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Lessons to be learned by reviewing past events
Five elements for world class infrastructure
Does WorkSafe have the will to take a lead
New Zealand second least affordable for a house
Commercial retail and office property outlook
Must read reports surviving the new decade
Construction Sector Training Programme
Facilities management at the design stage
Innovative Red Cross blended training programme
Blue collar skills shortages threaten growth
Self driving public transport in Qatar
City battens down the security hatches
Coworking a major infrastructure disruptor
Chemical Care training advice and help
Common sense to implement circular economy
Kiwi moves towards a circular economy
Singapore forges ahead with waste to energy
Australian waste-to-energy fire, aim, ready lament
Nature offer water utilities an even break
What to expect from climate change
Praise for Kaikoura inclusive solutions
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Barry Dyer Chief Executive Responsible Care New Zealand
Paul Blair Chief Executive Infrastructure New Zealand
Jerome Matthews Legal Consultant Media Solutions
Andrea Erickson Global Lead The Nature Conservancy
Chris Dibble Research & Comms Director Colliers Int.
Jonathon Ives Group General Manager OneStaff
Published by Media Solutions Ltd PO Box 503, Whangaparaoa Auckland 0943 09 428 7456 Original material published online and in this magazine is copyright, but may be reproduced Publisher
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providing permission is obtained from the editor and acknowledgement given to Media Solutions. Opinions expressed are those of the authors and may not necessarily be those of Media Solutions Ltd. safetynews.co.nz infrastructurenews.co.nz ISSN 2624-0572 (Print) ISSN 2624-0580 (Online) propertyandbuild.com
Risk is inevitable â&#x20AC;&#x201C; how you manage it is the problem and the solution By Barry Dyer Chief Executive of Responsible Care NZ
The traditional look back over the previous 12 months holds little appeal for those looking for pragmatic and effective responses to a growing list of international and local concerns
hese range from climate change to challenges to sustaining our businesses and maintaining our quality of life. Globally, a pandemic joins drought, famine, wildfires, deforestation and rising sea levels, in threatening social and ecosystems. Governments struggle with their inability to satisfy understandable but overwhelming demands to resolve resource-heavy issues like refugees, famine, drought and ongoing regional wars. Youth-led demonstrations, criticising the lack of progress in dealing with climate change, underscored by increasingly extreme weather events, highlight the failure of political leadership required to address the issues. The central theme here is successfully managing the risk associated with an issue. There are always lessons to be learned by reviewing past events, provided the right conclusions result in appropriate action to prevent a recurrence or enhance an outcome – sadly, too often mutually exclusive. Recent New Zealand examples include: • A two-year hiatus in the building of safer, high-tech roads (despite campaigns to reduce accidents), future proofing national infrastructure and relieving traffic congestion, frustrates business and travelers alike, while delaying the benefits and incurring massive increasing costs. • The flawed gun buyback scheme quickly implemented following the tragic
Christchurch shootings. While well intentioned, fewer than 9,500 of NZ Police estimates of 56,000-173,000 of the targeted, military style weapons have been surrendered by law-abiding owners, at a cost of $100m. Meanwhile, gang-related shootings are becoming more frequent. • Calls to ban tourists following the 20 deaths from the White Island volcanic eruption are understandable, but fail to recognize the circumstances. Tourists take risks in their travels every day. More than 130 locations worldwide offer the opportunity for an unprotected, close encounter with geothermal activity, not forgetting the 300 residents living at the base of the frequently active Stromboli volcano and of course, the entire population of Rotorua. • Increasing calls to halt the Pike River Drift entry because politics have replaced any sensible expectation that any useful evidence would be recovered from the alleged ‘crime scene’ in this $50m project. Life itself is a risky undertaking; many events such as extreme weather are literally beyond our control, whereas we can make both personal and national decisions to help mitigate or even eliminate many of the threats to our comfortable existence. Allowing public protest to overturn legal rights is a dangerous trend; protest without offering a better alternative is pointless. We each make riskbased decisions every day, ranging from the relatively mundane to complex
Pike River Mine
Allowing public protest to overturn legal rights is a dangerous trend; protest without offering a better alternative is pointless safetynews.co.nz
Yearbook 2020 situations at work, or during leisure activities. Increasingly, we risk losing our vaunted, traditional personal self-sufficiency if we rely on government to regulate risk out of our lives. The poorly reported, traditional World Economic Forum in Davos became the ‘Climate Change Forum’, with speakers exhorting us to “trust the science”. Imposing unrealistic constraints on vital national industry sectors will prove counterproductive. Conversely, there is little acknowledgement of companies researching superior products and processes. The urgent need is for the innovative, ‘outside the box’ thinking New Zealanders are allegedly famous for and quickly implementing pragmatic solutions. Science will provide the solutions and the chemical industry is a key contributor to these daunting global challenges. Setting aside ideology in favour of pragmatic solutions such as modern waste to energy facilities, while dispassionately investigating greener solutions such as nuclear energy, should be routinely
measured, adult debate about how we can best collectively and individually respond to the risks dictating not just our wellbeing, but our long term survival. Eschewing the hyperbole and unhelpful criticism, the
to regulate, too often not completing a risk analysis to confirm existing performance standards are inadequate and to identify a preferred solution to be appropriately resourced and trialled prior to enactment
Zero Harm was always an unrealistic goal; accidents will happen, including human error and simple failure to assess the risk involved and react accordingly global chemical industry is actively facilitating achievement of UN Sustainability Goals, while employing the science necessary to improve safety, health and environmental performance. Any successful strategy requires the facts, not ‘factoids’ of the issue, transcending fake news, a virulent social media and political point scoring. Enable informed decision-making by those contemplating a stroll through a thermal wonderland or jumping off an otherwise safe bridge. New Zealand’s first response to any incident is
and implementation. The absence of a robust justification (business case) in ‘consultation documents’ often released on the eve of long holidays, stifles debate by reducing complex issues to a simplistic choice, then presented as a mutually acceptable outcome. The recent, inadequately argued proposal for major change to our already efficient chemical classification regime represents a disruptive solution looking for a problem to solve. We need to improve compliance before attempting to legislate our way out of a particular problem. ‘Zero Harm’ was always an unrealistic goal; accidents will happen, including human error and simple failure to assess the risk involved and react accordingly. Banning road accidents won’t eliminate the annual road toll, even with draconian enforcement. Making gangs illegal won’t remove the appeal to young, disenfranchised youth until we offer more attractive options. Charter schools, the highly sought after Limited Services Volunteer scheme (graduating 1600 youth each year) and Outward Bound all equip troubled youngsters with
essential life skills, setting them on the road to better lives. Once certain we have the best available solution and the major obstacle to progress is non-compliance, self-regulation by industry, with government support and encouragement, becomes the norm, enabling government to focus on the worst offenders. The urgent requirement, particularly in an election year, is the timely provision of accurate information to enable informed decisions. This requires an intelligent strategy and plan, otherwise we have the entertaining LTA advertisement encouraging youngsters to buy unsafe cars (“The safer the car, the safer they are” while simultaneously scrapping the ACC discount for safer vehicles – a surcharge of $28 for 1.2 million higher safety rated vehicles, while ‘rewarding’ less safe vehicles with a $35 rebate) Media fascination with sensationalism and trivia hampers informed debate, as fewer accomplished reporters are tasked with investigating key issues. Let’s hope kudos for an invigorated, inquiring mainstream media committing their talent to competently informing their readership of the real issues, proves to be the highlight of next year’s review. Let’s also hope the increasingly overwrought ‘chaos’, ‘lockdown’ and ‘absolutely’ are conspicuous by their absence throughout the Year of the Rat. The views and opinions expressed by Media Solutions content partner Responsible Care CEO Barry Dyer may not necessarily be those of Responsible Care New Zealand.
Developing a 2050 vision is the top priority to safeguard infrastructure By Paul Blair Chief Executive of Infrastructure NZ Paul.Blair@infrastructure.org.nz
Through 15 years of creating positive change in infrastructure, Infrastructure NZ has identified five key elements that are fundamental to having a world class infrastructure system. 1) Vision and leadership Our country needs to collectively debate and then commit to a vision of the lifestyle (economic, social, cultural and environmental) we want Kiwis to be living in 30-plus yearsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; time. 2) Long term and integrated plans We need to translate our long-term vision into practical and coordinated steps to reach those goals. 3) Reliable sources of funding and adequate financing tools Infrastructure needs a reliable, long-term funding (income) stream divorced from the whims of politics. Financing tools, including the ability to raise debt or equity based on assets or revenue streams, is equally important in making sure we pay the best price for infrastructure and that all generations fairly pay their way for the infrastructure they benefit from. 4) Laws, regulations, and incentives Without the right structure and tools, even the best vision, plan, and funding will not be able to overcome poorly designed legislation, unsound regulation, or bad incentives. 5) Capability and capacity Our industries need to be healthy, well-supported, with a strong pipeline of talent and innovation in order to succeed. 8
Why is it considered appropriate that New Zealand Inc, represented by our central government, does NOT have a long-term, non partisan, supported vision for the welfare of our citizens yet Local Government is mandated by law to do just that
oving into an election year, there will be promises and commitments aplenty -- more funding for this sector, greater oversight of this area, a fairer system for this group. In the face of all these promises and ideas, it is important to lift our vision to focus on the long-term priorities for New Zealand. (Hint: it’s not as simple as more money). A step change in vision and leadership is necessary to change the course we are on. Urgently needed is a national vision. A vision would set the tone for any conversations around the infrastructure required to enable the vision, and it would transcend three-year political cycles. New Zealand’s number one priority should be to develop that national vision, with that vision then informing the infrastructure, skills, innovation, labour reform and other drivers of productivity and wellbeing. From this, the implementation through planning will necessarily follow. Local government is required by law to have a 30-year vision, and businesses routinely use vision as guideposts to inspire their people towards a common purpose. Central government has no such imperative. A conversation on vision would force us as a nation to ask things such as how many people will be living in New Zealand in 30 years’ time and what sort of wellbeing will they enjoy?
Will they be rich, but at the expense of our natural environment? Is one of our national values fairness and equality – if so, do all cultures in New Zealand have equality of opportunities to succeed? What is the right balance of individual success -- capitalism and property rights versus the needs of
Infrastructure NZ sees several key reasons to focus on vision: to change our orientation from effects to outcomes, to streamline and coordinate our plans and to follow best practice established overseas. Refocus on outcomes First, a vision is necessary to give our country a
sees us stumble through events, impacts, and decisions that are occurring around us, wondering how on earth could things get so twisted, and then making hasty decisions and finding band-aid solutions to the problems. Our current system is based on avoiding at all costs the negative out-
Our civil service is designed to spend exactly what they are told, not to shoot for great ideas or impacts society as a whole? Currently, the conversation is focused on smaller details, not seeing the forest for the trees. We debate the amount of money spent on roads or rail, we argue about property rates and electricity bills. But we rarely discuss what we want these critical systems to do for us, in the long term.
