As a humanitarian organisation, we’re seeing first-hand and responding to the increasingly devastating consequences of climate change. We work to help people adapt to the impacts of climate change and we’re working to reduce our own carbon emissions. 

The impacts of climate change extend well beyond surviving weather-related events to threatening or destroying people’s livelihoods, health, security and wellbeing. It is changing migration patterns and increasingly displacing people from their homes.  

Our response to climate change 

Around the world, climate change is leading to more frequent disasters and more intense weather events such as floods, droughts and extreme heat.  

In Aotearoa New Zealand, we’re being called on more often to support communities – especially those affected by flooding. And we’re already working to help people adapt to the impacts of climate change through our programmes such as Good and Ready and our partnerships with Red Cross national societies in the Pacific, to build more resilient communities. 

We recognise the vital role mātauranga Māori (Māori knowledge) plays in adaptation planning in Aotearoa and believe integrating tikanga Maori will help our work in adaptation and disaster risk reduction. 

Statement of intent

New Zealand Red Cross has outlined how we intend to respond to climate change in an initial statement of intent.  

Statement of Intent: Responding to Climate Change [PDF]

Climate and Environment Charter

We’ve signed up to the Climate and Environment Charter, which recognises the key role humanitarian organisations play in addressing climate crises, and how we must be part of the solution through helping communities adapt and improving our own environmental sustainability.  

Our Climate Charter commitments

Our carbon emissions

We’re working on how we can reduce our own carbon emissions and foster a culture of sustainability across the organisation. We're now tracking and working to reduce our travel emissions. We have an active Sustainability Network working to champion green actions throughout the country.

There’s still much to be done but we’ve started taking steps such as reviewing our vehicle fleet and making it easy for our people to recycle.  

Red Cross international action 

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has called for climate action in conflict-affected countries to be strengthened and for more finance to be available. These countries have less capacity to adapt, and so are disproportionately vulnerable to climate change.

ICRC climate change report: When Rain Turns to Dust

The Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre works to help the Red Cross Movement and its partners reduce the impacts of climate change and extreme-weather events on vulnerable people. The centre offers a vast range of resources available to anyone — including courses, image galleries, publications, and podcasts. 

Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre 

People walking.
Residents of Wailotua, Fiji regularly practice emergency evacuations to prepare for the cyclone season.