This document identifies key gaps in knowledge on the impact of climate change in New Zealand, arguing that institutions need to be proactive in the involvement of local and exposed communities, including indigenous communities (iwi), in climate change adaptation and decision-making. Law and policy need to be adjusted to be fit-for-purpose for the new challenges of climate change, including the roles of government agencies, limiting exposure to hazards, and financing of adaptation.
Knowledge gaps identified include:
- understanding vulnerability and resilience in a climate change context;
- how decision-making roles and responsibilities should be allocated especially in relation to more vulnerable people and communities;
- the extent to which flood mitigation schemes will be effective in protecting communities under climate change conditions;
- how iwi and community groups are already anticipating and responding to climate-related challenges;
- how councils are and should be working proactively to reduce impacts on the more vulnerable; and
- how information about climate change impacts can be more effectively communicated.