focus on outcomes. A vision would take our current system of reactive decision-making and ad-hoc policy and would reorient it to focus on the headline goals that we want for our country and the proactive policies and decisions we need to make to get there. The current business-as-usual approach
comes of doing things imperfectly. Our civil service is designed to spend exactly what they are told, not to shoot for great ideas or impacts. Our planning system is designed to avoid negative impacts on anyone at any time, not to create a safe and healthy country. We have become like a person who is afraid to safetynews.co.nz
Yearbook 2020 leave their house because of the dangers of walking down the street or breathing the polluted air or riding in an elevator. And as a result, we are missing out on the benefits of shooting for outcomes or living life to its fullest. We designed a Resource Management Act (RMA) which says that, theoretically, anything is permissible. Then – once we’ve permitted too many things to happen and have overallocated our rivers, polluted our land, or built houses without infrastructure to support them – then and only then do we do notice. We have placed more and more responsibilities on to local councils, particularly to oversee growth, while leaving them with inadequate and poorly designed taxes and funding tools that are ill-equipped to handle these challenges. Then, when we see them fighting growth by any means necessary, we complain about their lack of discipline or expertise. We built a government of departments and agencies that is less focused on making meaningful change in their sector than on spending the exact amount of money they are allocated. Then, when our children go to temporary classrooms, or our hospitals are leaking, or the poor are neglected, then we take notice. Waiting like this, until our services or people are in crisis, forces us into poor decision-making. We have tight timelines: the Minister wants an answer within six months, the electorate expect this to be fixed within three years, our native species will go extinct within decades. Even in these times of crisis, we have a lack of imagination and look for 10
the quickest solutions, not the ones that are the most successful, coordinated, or robust. The result is that we spend more than we should on a never-ending sequence of ‘quick fixes,’ which are rarely either. A quick fix is not going to move the needle on our poor resource management system, a quick fix is not going to solve the funding challenges for local councils. Rarely are these solutions quick either. They’re quick in that they usually throw some money at the problem and get it off the decision-maker’s desk, but it’s not rare for the issue to bubble again as people, businesses, and bureaucrats struggle to understand or implement the hastily thrown-together solution that was dreamt up. The way to address this problem is to fundamentally reorient our thinking to focus on outcomes. No longer will we focus on stopping anything negative from occurring, no matter the cost. Instead, our governments will have the mandate to achieve certain goals, and to come up with solutions and ideas that will get us there. We don’t have to be
to address the current mess that is planning in New Zealand. The number, duration, format, complexity, power, and focus of all the different plans could not be less coordinated. The RMA, the Local Government Act, and the Land Transport Management Act, all mandate planning across multiple levels (national, regional, and/or local), some of which are subsidiary to others, some of which merely have regard to others, and some which occur in parallel without any connection. Thus, city planners, most
Our planning system is designed to avoid negative impacts on anyone at any time, not to create a safe and healthy country reckless with our finances, but a bit of wiggle room to account for uncertainty is necessary in an uncertain world. Fixing our plans The second imperative is
of whom work for councils with a ratepayer base of 50,000 or less, are expected to understand and operate responsibly in light of the thousands of pages of legislation, amendments, and NPSs when they develop
and amend their own plans. In an effort to address some of the infrastructure challenges in this country, councils have been required to develop 30-year infrastructure plans. While a necessary and welcome step, in the absence of a vision or goals, the plans typically reflect business-as-usual thinking rather than aspirations or innovations. Without any committed funding to pay for projects, the best plans are ultimately wish-lists that will rely on the generosity of the government at the time. With all these plans occurring at a local level, coordinating plans across territorial authorities is a challenge. Councils, with their limited funding tools, are as likely to see their neighbouring councils as competition as strategic allies in building a future. Meanwhile Kiwis regularly cross their council boundaries when they go to work, play sports, or visit friends and family. Some authorities, seeing this lack of coordination, have developed regional
Yearbook 2020 plans. These attempt to bridge the gaps and provide overarching guidance. Typically, however, central government does not come to the table, or is not even invited, leaving a large gap in both the funding for major projects and in the coordination with nationally overseen infrastructure. Each of these plans has their own ideas of success through key performance indicators or overarching goals. These goals are rarely coordinated and may well be at cross-purposes. A national vision for our country and its infrastructure would focus these planning processes. They would be oriented around outcomes and aspirations rather than projects and programmes. They would have a shared vision: regional goals would flow from national goals and would inform local goals. They would be coordinated: plans would directly influence their subsidiary plans, preventing neighbouring regions and councils from misaligning. Learning from the best The third reason for developing a national vision is that this is what is done by the most successful nations. Successful nations become that way because they take coordinated actions to move towards collective goals. Every year Infrastructure NZ sends a delegation of senior infrastructure leaders from the public and private sector overseas to learn about best practice in infrastructure strategy, policy, and delivery. Visiting nations and regions across Asia, Europe, and North America, our delegations have consis-
tently seen that world class infrastructure depends on having a strong and unified vision. In Scotland, the Scottish government relies on its National Planning Framework, which sets out the four key goals, which are to be 1) a successful sustainable place, 2) a low carbon place, 3) a natural, resilient place, and 4) a connected place. From this flow all other plans that focus on Scotlandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s largest cities and its 14 national development priorities, as well as its Infrastructure Investment Plan. Local plans in Scotland must also be consistent with this Framework. By having a proactive vision, plans in Scotland are more coherent and are consulted on early in the process, preventing late or unforeseen surprises that halt progress. In Denmark, the national government leads the planning process, setting out the future vision for the country. This vision is consulted on and debated publicly and in Parliament, often resulting in broad nationwide and political consensus about what forward progress should look like. The effect of this proactive vision-setting and planning process is that later approvals and construction is much more likely to progress to plan. In Singapore, the Ministry of National Development sets out the countryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s vision and priorities in collaboration with other key government agencies. These goals then inform the planning around key transportation corridors, housing develops, and other land uses. Early collaboration and clear goals mean that each agency knows its role in making the vision a reality
Successful nations become that way because they take coordinated actions to move towards collective goals
Yearbook 2020 and can trust that everyone is on the same page in working towards their goals. It also enables the government to take proactive action to enable its vision through aligning transportation and land use, reclaiming land where necessary, and coordinating current and near-term development to enable future plans. As time goes on, these countries continue to leave us behind. We spend more on housing than any other OECD country, yet we also have some of the highest rates of homelessness. Our labour productivity is not only flat, it has declined in comparison to the OECD average. Our overseas delegations have repeatedly shown us that New Zealand needs vision to bring about collective success. We don’t have a clear
vision for what we want to look like in 2050 or beyond. We have vague ideas about being sustainable, being productive, having healthy waters, or building warm and dry homes, but often these targets are little more than political promises without consensus or connection to local plans or
Finally, through lack of coordination, agencies and departments within the same tier of government struggle to work together to align their efforts. Coordination between local and central government is at best a mixed bag, and successful collaboration with local communities and
We spend more on housing than any other OECD country, yet we also have some of the highest rates of homelessness even other promises. Consensus, in either Parliament or the public discourse, around major projects and policies is rare, and any positive action we take is often impeded by groups who were not consulted or who do not share the unilateral goals of those in power.
businesses is rare. Establishing a national vision is key to addressing these challenges and setting us up for success in the future. Building a vision The government and us, as its people, should develop a collective vision for
New Zealand. This vision would set out the handful of broad and aspirational goals that we, as Kiwis, have for our country. These would set the priority areas and naturally lead to shorter-term, more specific, and more measurable targets It is rewarding therefore to see that the New Zealand Infrastructure Commission, Te Waihanga, is due to develop its first 30-year infrastructure plan by the end of 2021. In the absence of a national vision, this national infrastructure plan may have to be developed around versions (perhaps high, medium and no growth) of the status quo – hardly aspirational. We fully support the Commission’s strategy work, however infrastructure is just one tool to help New Zealand achieve its long term vision, it shouldn’t
Yearbook 2020 lead the vision or make up for the lack of one. The first challenge for this vision will be for government and us, as stakeholders, to support the vision. If this does not happen, it will become just another plan adding to the noise of plans, strategies, and documents. The Commission’s independence should give it the mana to make the ambitious statements that this country needs to hear, but only time will tell if they have succeeded to rise above the din of current promises, plans, and imper-
atives. However, the next and bigger challenge will be moving from vision to implementation. We may love the vision and support its outcomes, but what action will we take to make it reality? From goals to reality As identified earlier, there are five key features to develop world class infrastructure. The first is vision. The second is planning. Planning follows naturally from vision – it operationalises the goals and breaks
A clear vision for the future is not that difficult to get underway A national vision and a plan to get us there is paramount for New Zealand’s future health, happiness, and prosperity. Infrastructure NZ calls for the central government to provide a new, long term grant (funded from centrally collected taxes) to new regional bodies that represent a collaboration of existing local authorities. This would be a Regional Growth Partnership – a common tool used overseas (Australia has 13 city or regional growth partnerships similar to what we propose). We do not propose amalgamation of existing local bodies. Instead of taxes being shared 90/10, perhaps a new ratio might look like 85/15, in return for the concessions and alignment tools outlined below. The new regional body would have the local mayors, iwi representatives and the regional heads of key government bodies like NZTA, DHB, Kainga Ora, Ministry of Education and others at the governance table. A spatial plan for the region would incorporate local, regional and central government plans for schools, hospitals, commercial zones, transport, water and housing, knitting together local, regional and national priorities for the first time. The new long term grant would be linked to the
economic success of the region, providing the funding for new infrastructure (and other growth enhancing investments e.g. skills, innovation), the majority of which would flow back to central government in the form of GST, personal and corporate tax proceeds. A critical element in this new partnership is that the regional entity would enter into a central government rating tool called the Investor Confidence Rating (‘ICR’). The ICR is currently used to give central government departments a rating of A, B, C or D, reflecting how good they are at spending public money, measuring procurement, asset management and investment practises. NZTA is currently rated a ‘C’ on this measure and is given delegated authority to spend in line with this rating (a lower delegation than ‘A’ or ‘B’ rated entities). If, for example, a new Bay of Plenty Regional Growth Partnership was able to secure a ‘C’ rating it allows that entity to demonstrate it spends public money as well as NZTA, and that it is spending it on initiatives in the jointly agreed spatial plan. Infrastructure NZ believes a rating tool like the ICR is critical to enable trust, competence and transparency – the critical requirements for any partnership, let alone for the fraught relationship that has historically existing between central and local government. safetynews.co.nz
Yearbook 2020 them into a series of clearer and measurable targets that we can concretely work towards. And planning, as discussed, is one of our biggest weaknesses. Reforming the planning system entirely is the first and most crucial step to ensuring our vision is implemented. Reform begins with resource management reform that reorients our planning from an effects-based system to an outcomes-focused system. Outcomes would be established at a national level, through a nationally developed strategic plan for New Zealand’s future. This plan could itself be the Infrastructure Commission’s 30-year plan, or a similar process that develops national priorities that stakeholders agree to. Key planning would occur at a regional level, giving an appropriate balance to both local democracy and ownership as well as cross-regional coordination and efficiencies. Regional plans, including their own outcomes and targets, would be subsidiary to the national plan. Regional plans would set out the key infrastructure, develop-
Local government oversees nearly 40 percent of the country’s infrastructure, a similar proportion to central government. However, local government revenues are one tenth that of central government helped build and agreed to. Infrastructure and other matters that operate at a national scale (e.g., the rail network, the environment) would continue be planned at a national level. The third principle of world class infrastructure, appropriate funding and financing, would be essential to success for these reforms. Currently local government in New Zealand
Our financial model sets up local and central government to clash – economic growth benefits central government and causes the local government extra costs ments, and other land uses needed to reach regional goals. Regional plans would provide for local councils to oversee the local implementation of these plans within the confines of the regional plan that they 14
oversees nearly 40 percent of the country’s infrastructure (largely local roads and water services), a similar proportion to central government. (The balance of roughly 20 percent is held privately). However, local govern-
ment revenues are onetenth that of central government. Is it any wonder our local councils struggle to accommodate existing, let alone growing, populations? A successful planning system would need to fix this funding constraint. Central government’s revenues are aligned to economic growth and success. Local government is hampered by laws which only allow them to recover their costs and are then spread over its rating base. A common misconception is that if house prices rise, or businesses and individuals earn more money, that this generates more money for local government. In reality, councils only get more revenue when they levy more rates and they only levy more rates when they receive the support of their constituents to spend more money. This financial model means local government, despite good intentions, doesn’t reap any benefits from economic growth and
it struggles if its population declines because the same cost base has to be stretched over less ratepayers. Our financial model sets up local and central government to clash – economic growth benefits central government and causes the local government extra costs (to install the pipes and roads we need to support urban growth). Infrastructure NZ calls for the government funding model in New Zealand to change. Full details on the rationale and implementation for these reforms can be found in Infrastructure NZ’s recent report Building Regions: A vision for local government, planning law and funding reform. Infrastructure New Zealand is the peak industry body for the infrastructure sector that promotes best practice in national infrastructure development through research, advocacy and public and private sector collaboration.
