Nelson City Council is seeking to learn more about the values we share as a coastal community, and will engage with the public from 22 June – 14 August 2022. The feedback collected will help inform a long-term strategy for adapting and preparing Whakatū Nelson for the impacts of a changing climate.

A quarter of all households in Nelson are located near the coast or the lower Maitai River in areas that will be affected by climate change, identified by coastal and river flooding maps released in 2020 and 2021 as being areas that will potentially be impacted by up to 1.5 metres of sea-level rise and/or a future Maitai River flooding event.

Council is seeking input into the things that are most important to the community about living near the water, such as ensuring access to the beach for walking, collecting mahinga kai and building homes that are climate resilient.

Deputy Mayor Judene Edgar says that looking at vulnerability and risk from coastal hazards isn’t an easy topic or a small one, but it’s a vital conversation occurring in coastal communities all around Aotearoa New Zealand, as well as globally.

“Climate change is a big topic that can be overwhelming. However recent flooding events like what we’ve seen over on the West Coast and the latest sea level rise data demonstrate the case for action on climate change – action to protect lives, incomes, homes, businesses and infrastructure.”

Residents can also give feedback on a range of possible climate change adaptation options, such as protecting our coast and rivers through dune restoration, planting or other protection measures such as coastal stopbanks and groynes (walls or barriers built out into the sea from a beach), or enabling the gradual retreat of people and property to safer ground.

Council’s adaptation response follows a 10-step process developed by the Ministry for the Environment known as Dynamic Adaptive Planning Pathways (DAPP). Council is currently working on the early stages of the DAPP process, which involves the assessment of coastal hazards, looking at what matters most in terms of values and objectives and examining vulnerability and risk.

As more is learned about the community’s values and shared objectives, Council will use this information to develop specific adaptation options for locations in Whakatū Nelson.

“A huge part of being good ancestors is that we leave the world in a better place for our tamariki and mokopuna,” says Deputy Mayor Judene Edgar. “Nimble, smart and strategic plans based on the latest science and modelling are needed urgently to help our coastal communities adapt to the unavoidable impacts of climate change.

“But we can’t make those plans and decide what to prioritise when we look at adaptation without understanding the values of our residents when it comes to the impacts of climate change, so we encourage everyone to submit feedback and attend workshops to find out more.”

People can have their say at any time until 14 August and are encouraged to attend one or more workshops and public events during July to hear from experts about the latest science and what this means for different locations in Nelson. The workshops are divided into suburb areas so people can choose the location(s) relevant to them.

These workshops will build on the engagement work that Council has done in recent years on coastal and river flooding, adding to the community feedback already received as part of a multi-year process to develop strategies for adapting to a changing climate in Nelson.

Council has put together up-to-date information and visual tools that show the projected impacts of climate change, such as the latest 3D maps, plus a range of options for finding out more. These are available at the community workshops and online at Shape Nelson.

The workshops are as follows:

Date and timeFocus AreaVenue
Wednesday 29 June 6-7pm                  General Public Webinar Zoom (register at  
Tuesday 5 July 
City Centre Trafalgar Pavilion, Trafalgar Park  
Wednesday 6 July
Atawhai Atawhai Community Church 
Thursday 7 July
Maitai Waahi Taakaro Golf Club 
Tuesday 12 July
Monaco Honest Lawyer 
Wednesday 13 July
(includes the residential areas north of the Annesbrook industrial area up to and including Rocks Road) 
Tāhunanui Community Hub 
Thursday 14 July
Industrial (includes Stoke industrial area, airport and Annesbrook industrial area) Pūtangitangi Greenmeadows 
Tuesday 19 July
The Wood The Granary, Founders Heritage Park 
Wednesday 20 July
(includes Glenduan, Cable Bay and Delaware Bay)  
Wakapuaka Hall 
Thursday 21 July
The Port  Trafalgar Pavilion 
Thursday 28 July
General Public Webinar Zoom (register at  

The National Adaptation Plan and Climate Adaptation Act, currently being developed by central government, will be important for determining the balance of responsibility between central government, local government, private property owners, and the private sector. Once Council has this nation-level direction, we will have conversations with the community on specific options and pathways planning for the long term.

For further information on Council’s climate adaptation work and to give feedback, people can go to

Residents can also get in touch via or 03 546 0200.