In this issue:                                                                   June quarter 2016

VCOSS-MAV Conference a success!
MAV Environment Conference
New Victorian Floodplain Management Strategy

IBM Smarter Cities Challenge
Australian Institute of Disaster Resilience
News in brief


VCOSS-MAV Conference a success!

The annual VCOSS-MAV Emergency Management Conference took place on 20 June, attended by 100 delegates and featuring some great speakers.

Presentations from all speakers are now available online.

This forum is aimed at increasing the levels of cooperation and collaboration between local government and the community sector, and showcased some great examples of strong and active partnerships in emergency management planning in Victoria.

MAV Environment Conference

Time is running out to register for our MAV Environment Conference.

Join us at Melbourne Park on 12-13 July to hear the latest on the science and politics of climate change; community, customer and council-led renewable energy projects; the use of drones for ecology and conservation; smart lighting and smart cities; designing thriving built environments; the sharing economy, and more.

Keynote speakers include Rob Gell, Inaugural Fellow of the Environment Institute of Australia and New Zealand; and Dr Richard Denniss, The Australia Institute.

We are now offering a single day registrations which can be made online.

New Victorian Floodplain Management Strategy

The Victorian Government is holding regional sessions with councils and water authorities to commence implementation of the recently released Victorian Floodplain Management Strategy. We welcome the cooperative and consultative process undertaken by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) to assist in the development of regional strategies. This process will hopefully result in a better planning and coordination effort between agencies to mitigate the impacts of adverse flooding events.

There remains a number of complexities for councils in the implementation of the strategy, particularly in relation to roles and responsibilities of councils and water authorities. There is also a body of work involved in incorporating the knowledge gained from flood studies into local planning schemes. We’re pleased that DELWP will be accountable for undertaking coastal hazard assessments for priority areas identified through Regional Coastal Plans.

We will also continue to advocate for the Water Act to be amended so that councils’ liability arising out of flows of water are treated in the same way as water authorities. Currently, councils’ liability for flows of water is assessed using a strict liability test. The available resources of councils should also be considered in assessing liability. Whilst these proposed amendments would not erradicate liability for councils, it would provide a fairer test and require courts to take into account the circumstances that caused the flow of water.

We will keep councils updated with information about our activities and discussions as they unfold, however we also would appreciate councils letting us know about any specific issues that we can assist in resolving at the state level. For further information, please contact Rosemary Hancock.

IBM Smarter Cities Challenge

The City of Melbourne has participated in the IBM Smarter Cities Challenge, which deploys IBM experts to assist in how to make cities smarter and more effective. The City of Melbourne beat more than 100 other cities to be one of 16 taking part in the challenge.

They chose the focus for the three week challenge to be emergency preparedness, and ways to better manage disruption and emergency events in Melbourne.

The IBM team liaised with a range of government agencies such as Emergency Management Victoria, Public Transport Victoria and the Department of Health and Human Services to gain a diverse perspective on the way the city responds to emergencies and long-term disruptive events.

The final report will be released shortly. A future MAV update will circulate the report.

Australian Institute of Disaster Resilience

Following the closure of the Australian Emergency Management Institute early last year, the Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience (AIDR) was officially launched on 17 November 2015.

The Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience is a partnership between Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council (AFAC), the Australian Red Cross and the Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, and is funded by the federal Attorney-General’s department.

AIDR aims to support the development of excellence in Australia’s national disaster resilience education, social values and operational capabilities.

The AIDR will host events and research for the emergency management sector, and promises to become a resource for local government into the future. Please visit the AIDR website for more information.

News in brief

  • Emergency Management Victoria has launched a Twitter account, @EMV_news.
  • Australia's first Resilience Strategy for Greater Melbourne was launched in June. The Strategy sets out a series of actions that will help make Melbourne a viable, sustainable, liveable and prosperous city long into the future. It was endorsed by the City of Melbourne’s Future Melbourne Committee and is the result of the work of more than 1000 individuals from 230 organisations, Melbourne’s 32 local councils, and many Victorian Government departments.
  • Councils and communities can utilise a National Equine Database (NED) to support the needs of animal owners living in bushfire prone areas. It's designed for like-minded community members, providing options enabling them to exercise responsibility for their own and their animals’ safety as a result of natural environment emergencies.
Upcoming MAV events...

12-13 July

MAV Environment Conference

14 July

Winning Tourism Strategies for Councils workshop

10-11 August

MAV Technology National Conference


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