CED regions in New Zealand

Below are the New Zealand local council regions that have declared a Climate Emergency, in chronological order. Click the “motion text” links to see details of the motions they passed.

16 May 2019, Canterbury Regional Council, New Zealand, population: 624,000

First in NZ to declare a Climate Emergency.
motion text


Council news article with motion text is here.
Excerpt:

Environment Canterbury declares a climate emergency and commits to continue to:
– robustly and visibly incorporate climate change considerations into Council work programmes and decisions
– provide strong local government leadership in the face of climate change, including working with regional partners to ensure a collaborative response
– advocate strongly for greater Central Government leadership and action on climate change
– increase the visibility of our climate change work
– lead by example in monitoring and reducing Council’s greenhouse gas emissions.

16 May 2019, Nelson City Council, New Zealand, population: 51,900

Second city in New Zealand (just hours after the first) to declare a Climate Emergency.
PROGRESS SO FAR:
8 June 2019: “The council said it would allocate $254,500 of operational funding in its annual plan to establish a climate forum, a climate taskforce and appoint a new climate champion. It also decided to create a new reserve of $500,000.

“Should a suitable initiative or idea come through from the public to instigate action on climate change, then that reserve can be drawn on following approval by council,” it said.”
motion text


Minutes item 6 are here.
Excerpt:

That the Council

1. Receives the report Declaration of Climate Emergency (R10219) and its attachment (A2191324); and

2. Declares a climate emergency (A2191324); and

3. Requests the Chief Executive to develop a programme of Council actions that will support the aforementioned declaration and that this be included the Council Annual Plan Deliberations report.

23 May 2019, Christchurch City Council, New Zealand, population: 381,500

Declared a Climate and Ecological Emergency
motion text


Minutes Item 18 is here.
Excerpt:

That the Council resolves that:

1. Christchurch joins with other cities and districts in declaring a global climate and ecological emergency, in order to:

a. raise public awareness about the urgency of the need for everyone to take action to reduce carbon emissions to zero, and to highlight the importance of engaging our communities to better prepare ourselves for the impacts of climate change, including undertaking mitigation measures and co-creating adaptive planning tools.

b. acknowledge the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Special Report that warming beyond 1.5 degrees will be harmful to people and the life supporting systems of the planet, and noting that the transformational changes that will be required to achieve carbon neutrality are not yet evident, we also acknowledge:

i. the urgency of taking climate action, which includes meeting our target for net carbon neutrality by 2030 as a Council, and net carbon neutrality for the city by a target date to be consulted on and affirmed on a city and district wide basis;

ii. the need for democratic participation in establishing these targets and mechanisms for achieving them, to ensure a just and equitable transition;

iii. the need for the city to participate in global city networks and other major NZ cities to ensure the sharing of ideas and solutions, as well as reinforcing the responsibility of cities for taking action.

2. To request Council Officers to provide a workshop on progress towards the updated Climate Strategy, including:

• An assessment of the Wellbeing Budget in relation to our commitment to climate change leadership and our other strategic directions, and

• A comprehensive overview of all the initiatives that are required to contribute to climate change leadership, recognising that achieving a city and district-wide impact may require stronger coalitions with other councils, agencies, businesses and citizens,

• An analysis of the recommendations that have come forward from Students Strike 4 Climate, Extinction Rebellion and other groups that have made representations to Council.

· with a view to developing an appropriate strategic framework for the ongoing development of our planning instruments – including the Christchurch District Plan, the Long-term Plan, including the Financial Strategy and the Infrastructure Strategy, and the relevant greater Christchurch and regional plans, including the Regional Public Transport Plan and the Greater Christchurch Resilience Plan – to be reported back to Council by the end of 2019, noting that this will need to be consulted with our communities and formally adopted by the incoming Council later in the year.

3. Climate change leadership and safe and sustainable water should be the overarching objectives of our key Strategic Documents including, but not limited to the Long Term Plan/Infrastructure and Finance Strategies.

4. Questions to be developed for inclusion in the annual resident’s survey on action that is taken on climate change at the community level as well as at the city level.

5. To request further advice from Council Officers based on the deputation and requests presented by Extinction Rebellion, to be reported to the June and July 2019 Innovation and Sustainable Development Meetings.

6. The Christchurch City Council approach the local councils and the regional council in Canterbury region regarding potential local and regional initiatives on climate and ecological change.

7. To request identification of high level climate change, ecological and sustainability indicators so that progress towards net carbon neutrality can be seen by all.

