$140 million for science research

Press Release – New Zealand Government

The Minister of Civil Defence, John Carter, said that $140 million of science funding announced today will help make New Zealand safer, and better prepared for natural hazards.

$140 million for science research: safer, better prepared New Zealand

The Minister of Civil Defence, John Carter, said that $140 million of science funding announced today will help make New Zealand safer, and better prepared for natural hazards.

The Minister of Research, Science and Technology, Wayne Mapp, announced the 10-year
$140 million “Natural Hazards Research Platform” this afternoon.

The funding is for New Zealand-specific research for all natural hazards – including volcanoes, earthquakes, weather, oceans and others – and is also for research into social impacts and engineering.

“This next 10 years of funding is to further advance our knowledge of our hazards, what they mean for our people, our towns and our infrastructure, and how we can make ourselves more resilient,” Mr Carter said.

“I strongly support the way the research platform has been set up.”

The Natural Hazards Research Platform provides for long-term, complex research projects, involves different research organisations working closely together, supports strengthened connections across different science disciplines, and focuses on linking research teams with the people and organisations who will use the results.

The Platform research is expected to be applied by local and regional government, engineering and design consultancies, emergency services, the Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management and many other central government agencies such as the Earthquake Commission.

“Kiwis have already produced world-leading products and ideas that are used in many countries,” Mr Carter said. “Base isolators, forecasting systems, risk modelling and building codes are examples of New Zealand research being applied around the world.

“The Natural Hazards Research platform will allow our scientists and researchers to build on the excellent work they have already done to make our country safer.”
Background information

Desired outcome

The desired outcome of research supported by the Platform will be to directly contribute to improved economic, infrastructural and social resilience to natural hazards in New Zealand.

Scope

Research will focus on:

  • avoidance or mitigation of natural hazard risks that are likely to result in a civil defence state of emergency (either local or national)
  • avoidance or mitigation of natural hazard risks that could potentially cause catastrophic impacts on New Zealand’s economy, environment or social well being, but may not result in the declaration of a national state of emergency
  • community, organisational and infrastructural resilience to natural hazard events.
  • Research themes

    Research will be organised into five themes. The themes will have linkages and can influence each other. The themes are:

  • geological hazards
  • weather hazards
  • all hazard risk assessment
  • social impacts
  • engineering mitigation.
  • Details of the Natural Hazards Research Platform are available from the Foundation for Science Research and Technology (FRST) website www.frst.govt.nz.

    ENDS

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