FLYER ISSUE 3: MARCH 2022
NEXT FMA MEETING: MAY QM + AGM THURSDAY 19 MAY 2022 AT TOOWOOMBA CONFERENCE
A MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT
At what cost - emotionally?
With major flooding again occurring this month, multiple evacuation orders were issued and emergency responders were once again grappling with flood rescues as heavy rain lashed disaster-hit parts of Australia's east
Some 6600 people were ordered to leave parts of North and South Lismore, Tumbulgum, Mullumbimby, Billinudgel, Coraki and Kyogle.
Multiple locations on the Gold Coast recorded over 200 millimetres of rain in 24 hours. Toowoomba experienced flash flooding and about 2000 properties have had water in their yards at
This event will surely test the mental strength of these communities as people again have faced the worry and stress of where to go and what will the aftermath look like when they get back to their
Some will still be living with relatives and other temporary accommodation as a result of the previous flood, and now they will have to tolerate an even longer stay.
Two men died after flash flooding hit parts of south east Queensland. Several dogs were with one of the men and they were also drowned.
At one stage, Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) said they conducted 14 swift water rescues over a 24 hour period which again shows that people aren’t listening to the warnings about vehicles in flood
The social impacts of this latest event will be enormous with more losses and flood fatigue. Apart from the human fatalities, there were many tragic losses of pets including dogs, horses, cows and other animals which adds to the
sorrow and depression of the owners. Imagine what terror was experienced by the animals as they fought to stay alive but failed. Some people have lost everything, including their much loved animals.
Floods are more than damage and dollars, and those of us involved in floodplain management know that the same thing will happen again and again at any time, with more and more
That’s why we support wise floodplain planning and development.
Ian Dinham | FMA President
FMA NATIONAL CONFERENCE IN ONLY 46 DAYS!
The return of a face-to-face FMA Conference is only a little over a month away and it is sure to be our best event yet. We look forward to seeing all of our Members in person after so much time apart. The Conference week from 17th - 20th May in Toowoomba, Queensland, will tick many boxes for our delegates with
informative talks, innovative presentations and exciting networking opportunities on offer.
Early registration date extended to 8 April
The current natural disasters facing Australia are greatly impacting our communities and our Members. We don't want to miss seeing you at our event because of short deadlines, so we have extended the closing dates for both Early Registration Discount Rates and Excellence Awards nominations to Friday 8th April.
We do hope to see you there, so make the most of the extensions and register/nominate now!
Annual General Meeting Information
With a return to a face-to-face Conference, the Annual General Meeting is again scheduled for Thursday afternoon. Members, please ensure that you make a point of attending so we can achieve a quorum for our first AGM since 2019
– as our Constitution hasn’t allowed for the AGM to be held online.
The Notice of Meeting and the Call for Nomination of Office Bearers will be issued in the coming week.
FMA Excellence Awards also extended to 8 April
The FMA Excellence Awards have been extended by two weeks, now closing 8th April. If you are an FMA Member organisation or Professional/Individual or Student Member who has been working towards promoting wise land use planning, reducing flood impacts, managing flood incidents or restoring communities after a flood event, we want to see your entries!
The winners of the 2022 Excellence Awards will be announced at the Gala Excellence Awards Dinner at the FMA National Conference in Toowoomba in May.
The Excellence Awards are split into three categories:
FMA Flood Risk Management Project of the Year
FMA-Allan Ezzy Flood Risk Manager of the Year
FMA YFM Young Floodplain Manager of the Year
You can download the information and nomination forms at floods.org.au/ea.
For more information on the Conference itself, visit floodplainconference.com.
The Not So Obvious Consequences of
2 March 2022
Adding to the distress of families and businesses
directly affected by flooding, many people whose properties are not classified as “flood prone” have been experiencing flow on effects from this week’s massive rain event in Queensland and NSW.
Floodplain Management Australia (FMA) President Ian Dinham reported from Gympie, on the Mary River in South East Queensland, that one of the serious concerns with such a large flood has been running out of drinking water.
“When the flood water rises the electricity gets switched off for safety reasons, then the water and sewer pump stations cease to operate. It’s a bit like New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, as there may be less than a day's
water supply” Mr Dinham said.
“The same situation can arise when people remain in high-rise accommodation with habitable floors above flood level, but power, water and sewer are not available during and after a flood. If people choose not to evacuate before
the floodwaters rise they must be prepared to be self sufficient for at least several days.
“This week there have also been issues for isolated people when the helicopters could not land to deliver food and water due to trees and topography. With all bridges closed ambulances and SES vehicles have not been available.
“Where evacuations were necessary they have frequently presented life threatening risks to stranded persons and their rescuers.
“Added to that are the challenges of supporting vulnerable people with special needs, such as dialysis and other medical equipment, people who absolutely rely on power.
“Everybody has a responsibility to understand their flood risk, and be prepared for events like this which can develop very quickly.
“Consult the local Council to learn if the neighbourhood and local roads can be flooded, find out how you can be notified of a flood threat, and in NSW download the Floods Near Me app.
“And never drive or walk into floodwater. SES volunteers have enough to do without risking their lives undertaking rescues which could have been avoided.”
Social Media's Potentially Deadly Influence During the Queensland and New South Wales Floods
3 March 2022
Social media users are perpetuating a life-threatening trend throughout the flooded states of the nation.
Videos of people swimming, jet-skiing and messing about in their local floodwaters have inundated all social media platforms over the past few days.
