Buller District Council

Council’s Submission to Climate Change Commission forging path ahead

6th April, 2021

Buller District Council’s submission to the Climate Change Commission’s draft proposal’s requests technical support and funding as well as presenting solutions to help the Buller District adapt to climate change.

Councillor Phil Rutherford says: “The document presents a stock take of the current situation and the unarguable changes ahead. It clearly addresses them specifically in context to Buller District and details the support we need to transition to what looms on the horizon.”

The document considers the specific challenges Buller faces with farming and mining being two of the biggest economic drivers in the district. It also addresses challenges posed by communities and infrastructure exposed to the sea and the impacts of erosion and the threat of frequent weather events.

The report also highlights the socio-economic impact that transitioning to a low emission economy will have on the many households in Buller that heat their homes with coal.

Councillor Rutherford says: “We took into account the impact on employment when farming and mining have to comply with tighter emission reducing regulations.”

The Buller District has a high reliance on rates and a small ratepayer base. This is one reason why Councillor Rutherford believes it is necessary for central government to provide funding to enable transition to new goals and regulations, and to establish new industries.

“Council wants to investigate the opportunity of glasshouse-based horticulture along with the possibility of becoming a hub for emerging technologies, to do this we need assistance from central government”.

In its submission, Council seeks a fair and equitable transition to new emission targets so that the district is not burdened disproportionally. This request considers the high reliance on mining and agriculture which will particularly be impacted by tighter emission regulations.

The submission sends a clear message – Buller District Council is aware of the risks and changes climate change will bring to the district. And it presents forward-thinking suggestions to address the associated challenges.

The Climate Change Commission will review the submissions it has received and report to central government on the 31 May.  Government will advise its decisions in regard to the Commission’s advice in December 2021.

The full submission can be accessed on Councils’ website https://bullerdc.govt.nz/ProactiveReleaseofInformation .


For more information please contact:
Councillor Phil Rutherford
Buller District Council


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