Local Government Review and confirmed that the Coalition Government will not be responding to the review’s recommendations.“The previous government initiated the review because its Three Waters and resource management reforms would have stripped local government of responsibility for water assets ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Consultation begins on new cancer medicines
    Associate Health Minister for Pharmac David Seymour says today’s announcement that Pharmac is opening consultation on new cancer medicines is great news for Kiwi cancer patients and their families. “As a result of the coalition Government’s $604 million funding boost, consultation is able to start today for the first two ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • 50 years on, Niue and NZ look to the future
    A half-century after pursuing self-government, Niue can count on New Zealand’s steadfast partnership and support, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says. “New Zealand and Niue share a unique bond, forged over 50 years of free association,” Mr Peters says. “We are looking forward to working together to continue advancing Niue’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Upgrading system resulting in faster passport processing
    Acting Internal Affairs Minister David Seymour says wait times for passports are reducing, as the Department of Internal Affairs (the Department) reports the highest ever monthly figure for digital uptake in passport applications.  “As of Friday 5 July, the passport application queue has reduced by 34.4 per cent - a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago

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