Overview of the state of land use planning for natural hazards in New Zealand

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Saunders, W.S.A.; Grace, E.S.; Beban, J.G. 2014 Overview of the state of land use planning for natural hazards in New Zealand. Lower Hutt, N.Z.: GNS Science. GNS Science report 2014/63 30 p.

Abstract: The purpose of this report is to summarise the results of three studies on the state of natural hazards planning in New Zealand (Saunders, Beban, & Coomer, 2014a, 2014b; Saunders, Grace, & Beban, 2014 (in prep),). Primarily a desk top study, the project focused on the content of regional policy statements (RPS), unitary plans, district plans, and Civil Defence Emergency Management (CDEM) group plans – it has not assessed how these plans are implemented. This desk top study was complemented with a survey of the capability and capacity of councils for natural hazard planning. The findings of the three studies can be used to answer one key question: what is the state of planning for natural hazards in New Zealand? The answer is somewhat complicated – as to be expected from analysing 99 plans. Not-withstanding, the state of planning for natural hazards in New Zealand appears to be improving between first and second generation plans. As natural hazards knowledge and awareness increases, information sharing improves, planning for risk continues to grow momentum, and new frameworks are developed and implemented, this trend should continue. However, there is still significant room for improving hazard provisions for some councils. Following the Introduction, Sections 2 to 4 of this report provide a summary of findings produced from the analysis of plans, good practice plan examples and an assessment of council capability and capacity. Section 5 discusses the linkages between the findings, and explores the relationship between plan quality, good practice, and resourcing. Section 6 provides a summary and final conclusions in respect to the state of natural hazards planning in New Zealand. This includes recommendations for improving planning practice and opportunities for further research. (auth)