What Council is doing about Climate Change

Responding to climate change means reducing greenhouse gas emissions as well as adapting to the expected impacts that will result from a changing climate.

Nelson City Council is a signatory to the Local Government Climate Change Declaration and the Local Government Leaders’ Position Statement on Climate Change. The declaration outlines our commitment to developing and implementing an ambitious action plan that reduces greenhouse gas emissions and supports resilience within council and our community.

Climate Change Champion

Dr Chris Cameron is the Council’s Climate Change Champion. Chris has vast experience in climate change, across science, policy and implementation. He has a PhD in climate science, and has led climate change work at several other councils. He has previously worked at Ministry for the Environment, where he was part of NZ delegations to UNFCCC climate meetings in 2007 and 2008, including leading negotiations on matters related to technical and reporting aspects.

Climate Forum

Council has allocated funding to assist with the work of a community-led Climate Forum. The Nelson Tasman Climate Forum was launched in February 2020, and with over 350 people in attendance.  A great deal of work by the Forum has taken place since this time, with it now consisting of around 18 sub-groups (or topic areas). The Forum is working on a strategy containing some clear direction and a series of actions to reduce emissions and increase resilience to climate impacts. 

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Council will continue to investigate actions to reduce emissions, develop a work programme for climate adaption, and consider ways to limit or remove pressure on natural ecosystems affected by climate change, for example, by:

  • Reviewing our Resource Management Act policies and plans to produce a new unitary plan – the draft Whakamahere Whakatū Nelson Plan
  • Working with the community to better understand and plan for future hazards related to climate change and sea level rise, such as river flooding, coastal erosion and coastal inundation (flooding) using the approach recommended by the Ministry for the Environment.
  • See our Coastal Hazards webpage to help us find out more about what is happening along our coasts.
  • Continuing to diversify and enhance transport options by enabling, promoting and supporting active transport (in particular cycling), as well as ride-sharing, use of public transport, and investigating the adoption of new technologies, where safe and effective.  
  • Enabling teachers and learners to educate and prepare for the future by participating in the Enviroschools programme
  • Participating in CEMARS (Certified Emissions Measurement and Reduction Scheme) to measure and reduce emissions related to Council activities
  • Reducing carbon emissions through activities such as introducing electric vehicles to the Council fleet, and programmes to reduce the volume of organic waste going to landfill
  • Protecting and building resilience of our natural environment and biodiversity through Nelson Nature and the Healthy Streams programme
  • Providing Eco Design advice to residents to help reduce energy usage
  • Nelson City Council and Tasman District Council collaborated to create a joint Future Development Strategy to manage urban growth over the next 30 years.
  • Working in collaboration with Wakatu Incorporation to develop connections with Denmark, who are well known for their innovative climate change responses.

Links of Interest