|dc.description.abstract||The world is constantly changing. Christchurch, New Zealand, has recently experienced drastic changes after earthquakes struck the city. The earthquakes caused the city to physically shake, and the land to sink in some places and rise in others. Now further change is forcast and parts of Christchurch could be under water by 2115 according to experts.
Climate change induced sea level rise is recognised as a international issue with potential impacts for coastal communities all over the world. The Chrischtchurch City Council is required to have a 100-year planning horizon for sea level rise and this means planning for at least one meter, and possibly up to two meters, of sea level rise by 2115. This dissertation investigates the planning response to slow onset disasters, change, and uncertainty, using the example of sea-level rise in Christchurch, and it examines the role of public participation in this. To achieve this, the ways in which planning theory and practice acknowledge uncertainty, and cope with change, were critically analysed along with the Christchurch City Council’s response to the Tonkin and Taylor predictions and modelling. Semi-structured interviews with professionals in natural hazards risk reduction, policy, and planning were conducted, and the previous and proposed Christchurch City District Plans were compared.
Planning for sea level rise in Christchurch provides an example of how planners may cope with slow onset change. The results of this dissertation suggests that the favoured risk reduction strategy for coastal communities in Christchurch is an adaptation strategy, and at present there is no sign of managed retreat being employed. The results also suggests using a planning approach that involves public participation for best results when planning for change, uncertainty or slow onset disasters.||en