The Insurance Council of New ZealandTe Kāhui Inihua o Aotearoa (ICNZ) welcomes the introduction of the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Amendment Bill. The Bill includes provisions to open the door to greatly improved information on natural hazards, such as flood risk and coastal erosion, for property owners and potential buyers. Importantly, the Bill specifically allows for projected climate impacts to be considered. 

“We have a real and ongoing problem with building and maintaining assets in dumb places that stand to cost many property owners and ratepayers dear as the impacts and costs of climate change continue to worsen,” said ICNZ Chief Executive, Tim Grafton. “Clearer requirements for councils around the inclusion of natural hazard information on land information memorandums (LIMs) and protection for them in providing that information are long overdue.”

“Individuals, communities, councils and lenders all need to know the long-term hazard outlook when considering committing to long term borrowing, investment and maintenance obligations.”

This should cover at least the next 50 years where such information is available. In particular, people and lenders should have access to, and look carefully at, all available hazard information when considering applying for, or writing, a mortgage,” said Tim.

“Beyond the enhanced provision of hazard information, it is also long past time that councils do more to simply stop development in high hazard zones, particularly those identified around our coast and in known flood zones.”

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