Wild weather highlights need to plan for coastal erosion and flooding
The recent wild weather is yet another reminder of the need for our community to plan for increasing coastal erosion and flooding from sea level rise and climate change, says Kāpiti Coast District Council Coastal Manager Lyndsey Craig.
“We have to face the reality that large-scale storms are becoming more frequent and severe,” Ms Craig said. “This is causing more coastal erosion and flooding, which threatens public infrastructure like beach accessways, seawalls, stormwater pipes, and roads, as well as private property.
“It’s time our community took a serious look at how we will manage these risks. We need a plan so that we are better prepared and more resilient and don’t simply pass on the problem to our kids and future residents.”
The Council’s Takutai Kāpiti Coastal adaptation project is holding a free Kāpiti-wide coastal hazards public information event at the Ocean Road Community Centre in Paraparaumu Beach, 11am-2pm on Saturday 23 July.
“We’re hosting this event to prompt conversations on how our district should adapt to coastal hazards, Ms Craig said.
“We’ll be joined by technical experts from coastal consultancy Jacobs who did the recent coastal hazards and vulnerability and susceptibility assessment for the Kāpiti Coast. They’ll be there to outline their findings, along with other experts on flooding and erosion who have been mapping what we can expect due to the combined effects of climate change, sea level rise, and land movement, which in Kāpiti is subsiding.
“As part of the adaptation project we also have representatives from mana whenua and experts in social and cultural impacts of coastal hazards and the effects on our natural landscape and ecology.
“We’ll also be joined by the Coastal Advisory Panel, which is a group of locals who have put their hands up to represent the voice of the community as we look at what options our district has for adapting to coastal changes.
“The panel has been asked to engage with the community and, guided by expert advice, will provide recommendations to Council on what we need to consider in developing future district plan coastal provisions.
“The panel is keen to hear from people about what matters most when it comes to managing coastal hazards. This isn’t just for people who live right on the coast – we’re a coastal community so we all benefit, but we also all pay through rates when it comes to maintaining, repairing or relocating public infrastructure. We want everyone to be informed and to have a voice about how we manage this issue,” Ms Craig said.
Join the conversation: Coastal hazards public information event, 11am-2pm, Saturday 23 July, Community Centre, 45 Ocean Road, Paraparaumu Beach or tell us what you think online at haveyoursay.kapiticoast.govt.nz/coastal.