IAG New Zealand has welcomed the government’s National Adaptation Plan (NAP), saying that it is a “great start” but that more must be done to keep New Zealanders safe.
“The NAP is a great start in our response to the impacts of climate change and includes a wide range of activity that will help grow our ability to adapt,” said IAG New Zealand CEO Amanda Whiting (pictured above). “But we need to be much more specific about the steps we will take to adapt and how they will be paid for. As we’ve stated previously, climate change is happening. It is a critical issue for our country, and it is already having serious impacts on the lives of New Zealanders through more frequent and intense storms, floods, droughts, wildfires, and in time, rising sea levels.”
The NAP is New Zealand’s long-term strategy to deal with the effects of climate change. It seeks to address the risks identified in the 2020 climate change risk assessment, in order to protect lives, livelihoods, homes, businesses and infrastructure. The 200-page document outlines New Zealand’s priorities for the next six years and serves as a central guide for all government efforts to adapt to climate change.
“As New Zealand’s largest general insurer, with a relationship with one in two households, we see first-hand the devastating impact these events have on New Zealanders and how they put people’s lives at risk,” Whiting said. “The insurance we provide is here to support kiwis when things go wrong, but there’s so much more we must do to keep New Zealanders safe from the impacts of natural disasters. There are deliberate actions we can take to increase our resilience, alongside ongoing efforts to reduce carbon emissions. While we are pleased to see the launch of the NAP today, it’s apparent there is still a lot we need to do as a country to get ahead of these issues.”
According to Whiting, the safety and security of New Zealanders is paramount, and that there should be greater investment in infrastructure and other solutions that can protect people or move them out of harm’s way.
“We will continue to work alongside central and local government to help achieve this. The NAP provides a good platform for these discussions,” she said.