October 20, 2021
Climate change devastating Māori by century end
A new report from Ngā Pae o te Maramatanga and Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research warns that climate change will have a moderate impact on Māori by 2050 but a severe impact by the end of the century on current forecasts.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change predicts global temperature to reach or exceed 1.5°C of warming over the next 20 years.
The report on climate change adaptation and mitigation for te ao Māori, He huringa āhuarangi, he huringa ao, says freshwater, land and coastal marine ecosystems and biodiversity in Aotearoa will be challenged by warming temperatures and reductions in rainfall.
There could be habitat loss and extinction for some plant and animal species, with any decline in the quantity and quality of keystone species like paua, kina and koura adversely impacting Māori customary practises, cultural identity, social cohesion, and well-being.
Some marae and papakainga may have to be moved, along with urupā in low lying and coastal areas prone to flooding and erosion.
Climate-related adverse health impacts are expected to become more severe and be borne disproportionately by groups like Māori who already suffer health inequities.