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Saturday, 22 October 2011

Lianne Dalziel - Information Update 24

Electorate MP Lianne Dalziel has issued another information update (No. 24) for her electorate.

Of particular interest is her research and opinion on:
  • the extent to which the council and developers knew of the lateral spreading and liquefaction risks throughout Christchurch (these had been identified as far back as 1977 by regional government),
  • how the Resource Management Act could have been used to prevent land development in risky areas, but was not
  • how the government, council and media have no desire for accountability
Lianne also speculates on why there are delays in redefining the Orange zones.

Her information update is here.

Friday, 21 October 2011

Fair at Holy Trinity Avonside

Don't forget - the fair is tomorrow (Saturday). Click on the poster below for a bigger picture.

Earthquake Royal Commission - video archive

The Earthquake Royal Commission has created a video archive (here) of expert panel discussions, presentations, and submissions. The archive is searchable and provides lists of subject headings and speakers. Information on how to use the archive is here.

Amongst the topics covered by the archive so far are (click on the topic to go to the relevant page):
Canterbury earthquake sequence 
Future seismicity 
(Note: these links will be accurate for a few days but, as more is added, the videos may spread over additional pages.)

A live RSS stream is available when the Commission is sitting, should you want to follow proceedings as they happen. It can be accessed here

Also available is a daily digest of proceedings and the video recordings made (here).

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Avonside during the heavy rain

The photographs below were taken yesterday afternoon along River Road and Avonside Drive.

River Road, near Swanns Bridge, with Cowlishaw Street on the far side of the river.

River Road near Dallington Terrace. The road has flooded and a breach is being made in the stop bank to allow the water to run into the Avon.

Avonside Drive near Galbraith Street, from  Dallington Terrace. The green willow trees in the middle-right mark the approximate edge of the bank on Avonside Drive. Behind the stop bank can be seen patches of flooding on Avonside Drive.

Taken from on top of the stop bank on Avonside Drive, a few metres downstream of Galbraith Street. The river surface is about half a metre higher than the road.


Red Cross - Enhanced Water Filter Grant

This grant is for those whose domestic water supply comes from either a well or a bore, and whose water quality was affected by the earthquake to the point where they now require an enhanced water filter (EWF) in order to make their water potable.

The grant is for an amount up to $5,000 per household which includes purchase, installation and test of the enhanced water filter. This grant is available only when all other avenues for funding assistance have been exhausted.

Full information about the grant, and an application form, is on the Red Cross website here.

Earthquake Royal Commission - submissions added to the on-line document library

The Earthquake Royal Commission has been adding a number of institutional and personal submissions to its on-line document library in recent days.

Today submissions primarily cover aspects of seismicity and soils, with some on engineering. Two historical documents were also loaded.

The book Christchurch - Swamp to City - A Short History of the Christchurch Drainage Board 1875-1989 has been uploaded in PDF format. It contains the full text which is a detailed history of how the city's storm water and sewage systems were developed. The PDF file contains all the maps including a copy of the "Back Maps". It is here.

Also added is a copy of the booklet,  Drainage Scheme - Christchurch and the Suburbs, written by William Clark and published in 1878. The author paints an interesting picture of the damp and less than sanitary state of Christchurch at the time and describes how he thinks storm water and sewage should be disposed of. There is an amazing amount of technical detail. The last page is a plan of a water privy showing the arrangement for cleansing by waste water from an artesian well. You can find it here.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

State Insurance - important information update

If you are a reader of Avenues Magazine you will find inside the October edition an 8 page insurance advertising and information brochure from State Insurance. You can also download it from the bottom of the page here.

The brochure first came out last month and, as you can see below, has a wide range of information. IAG, State Insurance's parent company, spent quite some time with staff from CanCERN in working through a series of questions and answers to establish the best questions to be answered. Credit to both organisations for taking a collaborative approach.

Repairing and rebuilding your house

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Lloyd's of London - the importance of disaster modelling

Lloyd's have released a news item about the importance of computer modelling in managing the risk associated with insuring property and life. The article, Disaster models make waves, is here.

There is an interesting paragraph that mentions earthquake risk in New Zealand:
The evolution of the science means that catastrophe modelling now extends beyond the boundaries of well-known danger areas, such as New Zealand (earthquakes) and Florida (hurricanes), to cover most parts of the world and the different perils associated with them.
If New Zealand is within "the boundaries of well-known danger areas" one wonders why the insurance industry is making such a fuss about the scale of the costs, and why re-insurance has become such a drama of uncertainty. 

Monday, 17 October 2011

AMI October newsletter

AMI today sent out their October newsletter giving an update on issues including when and under what circumstances insurance policies will be issued.

The headings are:

  • House assessments on track
  • Understand your insurance options when moving
    • Buying a house in a green land zone
    • Buying a house in a red, orange or white land zone
    • Building a house in a green land zone – existing AMI customers only
    • Building a house in a red, orange or white land zone
  • What to ask when considering a house purchase
    • Who currently insures the house?
    • Is the property in a green zone?
    • Has a claim been lodged for any earthquake damage the property has?
  • Do you need temporary accommodation?
The full newsletter can be downloaded from here.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Occupy Wall Street and Red Zone dissatisfaction

The Arab Spring, protests in parts of Europe, in Israel, and now the Occupy Wall Street movement (which has spread well beyond New York and is starting here) all have at their core significant dissatisfaction with the unjust and undemocratic processes that operate in their countries. Each centre of dissatisfaction is different in circumstances, degree and detail, but at the core is a common connection: the way things are done do not take the people into consideration. Many currently protesting in the residential Red Zones would see the similarity to their situation.

In a recent article for the US based Foreign Affairs website (here), authors Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri traverse recent events from demonstrations in Cairo through to the Wall Street Movement. Their finding is that part of the protest is about saying "we are here" - because those in power or with influence take no notice of the population at large. Those demonstrating want to participate; that is their concept of democracy.

Reading the article it is not hard to think how a very similar political act is playing out here in Christchurch, where those with power and vested interests (government, council, insurers, investors, developers) are trying to steer recovery in the direction of the purposes that best serve them. In doing so ordinary citizens are being ignored and politically dis-enfranchised. From the article we get: