National Nati news / Politics / Environment
7 Mar 2018

Takina ra ko te kawa o Rongo ki ngā tai e papaki kau ana ki te Whanganui ā Tara
Toia mai ngā waka utaina mai ngā waka o te motu ki te marae nei o Pipitea
Purea nei e ngā hau o Tawhirimatea ka uu mai i Tawhitinui i Tawhitiroa i Tawhitipamamao
Kawea mai i ngā take whenua i ngā take wai ki uta ki tai i tuku iho mai whārikihia mai
Kia tina! Kia whena! Kia toka te manawa ora!
Tina toka te manawa ora ki Ranginui e tuu nei, ki Papatuuaanuku e takoto nei.
Uia mai kei hea te turuturu nō Hineteiwaiwa e tu ana?
E rongo whakaiiria ake ki runga kia tina! Tina! Hui e! Taaiki e!


Humanity is facing a number of current and impending crises. The world’s attention is increasingly being focused on abrupt climate change.Cataclysmic weather events, extreme temperatures, deadly water shortages, devastating forest fires, rising sea levels, ocean acidification and the destruction of natural habitats are common news headlines.

Reports of billions of dollars in economic damage and incalculable human suffering are staggering and the prognosis is the worst is yet to come.

Over the past year in Aotearoa, we have witnessed unprecedented and record breaking rises in temperature, extreme floods, wildfires, devastating coastal inundation and sea level rise.

We each now have personal stories of how the lives of our whānau, friends and communities
have already been profoundly affected by the changes happening around us.

To mitigate the worst effects Aotearoa needs a whole of society response to the climate crisis.

The objective of this summit is too bring together a cross section of Māori leaders and climate
scientists and experts to share information, analysis and strategies for action.

Māori Leaders Climate Summit

At Waitangi in February 2018, the Iwi Chairs Forum agreed to convene the first Māori Leaders’ Climate Change Summit ( the Summit ) to be held in Wellington on 24-25 March 2018.

With a strong line-up of expert presenters and interactive workshops, the Summit will update Māori leaders on the imperiled state of our climate. More importantly, we will begin outcome-oriented engagement for how whānau, hapū, kāinga iwi and Maori industries can take action now to mitigate the worst effects of abrupt climate change.

Our focus will be on the design of climate crisis ‘audits’ to help communities understand and initiate assessment for threats and opportunities to their specific environmental, future development and socio-economic situations.

This hui will be the first of a series of ongoing hui at a national and regional level. The inaugural Summit will be a critical event for all Māori leaders, of whānau, hapū and iwi who care about the wellbeing of their people now and their near to long-term survival.


Saturday 24 March 2018

  • 09:30 - Pōhiri, Registration
  • 10:15 - Erik Brenstrum What is Happening with the Weather?
  • 11:00 - Marcus Matchett Surviving Edgecumbe
  • 11:15 - Dr James Renwick Climate Change Implications & Timeline
  • 12:15 - KAI

(Every presentation time includes 15mins for Questions & Discussion)


  • 12:45 - Rod Oram Economic Impacts: Global & Local
  • 2:15 - 15 minute break
  • 2:30 - Sir Mark Solomon How Do We Respond?
  • 3:45 - Dr Rhys Jones Health & Social Issues
  • 4:45 - Recap
  • 5:00 - KAI
  • 6:00 - Rangatahi Forum Kei hea te turuturu nō Hineteiwaiwa e tu ana?

Sunday 25 March 2018

  • 8:00 - KAI
  • 9:00 - Wendy Saunders Threat assessment auditing and Iwi planning
  • 10:00 - Chris Kumeroa Civil Defense: Risk assessment and community resilience
  • 11:00 - Tina Ngata Community Action
  • 12:00 - Mike Smith Mitigation


  • 1:00 - KAI
  • 2:00 - Presentation of Summary to Minister’s


Erik Brenstrum
Senior Meteorologist at the NZ Met Service.

Erik has been an operational weather forecaster at MetService since the mid-1970s, and is one of the most experienced and expert meteorologists in the forecast room. He is a great communicator of meteorology and climate, having published 'The New Zealand Weather Book' in 1998. Erik is a regular contributor to New Zealand Geographic and to Radio New Zealand on topics from climate history to extreme weather events. He has been awarded the MetService Henry Hill award, and has twice won the New Zealand Association of Scientists’ Science Communicator award.

Marcus Matchett
nō Te Whānau ā Apanui

A former resident of Edgecumbe, Bay of Plenty, Marcus provides a insight into the experience of living through the extreme weather that destroyed the town of Edgecumbe. He will be discussing the flood event and life after, looking at what were the immediate, medium and long term effects?

Dr James Renwick
Professor School of Geography, Environment and Earth Sciences.

A leader for the last 20 years in understanding observed climate variability and change in the New Zealand region and across the Southern Hemisphere, Dr Renwick is an advisor to Government Ministers, government agencies, and MPs around climate variability & change and a member of the Ministry for the Environment Technical Advisory Group on Atmosphere and Climate. Dr. Renwick has worked on the effects of climate on sectors of the economy, particularly agriculture, fisheries, energy, and also led a major project for MPI on the effects of global warming on the primary sector in NZ. He also led the NIWA 6-year programme to determine climate related risks to the energy sector, particularly with regard to hydro power security of supply and worked in advancing our understanding of the effects of climate variability on the risk of rural fires around New Zealand.

