Mark Thomas - New Mayor for Auckland

Raving About Resilience

I was interviewed this week following a Centre for Liveable Cities presentation on resilience.

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I spoke about the importance of building sensible but adaptable plans – something we have all too much experience about in New Zealand.

We also had speakers from Australia, India and the United Kingdom. We heard that last year’s United Nation’s Habitat 3 conference had made progress with the New Urban Agenda agreed, where global standards of achievement in sustainable urban development were confirmed. But measuring achievement against these standards is unfortunately still a work in progress.

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Professor Barbara Newman from the University of Canberra spoke about how Australia’s ACT’s resilence was boosted by it beating its own target of 100% renewable energy by 2020. Thus showing the impact that even small cities can make.

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Professor Peter Edwards from Singapore’s ETH Centre talked about the role buildings can now take in enhancing resilence. Green roofs for example have been shown to reduce electricity use by more than 50%.

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As internet of things activity expands, as device capability and monitoring/self-regulation increases, Professor Norman thinks the role of buildings as resilience buffers will only grow. Particularly as the practice of networking autonomous building systems becomes more prevalent.

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