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Fraying coastal edges : coastal hazard adjustment and sustainable management : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Philosophy (Resource and Environmental Planning) at Massey University
This thesis investigates the development appropriate natural hazard policy and
adjustment in New Zealand, through a topic evaluation of the proposed coastal
hazard zone methodology presented in Gibb (1994). The thesis is structured
around the four contexts: institutional, physical, socio-economic and cultural,
that are considered appropriate in the decision-making process about natural
hazard policy and adjustment.
The review of literature about managing natural hazards provides the
attributes which aid in the formulation of natural hazard policy and
adjustment. This literature is augmented with attributes taken from the
growing body of sustainability literature. These attributes are then modelled
into a theoretical policy and adjustment model, supplemented by checklist. The
model developed reflects the paradigm shift to a contextual mode of thinking.
This contextual mode of thinking means that a wider range of contexts needs to
be considered when developing policies an adjustments.
The review of hazard management in New Zealand highlights the fact that the
requirements of the Resource Management Act 1991 (the Act) forces planners to
be contextual in their approach to natural hazards. This thesis intends to
provide further guidance on how this contextual approach should be
undertaken. The key findings of the thesis indicate that natural hazards
planning should be considered in the wider arena of resource management
planning, with policies and adjustment undertaken fulfilling a broader range of
coastal management objectives the the narrow objective of adjustments to
natural hazards. The contextual approach to natural hazards planning means
that planners and local authorities need to obtain better information to inform
their management role under the sustainable management concept. The thesis
has concluded that the current pre-occupation on the need for a consistent
national approach could be ineffectual because the institutional, physical, socioeconomic
and cultural variations around New Zealand's coastline precludes
emphasis on developing a single methodology for adjustments to natural