30 May 2012

Around the World in 80+ min with HIA in the Energy Sector - Session I, Presentation 3

Health and energy resource development in New Zealand

 

No seperate HIA for projects.

Integrated within EIS process

  • Well established
  • Social determinant perspective less well developed
  • Health often implicit diffuse with IA reports
Use of standalone HIAs for plans and planning strategies.

 

Ministry of Health guidance released this year: "Planning for Wellbeing and Health"

  • Aim is to build a case for bringing health into planning.
 

But:

  • Economic pressures: Government keen to promote growth
  • Energy pressures: Government keen for companies to develop new energy sources especially fossil fuel sources such as coal and offshore oil and gas; easing regulations around licensing.
New EEZ environmental management bill:

  • Health focus will be explicit but only those due to environment effects.
Local Government Act:

  • Broad framework to guide local government role currently.
  • Proposal to change their role to simply that of local service delivery agents.
Resource Management Act:

  • Looking to boost the economic focus of the Act.
Net Effect?

  • Few opportunities to conduct HIAs
  • Where it is carried out then the focus will be on environmental health aspects
  • Prioritise short term aspects and economic gains
  • Likely to weaken the progress of HIA embedding.
One Step Forward, One Step Back?

  • Changes threaten to overshadow MoH work to encourage HIA.
  • Need to maintain pressure on developers via health profession, NGOs, public.
  • Industry guidance could be a useful lever with local companies (ICMM).