23 May 2019, Kapiti Coast District Council, New Zealand, population: 53,200

Declared a Climate Emergency and set a 2025 carbon neutral target date
motion text


Minutes P9 are here.
Excerpt:

Motion
That this council, noting that our communities are facing increasingly significant and prohibitive costs to manage the impacts of climate change:
– Declares a climate change emergency.
– Calls on GWRC to increase the resources allocated to its coastal adaptation climate change program specifically towards the community-led coastal adaptation project for the 2019/20 financial year and beyond.
– Calls on Central Government to create a ‘National Climate Change Adaptation Fund’ as recommended by Local Government New Zealand.

11 June 2019, Auckland City Council, New Zealand, population 1,628,900

Unanimously declared a Climate Emergency and released their draft Action Plan
PROGRESS SO FAR
17 January 2020: Established the Environment and Climate Change Committee to lead the council’s response to the climate emergency and announced policies for reducing carbon emissions from transport
PROGRESS SO FAR
4 November 2019: Established new Environment and Climate Change committee
motion text


Minutes Item 9 are here.

That the Environment and Community Committee:
a) note that Auckland Council has long acknowledged the importance of and urgent need to address climate change for the benefit of current and future generations
b) note that Auckland Council already demonstrates leadership in the face of climate change, including incorporating climate change considerations into council’s work programmes and decisions; working with regional partners to ensure a collaborative response; advocating and engaging with central government; and leading by example in reducing our in-house emissions
c) note that climate change does not satisfy the definition of an “emergency” under the Civil Defence and Emergency Management Act 2002, and that a declaration of a “climate emergency” has no other inherent statutory or legal implications; however, such a declaration may further highlight Auckland Council’s belief in the importance and urgency of addressing climate change
d) note that further information on Auckland Council’s recent and planned climate change response is provided in the attachments to this report
e) affirm the following statement:
“Auckland Council recognises the importance of and urgent need to address climate change for the benefit of current and future generations:
· the science is irrefutable – climate change is already impacting ecosystems and communities around the world, with increasingly frequent and severe storms, floods and droughts; melting polar ice sheets; sea level rise and coastal inundation and erosion; and impacts on biodiversity including species loss and extinction.
· the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Special Report in October 2018 stated that we have twelve years to turn greenhouse gas emissions around to limit global warming to the Paris Agreement target of 1.5-degrees, or face an uncertain future. This requires ‘rapid and far-reaching transitions in energy, land, urban and infrastructure (including transport and buildings), and industrial systems’ (www.ipcc.ch/site/assets/uploads/sites/2/2018/07/sr15_headline_statements.pdf)
· everyone has a role to play in delivering the change required.

As such, Auckland Council declares a climate emergency and commits to:
· continue to robustly and visibly incorporate climate change considerations, in practical terms, into council work programmes and decisions
· continue to provide strong local government leadership in the face of climate change, including working with local and central government partners to ensure a collaborative response
· continue to advocate strongly for greater central government leadership and action on climate change
· continue to increase the visibility of our climate change work
· continue to lead by example in monitoring and reducing council’s greenhouse gas emissions
· include climate change impact statements on all committee reports
· requesting staff of council-controlled organisations to include climate change impact statements in their committee reports
CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY

20 June 2019, Wellington City Council, New Zealand, population 216,300

Declared a Climate and Ecological Emergency with all except one Councillor voting in favour
motion text


Minutes P9 are here.

Resolved
That the City Strategy Committee:
A. Agrees to declare an ecological and climate emergency to guide Te Atakura – First to Zero with the following words:
Te wero Toitū te marae a Tāne Toitū te marae a Tangaroa Toitū te iwi Ngāi Tātou o Pōneke, me noho ngātahi Whāia te aratika
Our challenge
Protect and enhance the realms of the Land and the Waters, and they will sustain and strengthen the People. People of Wellington, together we decide our way forward. Wellington City Council joins hundreds of other cities around in the world in declaring a State of Climate and Ecological Emergency accepting local and international scientific evidence that there remains around a decade to take urgent action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in order to avoid disastrous consequences.