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Time to toughen up and close the loopholes By Jerome Matthews Legal Consultant
Does Worksafe have the will to follow the lead of the Labour Inspectorate and prosecute company officers for offences committed by the company
he Labour Inspectorate continues to hold directors personally liable for labour law breaches. The Employment Relations Authority (ERA) recently has penalised Satyam Ltd and its director for breaching employment law. The ERA has ordered Satyam, which was operating a convenience store in Dunedin, to pay $18,000 in penalties, and its director, Sunilkumar Dalpatbhai Mistry, to personally pay a further $9,000 in penalties for negligent record keeping and holiday pay breaches. The penalties are in addition to $3,000 of infringement fees paid earlier for record keeping failures and more than $6,000 owed to five workers in unpaid holiday entitlements. The Labour Inspectorate investigated Satyam, in December 2017, as part of a proactive audit of retail operators. It found the employer failed to keep accurate time, wage and holiday records, and to pay workers time and a half for working on public holidays. The Labour Inspector issued an improvement notice requiring the employer to rectify their practices. Despite several engagements, the employer was still unable to demonstrate full compliance, and the Labour Inspectorate took the case to the ERA. The ERA found Mr Mistry directly responsible for the failures in that his actions were negligent and not consistent with the employer’s obligations of good faith. “The penalties send a clear message that employers cannot avoid their
obligations and that the Labour Inspectorate will seek personal accountability from directors,” says Labour Inspectorate Southern Regional Manager Jeanie Borsboom. Personal liability means individuals cannot avoid payments to the ERA even if they close their business. Over the past year, the Labour Inspectorate has taken 19 cases to the ERA or the Employment Court that resulted in company directors being found personally responsible for employment law breaches. This totalled to $259,083 in wage and holiday pay arrears to workers and $475,176 in penalties to be paid personally by the individuals. “Retail is a focus area for the Labour Inspectorate as the sector tends to employ many vulnerable workers, including migrants and young people on minimum or low wages,” says Borsboom “The employer’s half-hearted attempts to rectify their record keeping were not enough. This is not acceptable, especially given Mr Mistry is a director and shareholder of other companies. “Had the employer complied with the improvement notice within a reasonable timeframe, the penalties would have been avoided. These are obligations that employers must take seriously and if they do not have the necessary skills or resources, then they should seek professional advice and services,” says Borsboom. Satyam ceased trading from August 2018. Sunilkumar Dalpatbhai Mistry
is currently listed as the director and shareholder of three other companies that are trading as convenience stores: A1 Trade, Harinaman and Haricharan , which trades as the Rendezvous dairy. And now the case with Worksafe New Zealand The reader might like to compare this with a prosecution by Worksafe New Zealand where the sentencing exercise took place on 29 July 2019 with the sentence being delivered on 6 August. The defendant was a company called Supermac Group Resources. It had, from the reading of the report NZDC15023, a single director and shareholder, one Mr McIntyre. He was also the single director and shareholder of other companies within the group. Briefly, the facts were that an employee of the defendant company was catastrophically injured in the course of his work duties on 7 May 2016, while being engaged in the transportation of a mobile elevating work platform. He was rendered quadriplegic.
He will never walk again. He has back pain resulting from a spinal disc removal. He suffered 11 broken ribs and a punctured lung. His wrist was shattered and is now pinned with resulting restricted mobility. He has significant brain trauma which impacts upon his memory and vision. The agreed summary of facts recited that WorkSafe’s guidance on the transportation of MEWP’s required a harness/total restraint system and other personal protection equipment to be used for loading and unloading. The agreed summary stated that the defendant company did not require workers to use harnesses for loading and unloading thus exposing the victim to a serious risk of injury. In 2014 WorkSafe New Zealand issued a best practice guideline for Mobile elevating work platforms (MEWP) including (inter alia) the following: (a) The need when working in the MEWP to take steps to prevent falls and to use an appropriate harness system as someone could fall from the MEWP. (b) The method of unload-
Yearbook 2020 ing MEWP’s include making sure the operator is wearing the right personal protection equipment such as high visibility gear, gloves and a total restraint system. (c) Operators must wear a harness with self-propelled boom lifts (MEWP) because the platforms can tip suddenly when elevating or the operator can be catapulted out when driving. People using a boom type MEWP should normally use a full body harness and lanyard with a personal energy absorber. (d) The need for those using a harness to be competent in how to wear, use and secure it. On investigation it was established by WorkSafe that there was no harness available for use and the victim had never been provided with training in the use of a harness system. Further, Supermac Group Resources did not require workers to wear harnesses during loading and unloading of MEWPs and had only a basic written procedure on the loading and unloading of equipment at the time of the accident. Although [the victim] held a suitable driver’s licence he did not have qualifications for operating a boom lift, scissor lift or crane. Supermac Group Resources had no documented records of training for [the victim] although he had been deemed competent to load and unload plant. The MEWP was examined and found to be mechanically sound. The company was ordered to pay to the victim $100,000 emotional harm reparation together with $138,000 consequential loss; a fine of $304,750 and prosecution costs in an agreed amount of $7080. However, the defendant 18
company had been trading whilst insolvent and the Judge found that it was likely it would be wound up and the monies ordered to be paid would be unlikely to be paid and he could not force McIntyre or any other entity or person to make funds available to the defendant company. It is abundantly clear that the injured party will suffer financially due to the impecunity of the Supermac Group Resources. This begs the question will Worksafe New Zealand follow the lead of the Labour Inspectorate and charge the officers of a company for breaches of the Act, particularly where that company is a one-director, one-shareholder company where that director/shareholder is the very person with intimate knowledge of the day to day running of the company and its operations. Worksafe New Zealand does have that capability. The Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 which, incidentally, came into force on 4 April 2016, more than a month before this accident allows for the following. S44(1) of the Act provides “If a PCBU [Person Conducting a Business or Undertaking] has a duty or an obligation under this act, an officer of the PBCU must exercise due diligence to ensure that the PCBU complies with that duty or obligation.” S50 of the Act further provides “An officer of a PCBU may be convicted or found guilty of an offence against section 44 whether or not the PCBU has been convicted or found guilty of an offence under this Act relating to the duty or obligation.” S18(a)(i) of the Act Provides “In this Act, unless the
context otherwise requires, officer, in relation to a PCBU,— (a) means, if the PCBU is— (i) a company, any person occupying the position of a director of the company by whatever name called: and (b) includes any other person occupying a position in relation to the business or undertaking that allows the person to exercise significant influence over the management of the business or undertaking (for example, a chief executive);” The position is that had Worksafe New Zealand chosen to lay charges against McIntyre they would have been fully able so to do and they, more than likely, would have secured more than the hollow victory they achieved by only prosecuting the defendant company. There are a multitude of such companies in Australia and New Zealand possibly with their sole directors/ shareholders with a sense of false security in relation to their prosecution for work safety breaches. There have already been prosecutions in Australia of
corporate officers for such breaches and in October the Queensland Minister for Industrial Relations announced the first prosecution in Queensland for industrial manslaughter under the Queensland Work Health and Safety Act 2011. All corporate officers in New Zealand would be well advised to prepare themselves for what may be in the wind. Where Australia first treads so does New Zealand follow (and vice versa). Disclaimer: the content of this article is general in nature and not intended as a substitute for specific professional advice on any matter and should not be relied upon for that purpose. Jerome Matthews is a legal consultant who has worked in a number of jurisdictions including United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Australia and Philippines. He has acted as counsel in all courts including final appellate jurisdictions and was a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, London. You may contact him on matthewsj@ infrastructurebuild.com
New approach needed to create affordable housing News that New Zealand is the second least affordable place to buy a house, after Hong Kong, is sadly unsurprising, says Paul Blair
n January this year, Demographia released its annual report into housing affordability in Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Ireland, New Zealand, Singapore, the UK, and the USA. All eight New Zealand cities were assessed as severely unaffordable, as each had median house prices over five times their median income. Affordability is assessed by a ratio of three or lower. Unfortunately this news is no surprise. It confirms that the problem is New Zealand-wide, and not limited to large or fast-growing cities like Auckland. From Dunedin to Auckland, the challenge of building enough homes is an enormous problem. And it’s primarily because
councils are unable to pay for the infrastructure needed to bring down land prices. Local councils in New Zealand build and maintain almost 40 percent of this country’s infrastructure, primarily local roads, pipes, and sewers, which is about the same amount as the central government looks after. But local councils only have one tenth the amount of money to spend on it compared to central government. As our towns and cities grow, central government enjoys the benefit of this economic growth, while councils are legally restricted to only recovering their costs. Council debt constraints add to this problem and
mean that councils are unable to invest in public transit, roads, and pipes where 85 percent of New Zealanders live. Infrastructure New Zealand’s Building Regions report proposes a series of partnership agreements between central government and local councils, grouped around regional spatial plans. Central government doesn’t have direct land use powers under the current resource management system, so local government’s ‘bottom-up’ ability to influence land use must be enabled. In return for central government providing local councils with a new, longterm share of national taxes, local councils can free up infrastructure-serviced land
for housing in a way that meets central and local objectives for better housing affordability and choice. Incentivising local councils with a share of the dividends from economic growth so they can invest in infrastructure to create more economic growth and free up land for housing just makes sense. After all, it is central government who pays the bill when unaffordable housing puts people on the street, forces people live in damp homes, or eats away at the savings that people should have. Our unaffordable homes are making us poorer, less equal, and less efficient. The longer this housing crisis continues, the greater the costs to New Zealand and New Zealanders. safetynews.co.nz
Office, retail and industrial sectors look forward to another solid year By Chris Dibble Director Research & Communications with Colliers International email@example.com
Bright outlook for diversified office market Positive economic conditions driven by population gains and high employment rates have delivered another year of solid activity in the office property sector. This is forecast to continue
ifficulties for occupiers searching for suitably available prime space ready for occupation is an ongoing trend, which is enabling a supply response from developers. Refurbishment, strengthening, repositioning and new build activity is underway, but challenging construction sector conditions mean the pace of new space becoming available has not always met expectations. In many central office hotspots, conditions are tight, but there are opportunities for tenants to consider, more depending on the level of tenant flexibility.
The key occupiers driving office sector growth continue to be the FIRE sectors (finance, insurance and real estate) as well as local and central government. The contribution from technology-related services is also growing. Many tenants searching for space remain focused on traditional forms of leasing. However, the rise in coworking, serviced office space and other variations â&#x20AC;&#x201C; focusing on the SME and start-up sectors â&#x20AC;&#x201C; have proven popular. Colliers International APAC research shows this sector accounts for
between two percent and nine per cent of total office space in major cities. It is no surprise that the locations facing the most imbalance between demand and supply are where average prime face rents are escalating the fastest. Current growth rates of between three percent and five percent per cent per annum are above long-term averages, especially in a low inflation environment. Insurance costs are rising in some cities. Incentives are available for the best tenants offering the best terms. The high cost of fit-outs has seen a renewed focus
Auckland and Wellington overall vacancy rates
in this area, especially in centres where construction sector constraints are high. While many locations are experiencing strong growth, there are options for tenants to pursue to reduce the impact of rising rents and operating expenses. Shorter lease terms are an area we are seeing tenants chase, perhaps in response to new IFRS requirements as well as reducing long-term commitments. Investors remain confident and are focused on economic and property drivers, the ability to increase cashflow through negotiations and/or asset repositioning, lower interest costs and pent-up purchaser demand. The rejection of a more comprehensive capital gains tax earlier in the year has also been a key motivator. The global hunt for higher returns has seen more active offshore purchasers and adds depth to our transactional activity. Overall, the outlook for offices remains solid, supported by our net positive survey responses in the latest Colliers International Investor Confidence Survey. safetynews.co.nz
his provides a supportive base and positive outlook for retail real estate in New Zealand. In the year to June 2019, approximately $95 billion of retail trade in â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;bricks and mortarâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; properties took place. This is up almost four percent compared to the previous year. The biggest winners were in non-discretionary sectors, with consumers more selective in their discretionary spend, an ongoing trend over the past decade. With a solid base in place, forecasts remain for further growth and expansion. Evidence of this is the latest medium-term employment forecasts from MBIE. The retail trade sector is forecast to grow by an additional 19,829 workers between 2018 and 2023, representing annual growth of 1.6 percent a year, comparable to the annual average growth for all industry groups. The variance in retailer vacancy rates by asset type and location continues. Retail premises without a supportive retail mix in an underperforming catchment are experiencing the most testing conditions. Destination retail centres with a customer-centric strategy providing entertainment and leisure experiences continue to receive the most enquiry, no matter the location. Nationally, consenting activity has reduced from recent highs, but the total value continues to rise. This highlights the elevation in customer requirements and the extent of works that developers and landlords face in retail. Variances between demand and supply provide the guidance for rental performance for landlords, but 22
Non-discretionary sectors lead a buoyant retail property market Physical retail stores in New Zealand capture more than 90 percent of all retail sales and spending continues to edge up on an annual basis Auckland and Wellington overall vacancy rates
tenants in many precincts across the country still face annual rental rate rises. While investor confidence in the sector remains supportive, investment yields have firmed slightly or have been relatively flat over the past 12 months. This has not reduced the proportion
of deal flow in the sector. Our analysis of commercial and industrial sales data shows purchasing interest remains strong for retail assets, with just under 30 percent of all 2019 transactions in the retail sector. This is up slightly on previous years.