Rod Oram
Senior Business Journalist, Adjunct Professor at AUT

Rod Oram has 40 years’ experience as an international business journalist. He has worked for various publications in Europe and North America, including the Financial Times of London. He contributes weekly to Nine to Noon, and Newstalk ZB. He is a frequent public speaker on deep sustainability, business, economics, innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship, in both NZ and global contexts. Rod has been helping fast-growing New Zealand companies through his involvement with The ICEHOUSE, the entrepreneurship centre at the University of Auckland’s Business School. Penguin published in 2007 his book on the New Zealand economy, Reinventing Paradise. He was named the Landcorp Agricultural Communicator of the Year for 2009. Bridget Williams Books has published his latest book, Three Cities: Seeking Hope in the Anthropocene , details at

Sir Mark Solomon
nō Ngai Tahu, Ngati Kurī

Sir Mark Solomon has represented his Kaikoura Rūnanga since 1988 and has contributed to his community in many capacities, ranging from roles as a trustee of Takahanga Marae, the local school board and on the board of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, a position he held from 2001-07. He has been Deputy Chair of Canterbury District Health Board since December 05, 2016, and served as a Director of Ngai Tahu Holdings Corporation Limited; Director of Ngäi Tahu Fisheries Settlement Limited and Chair at Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu.

Dr Rhys Jones
nō Ngāti Kahungunu

Dr Jones is a Public Health Medicine Specialist and father of three boys who lives in Auckland. He is currently a Senior Lecturer in Māori Health at Te Kupenga Hauora Māori, Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences (FMHS), The University of Auckland. His research interests include ethnic health inequities, the role of health professional education in advancing indigenous health, and environmental influences on Māori health. Dr Jones is also an Executive Board member and the co-convener of Ora Taiao, who are part of a worldwide movement of health professionals and health organisations urgently focusing on the health challenges of climate change and the health opportunities of climate action.

Wendy Saunders
nō Ngāti Raukawa

Wendy Saunders is a social scientist specialising in land use planning and natural hazards whether geological or weather-related, and including hazards that are exacerbated by climate change. Wendy has worked for many years at GNS Science, where a core part of her work is engaging with communities, councils and others, to improve the way natural hazards are incorporated into planning for land use. In 2013, Wendy was a World Social Science Fellow in Risk Interpretation and Action, and in 2017 she won a New Zealand Planning Institute award for best practice, in relation to an online natural hazard planning toolkit she developed for councils. She is member of the Mātauranga Māori and Governance programmes in the Resilience to Nature’s Challenges National Science Challenge and is leading their Engagement Programme. Chris Kumeroa nō Te Atihaunui a Pāpārangi Chris recently established a pan iwi civil defence framework based around the Whanganui district. His expertise derives from international experience in risk assessment and crisis management and working as a Security Consultant. Chris was a special service soldier and is now the Executive Director Global Risk Consulting LTD.

Tina Ngata
nō Ngāti Porou

A leader and advocate for sustainability and indigenous rights, Tina is a lecturer of the Bachelor’s Degree in Māori Advancement in the Environment (Te Mana Ao Tūroa), Te Wānanga o Aotearoa. Her work involves local environmental initiatives including; community based water monitoring; an indigenous floating wetlands treatment project; advisor on the District Council Wastewater Technical Advisory group, a national board member of Para Kore (marae waste minimisation initiative), and mentoring local Māori youth conservation group Ngā Tama Toa o Waihīrere Eco-Warriors. In February this year, Tina travelled the North Island as a part of the PURE Tour, to highlight the global problem of plastic pollution. In 2014 Tina committed to a personal plastic purchasing ban, her experiences and challenges in this journey can be followed via a blog page, twitter, and facebook community called “The Non-Plastic Māori.”

Mike Smith
nō Ngaa Puhi

Senior Climate Campaigner for Greenpeace Aotearoa, Mike has led Māori engagement of the national and global campaign to halt fossil fuel expansion. This has resulted in widespread opposition to deep sea oil drilling and increasing support for the development of alternative energy. Mikes commitment to combating climate change began in 1992 when he represented Māori at the inaugural World Earth Summit in Rio de Janiero, Brazil. Mike produced and directed the long form documentary “He Ao Wera: Climate Change in Aotearoa” in 2008 which was distributed he amongst Māori communities to critical acclaim. Mike is currently producing digital sea level rise modeling that incorporates drone photography and animations that assist Māori communities in assessing risk. He is currently a member of the Iwi Chairs Forum Climate Working Group and the co-convenor of the 2018 Maori Leadership Climate Summit.

For further information about the summit contact:

Leaara Kauika-Stevens
Secretariat - Iwi Chairs Forum

Phone:  +6463465707
Mobile: +64275009132

Download Maori Leaders Climate Change Summit here