The Council believes that ecological and social systems must survive for the benefit of present and future generations as well as other species. We also recognise that the breakdown of the climate is already damaging fragile ecosystems with significant economic, social and environmental consequences including more severe storms, sea level rise, loss of biodiversity and negative impacts on human health.
Wellington City Council commits to the following:
1. Providing strong and effective leadership based on the best scientific knowledge in partnership with tangata whenua and mana whenua and with ongoing collaboration and consultation with the scientific community, business, citizen groups, central government, government agencies, and communities on climate change;
2. Adopting and implementing Te AtakuraFirst to Zero which aims to ensure that Wellington is a net zero emission city by 2050 with a commitment to making the most significant cuts in the first 10 years.
3. Significantly reducing fossil fuel use by 2030 as well as finding solutions to reduce or capture more methane;
4. Working with relevant Wellington regional bodies to achieve the above aims;
5. Developing an accountability framework to measure the impact of our actions to achieve net zero emissions and to halt the decline of our ecosystems, especially over the next decade.

25 June 2019, Dunedin City Council, New Zealand, population 130,700

Declared a Climate Emergency
motion text


Minutes Item 17 are here.

Moved (Cr Aaron Hawkins/Cr Marie Laufiso):
That the Council:
a) Declares a Climate Emergency.
b) Acknowledge that all levels of central government need to act.
c) Agrees that a business as usual transition to a low carbon economy is inadequate.
d) Develops a Climate Emergency Plan that:
i) Sets a city target of net zero carbon by 2030, with interim milestones;
ii) Quantifies the actions available to Council, community and central government to ensure these targets are met.

26 June 2019, Hawke’s Bay Regional Council, New Zealand, population 165,900

Declared a Climate Emergency. The Council media release is here.
motion text


Minutes Item 14 are here.
Excerpt:

Resolutions
That Hawke’s Bay Regional Council:
1. Receives and notes the “Report and Recommendations from the Environment and Services Committee”
2. Agrees that the decisions to be made are not significant under the criteria contained in Council’s adopted Significance and Engagement Policy, and that Council can exercise its discretion and make decisions on these matters without conferring directly with the community and persons likely to be affected by or to have an interest in the decisions.

Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation – A Regional Response
3. Declares a climate emergency, recognising global warming to be an urgent and pervasive threat to human and ecological wellbeing.
4. Commits to providing an annual progress report in relation to its existing programme of work and additional future programmes relating to climate change.
5. Includes climate change as a primary factor for consideration in its decision making processes.
6. Commits to developing a comprehensive programme of work in response to climate change, including regional leadership for climate change awareness and action.
7. Requests staff develop a programme of community engagement on climate change mitigation and adaptation.
8. Directs the Chief Executive to further reduce the Council’s greenhouse gas emissions and report annually on progress within the annual progress report.
9. Advocates to the Ministry for the Environment to include greenhouse gas emissions in the consenting process under the Resource Management Act.
10. Makes further submissions, as appropriate, to the Zero Carbon Bill.

Flaxmere Solar Farm
11. Agrees in principle, and subject to acceptance by the Regional Council of a full business case and debt security being procured, to extend lending to ‘Power To The People’, to achieve the objectives of the Heatsmart and the Sustainable Homes programmes.

26 June 2019, Porirua City Council, New Zealand, population 56,700

Declared a Climate Emergency
motion text


Minutes Item 11.3 are here.

That the Council:
1. Support Porirua’s Rangatahi and join with other cities and districts in declaring a climate emergency.
2. Note that Porirua City Council is currently working on a climate change strategy and will consider further policies and initiatives as part of the 2021-2024 Long-term Plan.

27 June 2019, Queenstown Lakes District Council, New Zealand, population 39,100

Declared a Climate and Ecological Emergency. Video of motion and vote can be seen at the bottom of this article
motion text


Minutes P5 are here.

1. On the motion of the Mayor and Councillor McRobie it was resolved that the Council note the contents of this report.
2. On the motion of the Mayor and Councillor MacDonald it was resolved that the Council approve the draft Queenstown Lakes District Climate Action Plan for community feedback in July/August 2019, subject to any minor amendments.
3. On the motion of the Mayor and Councillor Smith it was resolved that the Council acknowledges the views of the Extinction Rebellion Queenstown Lakes group and agrees to declare a climate and ecological emergency in the Queenstown Lakes District.

