Who moves and who pays? Managed retreat is hard, but lessons from the past can guide us

Sat, 25 Feb 2023 14:35:22 +1100

Andrew Pam <xanni [at] glasswings.com.au>

Andrew Pam

"As the cleanup from the Auckland floods continues, and Cyclone Gabrielle hits
already saturated parts of the North Island, many people and communities are
wondering about the future of their cherished places and homes.

The increasing severity of climate-related disasters, and the vulnerability of
ageing stormwater infrastructure, are now tangible and visible realities.

With this, the term “managed retreat” has gone from being a specialist one to
something discussed much more widely. And with the growing prospect of repeat
events, the urgent need for a national managed retreat framework is very much
in focus.

The government’s first National Adaptation Plan, released in August 2022, was
lauded as a welcome development in responding to climate change. Central to the
plan is the role of managed retreat – the strategic relocation of people,
communities, taonga and assets.

As some commentators have pointed out, however, there is an absence of detail
in the plan on the enduring questions of who should move, how they will move,
and who pays."

       *** Xanni ***
mailto:xanni@xanadu.net               Andrew Pam
http://xanadu.com.au/                 Chief Scientist, Xanadu
https://glasswings.com.au/            Partner, Glass Wings
https://sericyb.com.au/               Manager, Serious Cybernetics

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