With almost $1 billion in retail assets transacting in 2019 so far, and many more large retail deals to be completed, the outlook for retail investment remains solid. We forecast investors to remain vigilant in their due diligence
Substantial depth in the industrial market bodes well Many favour the defensive characteristics and positive aspects supporting the growth of the industrial sector
t the heart of the industrial sector, goods-producing industries such as manufacturing and construction now account for around one-fifth of New Zealand’s $300 billion economy, according to Statistics New Zealand. However, this is boosted by other services such as transport, warehousing and postal services, an industry showing another year of growth. Additional depth comes from rising public infrastructure spend. Employment levels in the industrial sector are solid, and latest forecasts from MBIE show further strong gains over the next few years. This supports the absorption of industrial land and buildings. In the North Island, the ‘Golden Triangle’ between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga will continue to rise as a popular occupier,
Auckland and Wellington overall vacancy rates
owner-occupier and investor destination. T he interconnection of population, ports and infrastructure is a strong driver for the sector. Land availability at suitable prices to be profitable was an ongoing battle in 2019 requiring plenty of careful consideration. Experienced and well-funded stakeholders are looking to capitalise in this space and forge on
with developments. Hawke’s Bay, Rotorua, Palmerston North and New Plymouth are showing positive signs in leasing activity. Prime premises are understandably the most desired, creating hotspots of activity. New construction is apparent, but typically caters for pre-committed enquiry in the larger markets. Wellington’s industrial sector continues to forge ahead, but more new-build activity is needed to alleviate supply shortages. Access to new precincts could reduce the imbalances, but new infrastructure connections are needed. In the South Island, Christchurch’s industrial sector’s ongoing recalibration provides a more balanced demand and supply profile which has seen rent remain relatively steady over the past few years. The lack of available development sites in Queenstown and Dunedin as well as the pressure on existing
sites continue to push rents higher. From a sales perspective, the industrial sector accounts for approximately 50 percent of all commercial and industrial sales activity annually in New Zealand. This provides investors with plenty of entry and exit opportunities. Further, rising rents, limited incentives and pent-up investor demand are driving average prime yields down, now typically ranging between five percent and 6.5 percent but some are below. Purchaser interest is growing for well-positioned, add-value secondary premises. Colliers International Research’s Investor Confidence Survey shows respondent expectations for industrial next year remain as strong as ever. Therefore, the outlook under current conditions showcases another positive year ahead. safetynews.co.nz
Essential reading for 2020 The Wuhan Coronavirus Outbreak: What does it mean for real estate? The outbreak of the Wuhan Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) â&#x20AC;&#x201C; which began in December 2019 and has intensified in the first few weeks of 2020 - poses a new downside risk to the Greater China and, to a lesser degree, global economy. cbre.com/research-and-reports/Greater-China-ViewPoint---The-Wuhan-Coronavirus-Outbreak-What-Does-it-Mean-for-Real-Estate
40+ Corporations Working On Autonomous Vehicles Beyond trendy names like Tesla and Alphabet chasing self-driving cars, a host of auto brands and other tech heavyweights are also investing in autonomous R&D. Private companies working in auto tech are attracting record levels of deals and funding, with autonomous driving startups leading the charge. Along with early-stage startups, VCs, and other investors, large corporations are also angling to get a slice of the self-driving pie. cbinsights.com/research/autonomous-driverless-vehicles-corporations-list/
The Top 10 Vulnerabilities Used by Cybercriminals in 2019 With new vulnerabilities emerging all the time, patching every single thing is out of the question. So, how can you prioritize your efforts without all of the facts? Recorded Future researchers have scoured thousands of sources to uncover the vulnerabilities that cybercriminals actively exploited the most in 2019. Our annual vulnerability report details the year-over-year changes in vulnerability trends and more. go.recordedfuture.com/vulnerability-report-2019
8 Best Industries for Starting a Business in 2020 Inc. has spent the past couple months speaking with industry experts and crunching the latest data to create our report on the Best Industries of 2020: a detailed breakdown of the eight industries most primed for great new entrants and a breakout year. inc.com/best-industries-2020.html
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New Zealand Construction Sector Training Programme Surveys continue to show that while construction and infrastructure workloads have increased growth across New Zealand, an acute skill shortage is creating bottlenecks that threaten the viability of the sector
ew Zealand needs a skilled, sustainable construction workforce to ensure the sector has the people it needs now and into the future, with estimates that the construction industry will need an extra 50,000 workers by 2022. To meet the growing demand for skills, industry professionals must play their part in developing and upskilling their workforce. In order to help industry leaders take positive action and future-proof their workforce so that their companies are not left behind, The Royal Institution
of Chartered Surveyors has recently launched the RICS New Zealand Construction Sector Training Program: a unique program designed for quantity surveyors and construction professionals looking to build their professional skills and commercial expertise. The training programâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s face-to-face sessions run across the lifecycle of construction projects focusing on core RICS Pathway Competences in Quantity Surveying and Construction. Individual courses include: - Key Construction Con-
tracts NZS3910 - Construction Conflict Avoidance and Dispute Resolution - Procurement and Tendering - Advanced Cost Planning and Estimating - Negotiation Skills in Construction - Managing Change â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Variations - Delay and Disruption - Project Financial Control - Contract Administration The training program can be taken by individuals in your company or as a comprehensive development program for a construction team, customised to your
specific requirements for added value. The sessions are designed to be interactive and practical and will be delivered by experienced RICS Chartered Professionals with local and international experience. RICS is committed to helping the New Zealand construction sector build its workforce capability and capacity. To book an upcoming workshop for you or your team, please contact Mike Stevens in the RICS Training team: +64 27 425 1633 or email@example.com.
Maxmise opportunity across the construction sector New Zealand Construction Sector Training Programme launched The RICS Construction and Infrastructure Surveys show that construction and infrastructure workloads continue to increase across New Zealand, however, acute skills and labour shortages persist. To meet the growing demand for skills and ensure the industry is prepared for what the future will bring, industry professionals must play their part in developing and upskilling their workforce. Quantity surveying and construction professionals can adapt and remain proactive in this market by attending this new suite of training. Gain the critical knowledge and skills required to build commercial expertise, reduce risk, increase capacity and maximise opportunity across the construction sector.
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Facilities management at design phase is a positive A recent report makes the case for involving facilities management (FM) professionals early in the building design phase
he report, jointly funded by the Facilities Management Association of New Zealand (FMANZ) and the BRANZ Building Research Levy, the Facilities Management Industry Census, found that early engagement of FM practitioners in planning and development, particularly in relation to building whole-of-life performance as well as whole-of-life costs, has potential to add significant value. Early FM engagement contributes towards the three realms of building quality – functionality, durability and performance. FM practitioners use their operational knowledge to ensure buildings are designed in a way that can be sustainably and safely managed, the 28
report says. Problems with building quality have long been documented,” says FMANZ chief executive Gillian Wess. “This report suggests that early involvement from facilities managers in the design phase provides an avenue to positively influence the functionality, durability and performance of buildings and save money.” Practitioners and purchasers both recognised that early pre-occupancy engagement of facilities managers in the development of new facilities was relatively uncommon. However, there is growing emphasis on the value of FM in the design of a facility, taking into account the operational requirements for maintenance, the needs
of users and considerations around how the space is used. “There is considerable effort in pushing this practice under the banner of ‘soft landings’, in which FMs are involved from design through to occupancy, ensuring a soft landing when the building is occupied. The premise of this approach included reduced operational costs for facilities through a focus on whole of life costs.” Several participants identified that typical building procurement practice effectively prevented such an approach, "as upfront costs were over-emphasised in tendering processes, to the detriment of building quality and operational expenditure".
When FMs were engaged early, it was the result of specific circumstances, generally strong economic drivers that took account of whole-of-life costs and quality. This was often evident in the Private-Public Partnership model in which the private organisation responsible for delivering the facility was also responsible for the ongoing operation of the facility. In some cases, these private organisations were responsible for handing over the building free of defects at the end of their contract term, typically 25 years. Participants noted that compared to traditional procurement, this creates strong incentive for specifying more durable materials
Yearbook 2020 such as claddings. Other circumstances leading to FM involvement included long-term building occupiers with a financial stake in the building or fitout. The facilities managers interviewed by the authors had been involved in various stages of development prior to occupancy. Their initial input was into the design brief, using their understanding of building occupants to inform technical requirements for the building. This includes mode of working, habits, density, electrical loading and consideration of operational needs such as cleaning cupboards or loading docks. Facilities managers also play an intermediary role between the design team and occupants. This is a bidirectional function, turning occupant behaviours and expressed desires into technical requirements and communicating the functional design elements to occupants as well as setting appropriate expectations of the new facility. This was identified as being effective in improving quality by reducing the need for post occupancy adjustments or retrofit, which are common in new facilities due to misunderstanding of occupant requirements by designers or misunderstanding of the design by occupants. In the detailed design stage, facilities managers provided input into product choices with particular consideration of how occupants will use the space and features; what maintenance and renewal activities will be required and how they will be performed; how products will perform with respect to durability and energy efficiency. There was a strong theme
of seeking the operational expertise of facilities managers to assist embedding maintenance into the design, in order to reduce operational costs and give effect to safety in design principles. “Through the detailed design stage, FM input ensures that durability and performance requirements can be feasibly met and supported through maintenance,” the report says. “As new facilities progress into occupancy, facilities managers in their traditional operational role manage the performance and durability into the long term.” The report suggests that greater implementation of early FM engagement could be achieved through greater professionalism of the industry, greater awareness of its value amongst purchasers, and adoption of advanced procurement models which recognise whole of life costs. “Procurement models with a heavy focus on upfront cost are a strong barrier at present but these are being investigated by the Industry Transformation Agenda and the BRANZ quality research programme.”
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FMANZ Gillian Wess, firstname.lastname@example.org 021 284 2440 BRANZ Anne Duncan, email@example.com 027 545 7764 The Facilities Management Association of New Zealand (FMANZ) represents New Zealand's community of Facilities Management professionals and supports education, networking and knowledge sharing
Blended learning Save time with the Red Cross blended pre-course learning approach
he NZ Red Cross First Aid App now provides you with pre-course learning, which goes towards successful completion of an NZQA accredited first aid certificate. With guided interactive learning, including videos and animations, use the app to learn and understand the basics of first aid. Complete the app learning by fully reading the ‘Learn’ section and successfully completing the app tests. Unlock badges along the way to record your achievements. Learn at a time and location that is convenient for you and reduce time spent away from work. Once you have completed your pre-course learning,
book your skills workshop to complete your training. Face-to-face workshops Attend the practical skills workshop with a NZ Red Cross instructor to gain your certification. - Learn how to apply DRSABCD - Practise CPR on adult, child and infant manikins - Hands-on scenarios - Learn how to use an AED - Practical assessments E-learning options All the app badges must be unlocked prior to attending the skills workshop. Bring your phone or tablet to verify your achievement. • Unit Standards 6402, 6401 and 6400 (equivalent to comprehensive
first aid) Workplace First Aid app pre course learning + 8 hours skills workshop • Unit Standards 6402 and 6401 (equivalent to essential first aid) Practical First Aid app pre course learning + 4 hours skills workshop • First aid revalidation: Workplace Revalidation app pre course learning + 4 hours skills workshop
What is E-learning? E-learning enables learners to gain knowledge across several learning platforms. Some of the content and interactions are accessed on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. E-learners can then use this technology in their own time and place and at their own speed – anywhere and anytime. Is E-learning a recognised learning pathway? Yes it is. Research shows that people use mobile devices more frequently today than personal computers, using their devices to access the internet for information as and
when required. Mobile devices using apps often do not require access to the internet as the learning content is stored within the device. There are numerous published papers that support the view that learning within this mobile environment is well controlled, ensuring the learner has access to accurate information. There is also evidence that the learner feels more confident in their own environment working at their own pace. The app provides emergency information in a succinct and easy-to-use format as well as being a useful first aid learning tool.
