Adaptation vs Mitigation

There are two ways to reduce and manage the impacts and risks of climate change:

  1. Adaptation: changing how we live, based on actual and expected changes to the environment resulting from greenhouse gas emissions already released into the atmosphere.
  2. Mitigation: reducing greenhouse gas emissions to limit further climate change.

We know the climate is changing and that we need to do both, reduce our emissions and adapt how we live so we are prepared for expected changes due to emissions already released into the atmosphere.



Adaptation means preparing for the impacts of actual and expected climate in the future - understanding the risks our communities, including mana whenua, face and planning mitigation.

ORC works on climate adaptation in these key areas:



Mitigation is human intervention to reduce the sources or enhance the reduction of greenhouse gases.

While ORC has a non-regulatory role in mitigation, we do have some policies in place that may help:

  1. Air Quality Strategy: this has enabled us to educate the community on best practice burning to help combat air pollution
  2. Public transport: our public transport networks in Dunedin and Queenstown transport millions of passengers each year, meaning fewer cars on our roads. Our Public Transport team collaborates with the Dunedin City Council, Queenstown Lakes District Council and NZ Transport Agency to change travel behaviour by encouraging public transport use and active travel, like walking and cycling, all to reduce car dependency.

 What is ORC doing?

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