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Maori Carbon Collective calls on the Government to establish a Climate Adaption Fund

Image: Matthew Tukaki with former Secretary General of the UN Ban Ki Moon handing his report over on reform of the UNGC

New Government Report Shows Maori to be greatly impacted

The CEO of the Maori Carbon Collective, Matthew Tukaki, has called on the Government to act when it comes to the risks of climate change on Maori. The call comes just 24 hours after the Government released its National Climate Change Risk Assessment identified 43 risks that could have a major or extreme consequence to New Zealand – many of which have been identified as having a significant risk to Maori and community infrastructure:

“The Minister (James Shaw) is right to say that this report was long overdue but what it really has done is highlight the need to act now. Four risks in particular will impact on Maori such as:

  • To coastal ecosystems due to sea level rise and extreme weather events

  • To indigenous ecosystems and species from the enhanced spread of invasive species

  • To social cohesion and community wellbeing from displacement

  • Of exacerbating existing social inequities and creating new ones due to unequal distribution of climate change impacts

When it comes to sea level rise and coastal ecosystems, we will see an impact on low lying infrastructure such as Marae and the services, housing that surround it – from Hauora centres to papakainga housing developments. When it comes to the enhanced spread of invasive species, we will see more work needing to be done to protect native flora and fauna and that must include a review of the historic kawenata’s that have been in place for more than two decades and when it comes to community wellbeing and displacement we also know that to lose your whenua and your place to stand you also lose your culture and identity. That is why we must ensure that no other social inequities impact Maori at a time when many others do – we cannot, in other words, allow climate change to impact on our people to the point that we suffer further generations of loss and grief. That is why we must act and act now.” Tukaki said

“Today I am calling on the Government and Opposition parties to agree to the establishment of a national Maori Climate Change Adaption Fund – this will enable our communities to prepare and adapt to everything from the encroaching increase of king tides right through to planning for either the relocation or adaption of Marae, Hauora and Papakainga infrastructure.” Tukaki said

“It will also be a chance to compact the many programs that are out there into a much more coordinated way that is led, administered and managed by Maori that will also have a focus on the three pillars of sustainable development – the connectivity between economic, social and environmental priorities.” Tukaki said

Tukaki is a former member of the Board of the United Nations Global Compact in New York, a former Australian Representative to the UNGC (2009-2013) and is currently both the Executive Director of the New Zealand Maori Council and Executive Chair of the National Maori Authority. Tukaki is currently the CEO of the Maori Carbon Collective. Tukaki will be unveiling the plans of the MCC on Friday the 7th of August in Taupo.

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