Available Courses • App - Essential First Aid: Complete your precourse learning using the First Aid and Emergency App followed by a 4-hour classroom session • Online - Essential First Aid: Complete your online pre-course learning followed by a 4-hour classroom session. • App - Comprehensive First Aid: Complete your pre-course learning using the First Aid and Emergency App followed by an 8-hour classroom session. • Online - Comprehensive First Aid: Complete your online pre-course learning followed by an 8-hour classroom session. • App - First Aid Revalidation: Complete your precourse learning using the First Aid and Emergency App followed by a 4-hour classroom session • Online - First Aid Revalidation: Complete your online pre-course learning followed by a 4-hour classroom session. redcross.org.nz/ corporate-bookings/ blended_learning
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Loss of blue collar skilled workers looming Political pressures among growing concerns for employers of blue collar and seasonal staff
ncome, skills and diversity are set to be the key labour market issues in 2020 according to OneStaff, New Zealand’s largest provider of temporary and permanent onsite staffing for the industrial and commercial industries. OneStaff says the past 12 months has shown the employment market performing as expected with growth in seasonal peaks, rather than consistent growth all year long.
“The market has settled into one with seasonal peaks which is a consistent trend under a Labour-led government rather than the more consistent growth curve without the seasonality which is a trend observed under a National-led government,” says Group General Manager Jonathon Ives. “Although the race is run differently by each party, often the results are similar as far as market activity goes.
Yearbook 2020 It’s the same workforce and industry engine pushing the job market forward.” Skill Shortages Seasonal demand will push a greater percentage of immigration to the warmer months in line with the demand for blue collar workers. The shortage of skills creates tension for the forward planning of projects, particularly larger infrastructure projects. It increases uncertainty in the timeframe for work delivery, but these shortages also highlight areas of the labour market that are ripe for opportunity. OneStaff holds that 2019 saw sectors such as building and construction, and their associated industry bodies, become more proactive in their marketing to attract people entering the workforce. This, coupled with the Labour government’s willingness to support vocational training, will increase the industrial and commercial workforce in 2020. While the immigrant skillset is certainly needed to cover the gaps, more skilled industries face a disparity between overseas wages and those in New Zealand. This will cause homegrown talent to look offshore for better pay and conditions. We are anticipating more skilled New Zealand workers leaving the country. The net result is that while there will be enough skilled people to get the work done in New Zealand, there will be no meaningful growth in wages to attract more, and more qualified, people into blue collar roles. “Enterprising businesses will continue to look outside the usual channels for people with particular specialised skillsets and instead
seek people with softer skillsets – but are more flexible and willing to adapt and retrain as needed,” says Ives. “Businesses which are more flexible in their staffing requirements such as the hospitality sector, will see some skill shortages at least stop-gapped for now, or even reduced over time.” Minimum wage increases OneStaff also believes the current Labour-led trend of minimum wage increases will cause wage compression and reduce upskilling throughout businesses, with a flow on effect where costs are passed on through the sales cycle. Industries will compete for similarly cost matched individuals, on playing fields that are not similarly matched in terms of entry pre-requisites. This will cause skill shortages to worsen in some sectors, such as skilled tradespeople with higher requirements for entry into their fields. “In simple terms this means that people in a skilled role are now being paid close to, or the same as, people in an unskilled role, killing incentives for them to further upskill for more qualified work. Why would someone take on more accountability and responsibility in their job when there is minimal difference in reward for doing so?” says Ives. Diversity OneStaff’s What’s my Rate Survey reviewed employment trends in 2018 and provided a key piece of analysis for businesses looking to attract and retain staff – increase diversity. More specifically, a focus on increasing gender diversity across all industries and closing the gender
wage gap. While OneStaff predicts the gender wage gap to decrease in 2020, the company sees this as an issue that persisted through 2019, and one that won’t go away for some time. Last year’s results showed a median gender wage difference across all industries but highlighted construction as a key industry with the most variation, at the time it held a $5 hourly difference between men and women. “In 2020 we believe the efforts by the construction industry to recruit and retain more women will increase representation and reduce gender inequity. As women progress into higher paying roles through experience and as the larger cohort of male dominated roles reduces over time, we believe we will track progressively better in this space into and through 2020. “In fact, we think we may see the gap narrow in more industries than just construction,” says Ives. Election year Ives believes that income, skills, and diversity will continue to be dominant issues for discussion by both sides of the political spectrum in the run up to the general election. “Social wellbeing is tout-
ed as the primary driver of this coalition government and there are a number of tweaks to how workers are treated and remunerated that will play out over the coming year. 2020 will see some of these pressures, like increased minimum wage, affect the employment market,” says Ives. “There will absolutely be increased analysis of whether Labour’s social contract has worked and will allow its momentum to continue, or if public sentiment has changed to be more favourable to National. What is critical to the job market is how positive both business and employee confidence is based on government policies and outlooks.”
Jonathon Ives Group General Mgr jon.ives@onestaff. co.nz 027 222 8818 safetynews.co.nz
Self-driving buses and shuttles in time for the World Cup A cutting-edge fleet of self-driving Level 4 electric shuttles will usher in a new era of urban mobility in Qatar’s capital city Doha by 2022
Understanding the jargon - Driverless Car (DC), - Autonomous Vehicle (AV), - Self Driving Car (SDC), - Self Driving Vehicle (SDV), - Highly Automated Vehicle (HAV) - Automated Driving Systems (ADS) - Self driving system (SDS) There is NO abbreviation for a truly autonomous car that cannot be easily used for lesser capability vehicles
he Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) and Volkswagen will work together to develop the required physical and digital infrastructure to seamlessly launch the world's first emission-free, electric and autonomous public transport system in time for the world’s biggest sporting event "For our cities to progress we need a new wave of innovation. AI-enabled, emission-free transportation technologies will help advance urban mobility, while diminishing congestion and improving energy efficiency," says QIA chief executive Al Mahmoud. "We are proud that QIA has been able to partner with Volkswagen to ensure that Qatar is at the forefront of these new technologies. The development of a smart transport solution will help transform the future of urban mobility." The initiative, which is known as "Project Qatar Mobility", will create a holistic ecosystem for autonomous driving, including the creation of an appropriate legal framework, smart city infrastructure and transfer 34
of knowledge, which can be used as a blueprint to transform urban mobility around the world. Fostering a cross-brand collaboration as blueprint for future autonomous driving solutions, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, Scania, MOIA and AID (Autonomous Intelligent Driving) will play an important role in this project. Volkswagen Group's units AID and MOIA will provide the SDS (Self Driving System) knowledge and the app software to run the service.
The 35 autonomous, electric ID. BUZZ AD from Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles will shuttle up to four passengers on semifixed routes, while 10 hightech Scania buses will pick up larger groups. Closed testing of the shuttle vehicles and buses is expected to begin in 2020 and trials will start as early as 2021. The project will go live during 2022, providing a technical showcase of future autonomous driving. "Project Qatar Mobility will play a very important role in our Strategy Togeth-
er 2025+,” says Dr Herbert Diess, Chairman of Volkswagen. “Addressing the economic growth, social development, and environmental management challenges identified as part of our vision and underlines our commitment to investing in next generation mobility. “We will be experiencing real-world learnings and use the project as a stepping stone for generations to come." Within the Volkswagen Group, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles (VWCV)
Yearbook 2020 is responsible for Autonomous Driving, Mobility as a Service (MaaS) and Transport as a Service (TaaS), due to the fact the first uses are planned in the commercial sector. In future, VWCV will therefore be developing and producing corresponding Special Purpose Vehicles (SPV), such as robo-taxis and robo-vans. "Utilising the Bulli of tomorrow with the autonomous driving system currently being developed by AID, adding the intelligent ride-pooling from MOIA and enabling it to be booked via an app – thus beginning the future of urban transport, says, Dr Thomas Sedran, chairman of the Board of VWCV. “CO2 neutral mobility combined with SDS technology for maximum efficiency and safety. In this way we are transporting an entire society, with all its requirements for clean, intelligent and sustainable mobility. “VWCV is becoming an integrated mobility provider. Autonomous Driving is the key issue for the transformation of our core business." Henrik Henriksson, President and CEO of Scania says: "At Scania, our purpose is to drive the shift to sustainable transport. In the coming years, technological and infrastructural progress in electric and autonomous vehicles will be key enablers in that shift. “With regards to people transport, a higher degree of sharing is also important and through advances in autonomous transport it will be simpler to introduce more flexibility in shared people transport. “It is exciting to play a role in cutting edge projects like this one in Qatar."
The players Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) Qatar Investment Authority is the sovereign wealth fund of the State of Qatar. QIA is structured to operate at the very highest levels of global investing. As a world-class investor, QIA adheres to the strictest financial and commercial disciplines. QIA seeks socially, economically, and environmentally responsible investments and looks beyond shortterm returns. Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is responsible for the development, construction and sales of light commercial vehicles. In 2018, the brand shipped around 500,000 vehicles. https://www.facebook.com/ VolkswagenNutzfahrzeugeMeinWerk/ Scania Scania is a provider of sustainable transport solutions and is part of the project that is exploring opportunities
for autonomous people transport in the context of mobility solutions in Doha, Qatar. MOIA A subsidiary of the Volkswagen Group, develops mobility services and works in partnership with cities and local public transport operators.Currently developing and implementing a ridepooling system to use the road infrastructure more efficiently.. MOIA started its on-demand bus service in Hannover and Hamburg. AID-Autonomous Intelligent Driving AID is the Centre of Excellence for the development of level 4 autonomous driving in urban environments for the whole VW Group, bringing together the world's top software, robotics, AI and automotive talents to build a self-driving system. The AID team has presently over 260 experts from 47 different nations. safetynews.co.nz
obust but unobtrusive technologies should be designed into public spaces right from the outset, says leading New Zealand public spaces security and technology supplier, HTS Group. “We’ve passed the days where security technologies need to stick out like a sore thumb. Nowadays, they can blend in effortlessly with the surrounding space, and yet still have the strength to stop trucks weighing several tonnes and travelling at speed,” says Noel Maharaj, HTS Group Managing Director and licensed New Zealand Security Consultant. “New Zealand has seen terrible events in recent years, where a deranged individual has taken control of a vehicle and sought to cause maximum damage to people and property in public areas,” said Maharaj. “Simple and effective technologies like bollards, street furniture, barriers and gates can protect public areas, without impacting on the aesthetics or functionality of the space. In some cases, they can even add new functionality and features to the area – such as seats or flower beds,” he says. “It’s important to consider when a public space is going to be utilised to its full potential. Times like New Year’s Eve or special events are a good example of this. Are all possible vehicle entry points secured? Could someone drive a car or truck through and access a highly populated space?” “Enquiries for safety and security technologies have trebled worldwide in recent years, as companies, governments and organisations are becoming more aware of security risks evident globally, and how to miti36
Planning for terrorist and vehicle attacks on public spaces Major events with large crowds draw attention to the risks of having public open spaces unprotected by security and safety technologies to prevent vehicle attacks gate against them.” Public space risk mitigation technologies Ranging from standard bollards and street furniture, right through to advanced speed gates with integrated controls, different technologies are designed to protect public and private spaces from unauthorised personnel that may intend to cause harm. Selecting the right equipment is vital to mitigate against threats. The right equipment, targeted to a particular area and application, can help prevent or minimise casualties and injuries that result from
malicious activities. Security technologies that blend in with architectural layouts – such as planters, seats and bollards – provide an elegant, secure and functional solution. Street Furniture, which ensures pedestrian safety without discouraging movement through the area. Bollards, which are a cost-effective, versatile and easily installed security measure to protect crowded spaces and businesses situated near roads. They can be ground- or surface-mounted and static or automatic, depending on the application and what type of vehicles they are
preventing. HTS Group Ltd and Ezi Security have a wide range of security bollards designed to provide heavy-duty maximum security against ram raids and other hostile vehicle situations, while maintaining aesthetic separation for pedestrian safety. The latest and most advanced Safetyflex bollards only require an installation depth of 200mm for the same crash rating as comparative products requiring a far deeper installation, which makes them simpler and faster to install. Horizontal Lifting Barriers, which are one of the
Sponsored Article toughest hostile vehicle protection technologies available. These machines are capable of fully stopping a 7.5 -tonne truck driving at up to 80kmph. HTS Group Ltd, through a long-term relationship with Ezi Security Systems, supplies barriers with lower arms, to ensure that the initial impact on small passenger vehicles occurs at the front of the vehicle, slowing or stopping the vehicle before the upper barrier arm impacts the passenger compartment. Most other designs, without a lower arm, would hit at windshield level sheering off the top half of a smaller vehicle, which is more likely to be driven by a non-threatening innocent motorist. Barriers are an effective method of keeping public and private spaces separate and ensuring, even during special events, that only authorised personnel enter private property and restricted areas. Fencing, which is a standard component at most sites, industrial, commercial and public spaces. Steel posts and barbed wire are enough to stop most trespassers, but some key locations require greater security and protection, especially from vehicular assaults. The new generation of crash fences are designed to protect perimeters from accidental, terrorist or criminal attacks from malicious individuals. These crash fences can form a second barrier behind the existing decorative fencing around the facility providing the required level of protection. Vehicle Security Gates, which have evolved in response to greater security requirements internationally, changing from
standard gate products to impact-rated vehicle gates designed to withstand impact from vehicles weighing as much as 7,500 kilograms running at 48 kph to 80kph. The requirement for a shallow footing in many locations excludes many products. However, the patented arrestor system featured in HTS Group’s Truck Stopper range of gates can provide the lowest penetration classification for its class with a shallow foundation, making it an ideal engineering solution for protection against hostile vehicles. Identifying the threat “The security industry is rapidly changing, both in response to global threats, and in a pre-emptive nature, to safeguard against new threats that haven’t yet been realised. We’re seeing a strong trend towards advanced technologies such as perimeter security enhancements while maintaining the open space feel,” says Maharaj. “Determining the kind of threat that an establishment or space may be faced with is the most important first step in hostile vehicle mitigation. It means the technology can target the most likely threats and provide the best countermeasures,” he says.