27 June 2019, Hutt City Council, New Zealand, population 105,900

Declared a Climate Emergency
motion text


Minutes Item 7 are here.
The motion:

Resolved: (Mayor Wallace/Cr Barratt) Minute No. C 19304(2)
“That Council:
(i) notes and receives the report;
(ii) notes that Council has started work on Climate Change issues;
(iii) notes a comprehensive report including advice on setting ambitious targets will be presented to the Policy and Regulatory Committee in September on Council’s organisational emissions and a range of initiatives and projects underway;
(iv) notes scoping for the development of a Hutt City Zero Carbon Plan is underway;
(v) notes Hutt City Council is working with colleagues in the region through the Wellington Region Climate Change Working Group;
(vi) declares a Climate Change Emergency recognising that Lower Hutt City will be affected by Climate Change; and
(vii) instructs the Chief Executive to look at and consider any additional funding requirement and targets as part of next year’s Council Long Term Plan to ensure a focus remains on this issue and to achieve targets that Council has set.”

27 June 2019, Bay of Plenty Regional Council, New Zealand, population 305,700

Declared a Climate Emergency
motion text


Minutes can be downloaded here. Blog post by Councillor Morris (confirming declaration) is here.
Motion text that was passed:

That the Regional Council:

1 Receives the report, “Recommendation to Council from the Regional Direction and Delivery Committee: Declaration on Climate Emergency and Establishment of a Reserve for Future Use as a Climate Change Fund”;

2 In considering the Regional Direction and Delivery Committee recommendations, adopts the following:

a. Declares a climate change emergency and will work with the community on transitioning to a low carbon future and adapting to our changed climate;

b. Includes a standing item on all Council agendas that all agenda items have a section on Climate Change Implications;

c. Notes that Council has identified climate change as a key strategic issue and is already taking action on climate change in terms of both mitigation and adaptation, including through the Climate Change Action Plan.

Thompson/Thurston

CARRIED

25 July 2019, Whangarei District Council, New Zealand, population 58,800

Declared a Climate Emergency
motion text


Minutes Item 6 are here.
The motion:

Declaration of a Climate Change Emergency
Moved By Cr Tricia Cutforth
Seconded By Cr Crichton Christie
That the Council
1.Receives the agenda report on Declaration of a Climate Change Emergency.
2.Declares a climate change emergency for the Whangarei District.
3.Directs the Chief Executive to have staff develop an action plan to support the declaration of a climatechange emergency and report back to Council.
4.Authorises the Chief Executive to make any minor amendments to text and graphics of the declaration (Attachment 1).

21 August 2019, Greater Wellington Regional Council, New Zealand, population 521,500

Declared a Climate Emergency and set a 2030 carbon neutral target date
motion text


Minutes Item 6 are here.

That the Council:
1.Receives the report.
2.Notes the content of the report.
3.Acknowledges that climate change and sea level rise are already seriously impacting fragile eco systems and communities around the world, including in the Wellington Region, with increasingly frequent and severe storms, floods and droughts, melting polar ice sheets, sea level rise and coastal inundation and erosion, and impacts on biodiversity, including species’ loss and extinction.
4.Accepts local and international scientific evidence, including the UN’s Intergovernmental Governmental Panel on Climate Change report of October 2018, that there remains around a decade to take urgent action to limit global warming to the Paris Agreement target of 1.5 degrees and avert the most damaging effect of climate change.
5.Notes that the costs of inaction, including the costs of sea level rise in the Wellington Region, as identified in Attachment 2 of Report 19.364, entitled Setting a carbon neutrality target for GWRC, far outweigh the costs of taking action now.
6.Agrees to declare a climate emergency and commits to continue to:
a.Incorporate climate change considerations into all Council work programmes and decisions.
b.Provide strong and effective leadership in the face of climate change, including working with iwi, regional partners, the scientific community, local communities and business, to ensure a collaborative response.
c.Lead by example by agreeing to the target of becoming carbon neutral by 2030, and adopting the Carbon Neutrality Action Plan, outlined in section 3 of report 19.364 and the ‘Action Plan to Support the declaration of a Climate Emergency’, Attachment 2 to Report 19.342.
d.Advocate strongly for greater central government leadership and action on climate change.
7.Agrees to issue a statement outlining the reasons for this declaration.
8.Notes that the Climate Emergency declaration is made without explicit statutory authority or support.
9.Agrees to approach the Government for authority and tools for local government to more actively combat climate change.
The substantive motion was CARRIED.

5 September 2019, Opotiki District Council, New Zealand, population 9,100

Declared a Climate Emergency
motion text


Minutes Item 8 are here.
Motion:

RESOLVED
(1)That the report titled “Options For Making a Declaration on Climate Change” be received.
(2)That the Council makes a declaration in relation to climate change as follows:
Ōpōtiki District Council declares a climate change emergency and will consider further policies and initiatives as part of future planning processes.
HWTM/Browne Carried