Safetyflex Bollards are an effective anti-terror measure to prevent vehicle attacks in public spaces Crash-rated street furniture, can add to the functionality and aesthetics of a public space, whilst simultaneously preventing vehicles from entering certain areas
Automated or fixed bollards provide a visually unobtrusive barrier between public and private spaces, as well as deterring vehicle-borne attackers
HTS Group Ltd provides a design, system integration, installation and maintenance package to the transportation, traffic engineering, parking and sports timing industries in New Zealand, Australia and the Pacific Islands. Noel Maharaj Managing Director +64 (9) 634 7128 firstname.lastname@example.org www.htsgroup.co.nz
Barriers and gates provide a physical separation between public and private spaces, as well as a visual deterrent to vehicle-borne assailants safetynews.co.nz
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Coworking space will impact all facets of work expectations From fortune 500 companies to freelancers and digital nomads, coworking spaces have transformed the way people from every walk of life work and collaborate
o really understand the state of coworking space and its impact on modern society, we’ve compiled 32 of the most illuminating statistics on coworking spaces in 2019, from market size, growth projections, to the main benefits workers feel they get by working in these flexible workspaces. Global Coworking Space Race In 2019, Asia Pacific had the largest number of coworking spaces (11,592), followed by EMEA (6,850), Americas (6,293), then United Kingdom (5,923). Globally, the number of coworking spaces is forecast to almost double to 49,500 by 2022, from 26,000 in 2017. China will grow rapidly and become one of the world’s largest coworking markets by 2022, with over 5,000 spaces. Though not quite as large in terms of absolute market size, India is posed to become one of the fastest growing regions for coworking, buoyed by its large startup ecosystem that ranks the 3rd largest in the world. 5.1 million Coworking Users by 2022 The number of coworking members worldwide leaped from 1.74 million in 2015 to 3.1 million in 2019. With the
average annual growth rate of 24.2%, the 2022 forecast stands at a whopping 5.1 million coworking members. Think about this. It means by 2022, there will be over 5.1 million workers that will no longer call a regular office (or home) their main workplace. Vertical Expansion the Top Trend for Coworking Spaces In 2019, the trend for coworking operators is to expand their existing facilities to accommodate more members (instead of more locations). This is followed by a stronger focus on sustainability, consolidation, more community events, and an increase in niche
Meanwhile, the number of members from enterprise companies rose by 360%. Some of the major corporations that have made the WeWork coworking spaces their home are Microsoft, GE, Dell, Spotify, Pinterest, Sprint, and HSBC. Who’s Using Coworking Spaces? The largest age group for coworkers is 25 to 29, followed closely by 30 to 34. Researchers predict a dramatic increase in older and married people flocking to coworking spaces in the next few years. As expected, freelancers still make up a greater part of coworking members at 41%. The number of coworking members from
81% of coworking spaces with at least 200 members are profitable coworking spaces. More corporations will start to utilize coworking spaces as well. Coworking is no longer just for Freelancers and Startups WeWork, one of the world’s leading coworking space chains, reported a 90% increase in the number of enterprise companies utilizing their services in 2017.
corporations is right on its tail however, at 36%. 51% of the European coworking members are freelancers while 56% of the Asian members are corporate employees. The stats for the US is relatively balanced at 37% freelancers and 35% employees. As for the members’ professions, members who are working in IT come in at 22%. This is followed by PR
(14%) and writing (9%). In terms of personality types that frequent coworking spaces: - 30% identify themselves as extroverts - 22% as introverts - 47% as ambiverts. Coworking Makes People Happier This should come as no surprise, but most people who join coworking report feeling more social, productive, and ultimately, happier. Here are the statistics that back this. According to an extensive survey done in 2018, 89% of coworking users report that they are happier since joining a coworking space, while 83% said that they feel less lonely. 86% of coworkers feel that they are part of a community when working in a coworking space, which corroborates with another study that says the majority of coworkers feel happier since joining. And get this, 54% said that they socialize with other members outside of the coworking space after work and during weekends. Ultimately, 80% said that having other coworking members to interact with is the thing that they liked most in a coworking space. Coworking Leads to Better Connections Apart from the social aspect, many people join coworking spaces to forge new business connections and be more productive, by immersing themselves with talent from a broad range of related industries. It seems to be working. By coworking, 82% of surveyed members say it has expanded their professional networks.
Chemical industry leads by example
The chemical industry continues to lead by example, helping to ensure essential chemicals encountered at work and at home are safely managed - safeguarding employees, communities and our environment
hile 130,000 businesses are reportedly captured by the Hazardous Substances and Major Hazard Facilities regulations, the official mantra of “600-900 persons seriously harmed each year by unwanted exposure to chemicals in their workplace” presumably applies to all of the country’s 530,000 workplaces. Downgrading the flawed but effective HSNO Certified Handler requirement has inadvertently undermined an invaluable capability. The action deprived businesses, particularly SMEs, of an immediate and recognisable source of workplace chemical safety and compliance advice -a safe chemical handling capability and emergency response knowledge – critical when a chemical incident occurs. PCBUs and SMEs must now devise their own solutions to ensure employees are competent to safely handle the chemicals with which they work.
So where to from here?
Responsible Care is a global voluntary chemical industry initiative developed autonomously by the chemical industry for the chemical industry. Chemical suppliers continue to help customers achieve workplace chemical safety aspirations through product stewardship initiatives. To help solve the in-house chemical compliance dilemma in New Zealand, Responsible Care NZ www. responsiblecarenz.com delivers specialist and costeffective Certified Handler 44
standard training, complete with a certificate. Internationally, chemical industry leaders are moving away from relying on lagging indicators of safety performance in favour of identifying safer work practices and workplaces, by responding to workers’ suggestions about improvements. WorkSafe NZ has warned against business operators falling victim to uninformed and always expensive ‘consultants’. Responsible Care NZ site compliance assessments are non-threatening, effectively capturing and assessing chemical safety performance in a variety of workplaces. Conscientious business operators can add value by sourcing accurate, cost-effective workplace chemical safety advice and compliance tools from their suppliers, industry partners and Responsible Care NZ.
The core problem
Hundreds of business operators turned out for a free Responsible Care NZ compliance workshop, eager for accurate and practical advice, indicating an unsatisfied demand for assistance and education. Attendance highlighted the need to provide SMEs and others with the ability to access, correctly interpret and successfully implement complex regulations with clear and concise compliance advice. Inviting enquirers to “read the regulations” is falling well short of the industry educational expectations arising from WorkSafe’s Statement of Intent 2016-2020. A proven strategy is government agencies collaborating with proactive
Yearbook 2020 industry associations to best achieve workplace safety aspirations. The problem is that SMEs rarely join associations. However they all obtain their chemical requirements from suppliers and can benefit from product stewardship advice and cost-effective industry compliance initiatives. Responsible Care NZ extols less regulation in favour of enabling business operators to be increasingly self-sufficient, using cost-effective products and services such as site compliance assessments and specialist training. The focus is keeping people safe around the chemicals we encounter every day, by once again adding value to businesses. Proven, collaborative
and cost-effective initiatives to raise awareness and improve workplace chemical safety performance include: • Joint agency and industry-focused local compliance workshops at times convenient to SME operators. • WorkSafe NZ inspectors distributing free copies of user-friendly ‘compliance tools’ such as the Storage of Hazardous Substances HSNO Approved Code of Practice and posters explaining GHS pictogrammes • Supporting industry initiatives such as product stewardship • Referencing industry ‘compliance tools’ • Upskilling workplace inspectors in chemical safety.
• Encouraging ‘no blame’ reporting of incidents • Acknowledging successful, proactive industry compliance initiatives • Restoring the status of Approved Industry Codes of Practice A refreshed and energized government strategy for improving workplace chemical safety is both welcome and essential if we are to significantly improve
sub-standard performance and learn from our successes and shortfalls. Expanding mutually beneficial governmentindustry partnerships helping business operators ‘do the right thing’ with minimal fuss and expense should be ‘a no brainer’. Chemical suppliers are ‘Impatient optimists’. They know we can all collectively do better through continuous improvement.
Responsible Care NZ provides practical products and services to enable compliance with New Zealand’s world class chemical management regime. Talk to us today about your compliance requirements. Phone: +64 4 499 4311 Email: email@example.com Website: www.responsiblecarenz.com
Responsible Care NZ
If this was your chemical consignment, what would you do? Let’s discuss how our 0800 CHEMCALL® 24/7 ERS can help Call 04 499 4311 safetynews.co.nz
Would you like plastic with that sir? Chemical suppliers welcome the new decade as a fresh opportunity to increase our major contributions to protecting Spaceship Earth and its crew, by Barry Dyer
s impatient optimists unwilling to dwell on the past, it’s appropriate to recognized climate change, culminating in public demonstrations of disappointment at the lack of collective progress towards meeting the ambitions of the 2016 Paris Agreement.
embraced by the public, generating overdue plastic waste cleanup campaigns, while turning the spotlight on inadequate waste treatment capabilities. Sensibly, great effort must be put into anti-littering campaigns to keep waste out of the environment. In New Zealand, we cannot reuse, recycle or repurpose the bulk of the plastic waste we generate and hitherto exported for disposal. The wait for the ‘perfect solution’ will extend beyond the ‘many years’ now cited by authorities, unless we accept interim, pragmatic solutions. Environmentally conscientious Norway and Singapore
“We haven’t the money so we have to think” - Sir Ernest Rutherford The frustrations of predominantly younger protestors dominate the media, particularly social media, unfettered by the need for balance and accuracy, despite offering few practical examples of meaningful improvements. Only the Marshall Islands, Norway and Suriname have so far submitted the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) required by the UN for a November 2020 environmental gathering to confirm national reductions in greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by some 200 Paris signatories. The condemnation of plastic waste is highlighted as evidence of progress towards protecting our endangered species by removing the contamination of our waterways and oceans. Bans on single use plastic bags (reportedly 10% of the litter and now creating waste treatment issues) have been globally 46
have advanced waste to energy plants, consuming the household rubbish and hazardous waste causing problems here. A US company is successfully demonstrating the practical repurposing of the polystyrene packaging overwhelming our landfills. Why not investigate licencing arrangements? It is time that ideology and procrastination yielded to pragmatism and progress, at least until emerging technologies, courtesy of industry research and development, can offer better solutions. The proactive international chemical industry is participating in major, UN supported plastic cleanup operations such as the Alliance to End Plastic Waste, involving more than 30 leading multi-national companies committing more than US $1 billion to remove, reduce, recover and repurpose waste and prevent future pollution
Yearbook 2020 with environmentally friendly substitutes. Will the reduction of food packaging increase illness and disease? A chemical industry initiative is the Micro-plastics Task Force, committing industry experts to evaluating the risk to human health and the environment. Micro-plastics occur when plastic litter disintegrates in the environment and reappears in the air, soil and water and is being
pathogens and routinely pass through our digestive system. What is not known is the effect on respiratory and digestive functions of humans. This multi-year collaboration will advance our understanding of the overall impact of these micro-particles on people and wildlife, including seafood. To successfully manage our waste, we need leaders to provide appropriate policy to enable industry to
The wait for the ‘perfect solution’ will extend beyond the ‘many years’ now cited by authorities, unless we accept interim, pragmatic solutions ingested throughout the food chain. Industry has established micro-plastics do not carry
provide the necessary solutions. As our landfills near capacity, public opinion will not condone dumping
Compact nuclear energy devices the size of a shipping container and capable of providing electricity to 10,000 dwellings, are being developed in the UK our waste on Third World economies. Given the time required to change public behavior, high-tech w together with encouraging recyclable products, demand our urgent attention. Compact nuclear energy devices the size of a shipping container and capable of providing electricity to 10,000 dwellings, are being developed in the UK and offer many advantages without compromising safety. Economy of scale is a challenge, not an excuse, as the cost of doing nothing far exceeds that of (say) one centrally located facility.
It would be nice to believe small teams of our best and brightest are already exploring the exciting possibilities. Our industry are ‘impatient optimists’ who believe science will resolve our most important challenges, as chemistry continues to deliver solutions and benefits, while others pontificate. No-one wants a landfill at their back fence, nor will micro-plastics enhance your tea or coffee; our trash is being sent back us or burned. It’s time for action. Let’s not be having this same conversation in 2021.
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What is the circular economy? The essential concept at the heart of the circular economy is to ensure we can unmake everything we make
A circular economy is based on these three principles
he products we use for all aspects of life are often designed and manufactured with little thought for the resources consumed in making them or what happens to them at the end of their life. Apart from the most expensive purchases we make, like a car or house, when something breaks in our modern world it is often more expensive to repair than to buy a new one, and usually it goes to the landfill.
This take-make-dispose mindset has created a linear economy -- products are not designed for reuse, repair, refurbishment or to be remanufactured. A circular economy is an alternative to the traditional linear economy in which we keep resources in use for as long as possible, extract the maximum value from them whilst in use, then recover and regenerate products and materials at the end of each service life.
When a product is designed for the longest use possible, and can be easily repaired, remanufactured or recycled (or used, composted and nutrients returned) we consider it to have a circular life cycle. A circular economy is fuelled by renewable energy (solar, hydro, wind and tidal power, and biofuels) while a linear economy works on the principle of natural resources>take>make>dispose>waste. Technical
and biological materials are mixed together. Energy comes from finite sources. Growing international research and evidence shows numerous benefits over the traditional linear economy. These include: • long-term cost savings • increased local job opportunities • encouragement of technical innovation • reducing the amount of harmful waste produced • reversing our impacts on climate change International research and strategies on the circular economy • What is a circular economy? • Circular economy pubications • London's circular economy route map • Finnish road map to a circular economy • Key findings from the forthcoming OECD report - Global Material Resources Outlook to 2060: Economic Drivers and Environmental Consequences
Waste Minimisation in New Zealand The Waste Minimisation Fund (WMF) is for initiatives
In 2013 the company was awarded further funding of
that will accelerate New Zealand’s transition to a
$4 million from the Fund to build a wash plant to enable
complete onshore recycling of PET.
Flight Plastics is a great example of how circular economy business models can benefit New Zealanders with the support of WMF. Flight Plastics has built New Zealand’s first integrated PET recycling and manufacturing facility. PET is commonly used in plastic bottles, punnets and other food containers. Every year New Zealand imports millions of plastic bottles and food containers. When these had been used they were either sent overseas for recycling or disposed of to landfill. But since 2017 Flight Plastics in Lower Hutt, with the support of funding from the Waste Minimisation Fund, has been turning waste PET into new containers to supply distributors in New Zealand In 2011 Flight Plastics received $30,000 from the Waste Minimisation Fund to assess the economic viability of installing a plant to recycle PET (number 1)
Previously PET collected from recycling was shipped in bales to overseas markets for processing. Now, every tonne of PET plastic that is recycled at Flight Plastics prevents a tonne of plastic being imported and another tonne being shipped overseas for recycling. You can spot a recycled Flight Plastic container by the NZ RPET and Flight logo on the container's base. As well as creating local jobs, this initiative is reducing the amount of new plastic coming into the country and waste plastic being shipped offshore or sent to landfill. When a product’s component materials are reused rather than put in a landfill, not only is that material no longer waste but new raw materials are not required to be extracted, what Flight Plastics calls the “double whammy” effect. Countdown uses Flight Plastics products in its bakery and delicatessen.
plastic in Wellington. The plant which makes PET food-safe packaging
Credit: Ministry for the Environment
using recycled PET flakes went ahead.
Circular economy: Biological materials: Image of a Make-Consume-Enrich cycle. Technical material: Image of a Make-use-return cycle
Video: Flight Plastics New Zealand recycled plastic safetynews.co.nz
Innovative combination of waste water and food waste processing Singapore’s new Integrated Waste Management Facility (IWMF) will be among the world’s largest energy recovery facilities. The plant design is based on the most advanced wasteto-energy technology
ingapore’s new IWMF design is based on the most advanced waste-to-energy technology. By co-locating the facility next to a new water reclamation plant, it will be possible to achieve the highest energy efficiency and lowest greenhouse gas footprint. When a population of 5.6 million people share a
dense area, it is no wonder that elements such a clean water and waste management present a unique challenge. These are the current conditions in Singapore, and one sustainable approach to tackling such challenges is found in combining waste and wastewater treatment by exploiting the synergies between the two.
Singapore’s National Water Agency (PUB) and Singapore’s National Environment Agency (NEA) have appointed an international team of consultants to establish an IWMF alongside the world’s largest water reclamation plant (Tuas WRP) designed to treat the nation’s solid waste and used water. The IWMF will consist of a waste-to-energy facility and a sludge incineration plant. In addition, the IWMF will include handling of food
waste and separation of recyclable waste at a Material Recovery Facility. The construction of the two facilities is part of the extensive Deep Tunnel Sewerage System (DTSS) Phase 2 project, which is a super highway for the collection, treatment and disposal of used water, while the IWMF is a key solid waste management facility for the handling of multiple waste streams. The co-located Tuas WRP and IWMF will be the first
The price of the moral high ground Singapore (5.7 million) and New Zealand (5 million) have a similar size population and hang around on earth for about the same number of years (81-83). But that is pretty much where the comparison ends. They work harder (56 percent more GDP per capita) and seemingly are willing to face up to unpleasant truths about keeping the planet liveable. Given the small geographical size of the city state, they are forced, some might say, to run with solutions to stem the damage while more fashionable ways to save the planet mature. When it gets down to motivation to do more than procrastinate, we lose hands down.
We debate endlessly what to do with our rubbish mountain now that dumping on other countries is no longer a convenient option. Steadfastly refusing to even put on the agenda advances high temperature incineration, practiced by many countries in Europe and Asia with little in the way of pollutants. Singapore is investing in waste to energy plants that we find distasteful despite the practice more than offsetting miniscule pollution with associated savings in other processing. It makes no sense.
constellation of its kind in the world planned from the ground-up. Together, the facilities efficiently collect, treat and discharge used water, enhance water sustainability by enabling large scale water recycling and reap the potential synergies of the water-energy-waste nexus, says Ramboll, a key project manager in the venture. Besides conceptually designing the IWMF facility, Ramboll has developed different synergies involving material handling, energy, water and odour/ventilation, which create the basic reasoning for co-locating the facilities. With 2Ă&#x2014;4 combustion lines, the IWMF will be able to treat more than 2.5 million tonnes of solid waste annually, which is five times the capacity of the largest European waste-to-energy facilities. The sludge incineration plant will also be among the largest in world with two large fluidized bed combustion systems. The food waste facility prepares the waste for treatment by anaerobic digestion at Tuas WRP where
a biological process breaks down the organic materials without requiring oxygen to produce biogas. The innovative mega-project brings along high expectations and demands for excellence. The DTSS project has a great
focus on technical excellence and environmental protection. The IWMF will be designed for higher energy and resource recovery efficiencies. It will be able to generate more electricity and recover more materials
such as recyclables and metals for reuse. The IWMF will be equipped with advanced technologies to ensure clean air emissions as well as minimise solid residues for disposal at Singaporeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Semakau landfill.
Circular economy strategies Ditch the “Fire-Ready-Aim” mentality and find a unified voice for Energy from Waste
n a recent report, The Role of Energy from Waste in a Circular Economy: Creating a stable project structure, the Australian Industrial Ecology Network (AIEN) says that the implementation of Energy from Waste (EfW) in Australia should be streamlined in accordance with a nationally developed policy framework. “What we find difficult to accept is that, in spite the myriad issues currently surrounding the management of waste and resource recovery in this country,
our regulators still cannot approach this potentially ‘brand new to Australia’ industry with a view towards a standard Australia-wide approach,” says Chair of the AIEN, Colin Barker. Within the concept of a circular economy, the AIEN says that it recognises the need for recovery of materials prior to assessing opportunities for EfW technologies, with already well-established and emerging processes and supply chains available for the recycling/ reuse of mixed plastics,
rubber, glass, timber and aggregates – among others – as valuable resources in higher value-added product markets. “The AIEN endorses the concept of Highest Net Resource Value (HNRV) as worthy of detailed consideration and promotion. It is a concept enshrined within the waste hierarchy, but with a more tangible and measurable output,” commented Barker. HNRV reflects an approach that seeks to achieve or retain the highest possible resource value
from the materials under consideration, ‘net’ of the cost and effort to achieve such an outcome. The waste hierarchy is normally presented only in the context of environmental/social good. The AIEN, however, has re-imagined the waste hierarchy as representing the notional value applied to a given ‘resource’. “Any failure to properly consider the importance of the waste hierarchy and HNRV principles may result in losses in the long term through stranded investment.
“When resource or material availability becomes a constraint, resources will always flow to those who can afford to pay the most for them,” Barker added. In its report, the AIEN sets out a number of recommendations in relation to the requisite ‘five pillars’ for success for an EfW project: • Host/Facility/Site • Resources/Feedstock • Technology • Off-Take Agreements • Funding “Failure to ensure that appropriately developed and defined strategies are
established for each of these pillars, during – and for each sequential stage of the multi-stage project development process – could be catastrophic for any project, running the risk of effects from the commonplace phenomenon often described by the proverbial Fire-Ready-Aim,” concludes Barker. To download the report The Role of Energy from Waste in a Circular Economy: Creating a stable project structure click here. safetynews.co.nz
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Utility insights into nature-based options A report to assist water utilities in the use of nature-based solutions has been produced by The Nature Conservancy in collaboration with International Water Association
tilities around the world have shown that nature-based approaches can be justified economically and deliver wider benefits when compared to traditional infrastructure. The Nature Conservancy (TNC) estimates there to be around 1000 cities globally that could be using nature-based solutions and achieving a positive return on investment. The interest of TNC is to help find ways to promote nature-based solutions where and when it makes sense for the utility companies. Mostly, this is achieved through projects on the ground led by TNC Global Lead Andrea Erickson’s peers and colleagues in the regions. Some of the work is undertaken through global partnerships with corporations or key associations – for example, the current initiative with the IWA, which has just produced a new case study-based report. TNC has its sights set on that level of application, supporting utilities in achieving cost efficiencies and delivering water in a climate-adaptive way with multiple co-benefits. To do so means progressing further along an imaginary curve mapping awareness and uptake of nature-based approaches. “We are somewhere along the curve, passing through awareness into 56
really saying that people are seeing it as an accepted approach,” says Erickson. This current status on progress with such solutions frames the report prepared with IWA. “This publication is trying to help move us along that scale, knowing that the best way for utilities to learn about new approaches is to hear from their peers,” says Erickson. “This is an attempt to say there are a lot of people out there who already use nature-based solutions – they have a very strong business case around that, they have worked with their regulators, and they have done it in diverse environments.” Case studies The value of case studies, Erickson adds, is that “we all learn best from our peers, because we know that the person who is sharing this experience knows what it is to do our job”. The case studies highlight utilities that have tested this approach and had positive outcomes, sharing their knowledge of barriers and learned lessons. The diversity of the case studies enables utilities to find examples similar to their own environment from which to learn, and a path forward that provides a direction for advice. Even though the 10 case studies in the report are diverse, there are specific lessons learned that appear
to be quite consistent, Erickson observes. “Of the top messages, co-design is really important – working with the regulator and the different authorities, the water division and the government. “Early engagement with the regulatory authorities is key to making sure that you can move forward with nature-based solutions. “Community engagement is critical, knowing that most of the time you are working in a watershed that may be beyond the normal jurisdiction of a utility, and maybe beyond their normal relationships and technical skills.” Partnering to engage with communities or finding new ways to engage with them is, therefore, crucial. Another lesson is the importance of thinking differently about financing such initiatives. There is a need to consider how to enable the regulator to see the business case and, with that, identify financing options such as approving user fees or water fees to be directed to the most cost-efficient practices that can be achieved with nature-based solutions. Other financing sources, such as climate bonds, could also be explored. There is an expectation that such solutions will not deliver in the way that engineering solutions are understood to deliver, but, in fact, they are quite well
proven, Erickson notes. There is a need to ensure an appropriate baseline of information, so setting out a clear baseline, monitoring plan and appropriate time frame are vital. “The good thing about these solutions is that they are an appreciating asset. They get better at what they do over time, but they do take a while before they start providing returns.” Understanding that cost-benefit curve and being able to monitor outcomes over time will enable comfort and belief in the wisdom of investing in nature-based solutions to grow. Regulatory environments are also key factors, because, in some places, they produce disincentives. In such cases, it can be useful to enter a co-design pro-
cess that may be undertaken for only a portion of the operations, one utility, and one community, rather than an entire country. Erickson observes: “It is important to see the regulatory environment for what it is – something that provides a framework for everybody who is operating. Sometimes, it has unintended barriers to nature-based solutions that have to be resolved.” Agricultural opportunities Agricultural practices in a watershed are often the strongest levers towards changing water quality or quantity for a city, she adds, so there is an opportunity to engage with such communities. “We find, generally – when we look very quickly
Nature for Water: A Series of Utility Spotlights Nature for Water: A Series of Utility Spotlights presents insights from 10 case studies from around the world – in the UK, Belgium, Brazil, Australia, Ecuador, Italy, US, Ghana, Philippines, and Denmark. The main categories of approaches considered in the report are: reforestation and forest conservation; riparian buffers or restoration; wetland construction, restoration and conservation; flood bypasses and green infrastructure for flow regulation; urban green infrastructure including green roofs, spaces and water harvesting; and targeted land protection. The report draws on the case
studies, and brings together needs, priorities for progress and knowledge gaps expressed by each utility across aspects key to the progress of nature-based solutions: knowledge, research/monitoring, communication, policy/regulatory, economic evaluation, and collaboration. It offers shared lessons that can serve as core principles for other utilities and water users interested To obtain the report, www. iwapublishing.com/ books/9781789060812/naturewater-series-utility-spotlights
Yearbook 2020 across many watersheds to figure out which ones might have a positive return on investment (ROI) – it is often the presence of agriculture that indicates that this is probably a good positive ROI for utilities to look at in their watersheds.” Working with farmers to change agricultural practices is relatively inexpensive compared to other interventions, such as building big reservoirs or protecting large forests. Agriculture is also the driver of landscape change, so the most efficient approach is to work directly with these actors. “It is like getting at the source, to work on the practices that will have the closest relation to the problems that you are seeing downstream, be that sediment loading or agricultural run-off from nutrients.” A host of other benefits accrue – investing in source water protection, working with agriculture, means working on food security and rural development and biodiversity issues. Attracting the attention of agriculture brings up the question of how to design effective programmes for these initiatives. “I feel like there are many places in the world where voluntary actions could be very positive and very powerful,” Erickson notes. There may be agricultural communities that are desperate for investment and support, including marginalised smallholders. Once communication is established, the communities are happy to have the support, and there are various water funds or utilities that TNC works with “where it sees that to be the case; where there is a very strong value proposition to the agricultural community. At the same time, there is 58
A constructed wetland integrated into the public landscape at Kunshan Culture Plaza Wetland, in China
a very strong value proposition to the utility, so voluntary action seems to make the most sense as a starting point”. Biodiversity benefits TNC is inspired by the actions of the many utilities that are investing in their source watersheds, such as the city of New York voluntarily investing in the Catskills. “What happens in that catchment is of great importance, that we can connect those communities in a positive way.” “TNC’s vision is of a world where both people and nature can thrive. “This is right in our sweet spot, if you will, trying to create a world where we see people and nature thrive. This, for us, feels like a good journey to be on. We believe there will be very significant benefits to biodiversity, carbon mitigation and rural development through the efforts of utilities and cities to invest in their source watersheds.” Projects can bring tangible, measurable value, Erickson notes, but monetised value is not the whole story. Once it is established that such value exists, invest-
ments to improve water security and resources can be undertaken in ways that maximise biodiversity, for example. While this may not be monetised, it is possible to identify benefits to areas or systems and increases in integrity and long-term viability. This is a message that a utility or a city can use – that, as well as better water security, their work is contributing to biodiversity gains or has a benefit to carbon mitigation. “The water sector deserves to get the most investment possible to be able to deliver on its core mission of water for people,” she adds. Of the core purpose of the report, she stresses: “We are very keen to continue
to partner with the sector, to bring forward very good case study lessons learned, to seek out those who are interested in learning more, to come to IWA as the association that provides tools and skills. We are delighted to partner with IWA to bring forward what we know around nature-based solutions and to be helpful in that space that could benefit utilities worldwide.” For more information on The Nature Conservancy, see www.nature.org/en-us/ For more information on IWA’s activity around nature-based solutions and working with TNC, see iwa-network.org/projects/ nature-for-water-andsanitation/
Andrea Erickson As the global lead for water security at The Nature Conservancy (TNC), Andrea Erickson heads the organisation’s activity to develop and promote the use of nature-based solutions, including applications that help water utilities address water quantity and quality issues
It is absolutely OK to panic A 2018 UN report says we have just under a decade left before the best-case scenario for global warming passes us by. The outlook has become worse
he Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change , a group of the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s top scientists convened by the United Nations, put out a stark report highlighting how little time we have left to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, the most ambitious goal under the 2015 Paris climate agreement. The key finding is that if we want to hit this target, we have to cut global greenhouse gas emissions in half compared to where they are now by 2030. By 2050, we would have
to reach net zero emissions, and after that, we would even have to start withdrawing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Otherwise, the window to
more devastating extreme weather, mass migrations, and expensive declines in the global economy. Despite these findings, weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re far off track and only
Global carbon emissions are expected to hit an all-time high in 2019, scientists say, smashing a previous record set in 2018 1.5 degrees Celsius closes, and we lock ourselves into more warming, which will lead to more sea level rise,
getting farther. Global carbon emissions are expected to hit an alltime high in 2019, scientists
say, smashing a previous record set in 2018. By the end of last year, emissions from industrial activities and the burning of fossil fuels will have pumped an estimated 36.8 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. That said, Vox reports we do know what we need to do to accelerate progress in fighting climate change, from pricing carbon dioxide to eating less meat to supporting public officials who will advance critical policies.
Fixing the roads, looking after the workers Rebuilding the rail and roading infrastructure after the Kaikōura earthquake has also meant focusing on the wellbeing of the thousands of workers involved
ssembling all the workers for the Kaikōura rebuild meant taking them away from their homes and families for weeks on end. It could have been a recipe for trouble, but the North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery Alliance, or NCTIR, put systems to help the workers and to integrate them into the local community. The Health and Safety Manager for the project, Stephen Bell, says looking after the wellbeing of the staff meant being flexible, and really caring about workers’ welfare. It’s an approach that earned NCTIR a special judges’ mention from the recent Site Safe Awards and has some valuable lessons for other large projects. The 7.8 quake in November 2016 dumped nearly a million cubic metres of rock on State Highway 1 and the Main North Line railway. As part of the rebuild, the NCTIR Alliance was created as a partnership between the NZ Transport Agency and KiwiRail, along with Downer, Fulton Hogan, HEB Construction and Higgins. Since then more than 8000 workers from 350 companies have worked on 180 sites. It’s been hard work in a challenging environment, and Stephen Bell says a key
challenge was helping the hundreds of workers adapt to a life away from home. The efforts gained NCTIR a judges’ special mention in the inaugural Kalmar Mental Health and Wellbeing Award at Site Safe’s annual awards . The judges said NCTIR’s entry was a bit outside the usual scope of the awards but was so remarkable that they gave NCTIR the special nod. (The winner of the award was a three-way tie between Paul Lynch of FloorRight Installations, Switched On Group and Dave Burt of Team Cabling.) In their commendation the judges said what made NCTIR special was that it made wellbeing a company priority. “It’s a topic for positive discussion from the top down, and the plan doesn’t stand still,” the judges said. “We believe that every business has something to learn from the lead that the NCTIR has taken.” Bell says a key lesson learned was that NCTIR had to check up on how people were doing all the time and adjusting what support was needed. “From mid-2017, we led a hearts-and-minds campaign focused on the lifesaving rules to promote good workforce behaviour and ensure workforce wellbeing.”
He says the whole NCTIR team was focused on reopening the intra-island transport networks and that gave them a high tolerance for work-related stress - but it did lead to mental fatigue and burnout for some. “The initial programme promoted self-care and use of the ‘5 ways to Wellbeing’. “We also employed two local dedicated Wellbeing Officers to check in with workers.” But the hard winter in 2018 threatened to knock the stuffing out of people. “We quickly found we had a tired, project-worn workforce. The wellbeing programme was revitalised, and mental health advocate Mike King was brought in to talk to all the workers. “It was during this time that we first trained 12 staff as mental health first aiders using the CoLiberate programme.” NCTIR also made it easier for workers to spend more time with their families by adjusting the work hours. “Most construction workers were there to earn better money than they could in their hometown, so working hard while they were there was important to them,” Bell says. They also said if they were having a day off, they’d prefer it to be at home.
This led to a new Fatigue Management Guideline, and option of a new 10.5day continuous work roster: Construction teams worked 12 hours per day most days, but only eight hours on Saturdays to allow for additional recreational time on the weekends that they stayed in Kaikōura. The new roster meant that on the alternate weekend they got 3.5 days at home, with travel as part of their last roster hours for the fortnight. Knowing they had a good break, with some downtime while the kids were at school, and while services such as banks were open, hugely boosted morale, Bell says.
Key takeaways for contractors:
Having people embedded in the workforce who are there to monitor wellbeing gives managers eyes and ears on the ground.
Rebuilding the road and rail links damaged by the 7.8 quake was a huge task “We created a dedicated wellbeing team and established two Wellbeing Officers. They joined breakfast at the accommodation Village at least weekly, were regularly out on site, and were always available by phone, connecting with and listening to people.” They also took practical, immediate action where needed. When a worker’s brother suddenly passed away, a Wellbeing Officer drove him to Christchurch airport so he could get home quickly. The result was the officers won the confidence of the workers, and people knew that practical, on-theground support was available if they had a problem, “As the project has changed from recovery to improvements and the number of workers has decreased, we’ve adjusted our model,” Bell says. “We have one Wellbe-
ing Officer, with 24 people across the project trained in mental health first aid, using the CoLiberate program. This includes construction managers, health and safety staff, human resources staff, and a range of people who regularly visit offices and sites. “Engagement with this team continues to be positive, with each person having a conversation an
estimated 20-30 times per month on average, so we know they are reaching people when help is needed.” They then rolled out the secret weapon in the shape of Mike King again in winter 2019 with almost all the workforce turning out to hear him. NCTIR also gave out merino tops and beanies to keep workers warm. They have also given out
fridge magnets for workers’ families so they had an emergency contact number if there was a family issue and the worker was not contactable. All the efforts paid off with a workforce that feels valued, Bell says. “And while we know our wellbeing programme is working, we also need to continue adapting it to meet the team’s needs.”
Trained mental health first aiders that supported the workers
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