“While people may view this content as entertainment, what they don’t recognise is just how dangerous this behaviour is” said Floodplain Management Australia President Ian Dinham.
“Floodwater contains powerful, unseen currents often leading to watercourses and hazardous drains, sewage harbouring disease and often poisonous wildlife.
“The likes and the clicks are not worth risking your life for, or just as importantly the lives of your followers or the emergency personnel who will have to rescue you and care for your injuries.
“We always say ‘Don’t drive through floodwaters’; we never thought we would have to say ‘Don’t jet-ski through floodwaters’.
“Don’t commend this reckless behaviour. Stay out of floodwaters unless it is completely unavoidable, in which case do so with extreme caution, following guidelines from your local State Emergency Service.”
FMA commends the incredible work of the emergency services and volunteers working day and night to secure the safety of their communities.
FMA Welcomes Review of Flood Prone Development
14 March 2022
Floodplain Management Australia (FMA) has welcomed the announcement by NSW Planning Minister Anthony Roberts of an independent review of the instruments, policies and programs applying to developments in flood prone locations.
FMA President Ian Dinham said the flooding which has devasted so much of eastern Australia in recent weeks demonstrates how many houses and businesses have been allowed in areas where there is a real risk of catastrophic
flooding, and unacceptable risks to life.
“With the benefit of hindsight, it is obvious that floodplain development often carries unacceptable risks. Risks to people’s lives, possessions, businesses and mental health. And tremendous costs to governments in clean up,
repair and rebuilding.
“The scenes of street after street piled high with flood ruined household possessions in northern NSW is heart-wrenching. As well as immediate assistance to help those directly affected, we need a coordinated adequately funded
response to better manage the risk to people living in flood-prone areas across the state.
“In many cases mitigation works such as flood levees, flood drainage and house raising can reduce the frequency and severity of flooding. Where existing levees have been shown to be inadequate this needs to be addressed.
“We also need policies to ensure that any new development on floodplains is only permitted where the risk is properly understood and planned for.
“Long awaited improvements to NSW planning legislation and development guidelines are presently underway. We need to ensure that these updates are appropriate given the recent experiences, but we don’t need throw out this good
work and start again.
“And what we absolutely don’t need is a long, drawn-out review that leaves flood affected communities in limbo.”
“FMA advocates reducing unacceptable flood risks by increasing government investment in wise land use planning, effective emergency response, community resilience initiatives and mitigation infrastructure. We look forward to
contributing the collective knowledge of FMA’s Members to the review process,” Mr Dinham said.
To view more FMA Media Releases, visit floods.org.au/releases.
Review of SE Queensland Flooding Event
The Queensland Premier has announced the Office of the Inspector-General of Emergency Management will undertake a review of the South East Queensland rainfall and flooding event in February-March
The issues to be covered by the review include:
- The effectiveness of preparedness activities undertaken by relevant local government agencies, and other agencies engaged in response operations in the Local Government Areas
activated for Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements.
- The timing and effectiveness of Emergency Alerts that were issued to warn the general community of the flooding event
- The effectiveness of cooperation between all agencies engaged in response operations.
The review's terms of reference are available for download here. Further information is available at https://www.igem.qld.gov.au/south-east-queensland-rainfall-and-flooding-event-february-march-2022-review
Queensland Members are encouraged to submit your comments directly to the Office of the Inspector-General of Emergency Management. If you have comments you wish to be considered for the FMA submission, please email these to FMA
Queensland Director Will Prentice: email@example.com by Wednesday 13 April.
The acting NSW Premier Paul Toole has established the NSW Independent Flood Inquiry to examine and report on the causes of, preparedness for, response to and recovery from the 2022 flood
NSW Independent Planning Commission Chair Professor Mary O’Kane and former Police Commissioner Michael Fuller have been engaged to lead the Inquiry.
The Inquiry will report on:
- the causes of and factors contributing to the frequency, intensity, timing and location of floods;
- preparation and planning by agencies and the community for floods in NSW;
- responses to floods, particularly measures to protect life, property and the environment;
- the transition from incident response to recovery;
- recovery, including housing, clean-up, financial support, community engagement and longer-term community
Matters to be considered include:
- the safety of emergency services and community first responders;
- current and future land use planning and management and building standards in flood prone locations across NSW;
- appropriate action to adapt to future flood risks to communities and ecosystems;
- coordination and collaboration between all levels of government.
The Inquiry is required to report to the Premier on causation, land use planning and management and related
matters by 30 June 2022, and on all other matters by 30 September 2022.
A separate Legislative Council Select Committee has been established to inquire into and report on the response to the Western Sydney and North Coast
The terms of reference include inquiring into the role, composition and resource allocations of
NSW agencies, and coordination between NSW and Federal Governments and their agencies.
This inquiry will begin after 10 April and report by 9 August.
CONSULTATION ON UPDATE OF THE NSW FLOODPLAIN DEVELOPMENT MANUAL CLOSES 4 APRIL
The deadline for feedback on the update of the 2005 NSW Floodplain Development Manual and its supporting toolkit has been extended from 18 March to 4 April.
Department of Planning and Environment (DPE) Principal Flood Specialist Duncan McLuckie has advised that in relation to severely affected areas of the Far North Coast departmental flood staff will be in contact with the relevant
councils to provide them with the opportunity for additional time to provide feedback.
Finalisation of the Manual will consider, where relevant, any findings of the recently announced independent review into the NSW floods.
These documents are the result of several years of development by the Flood Team in the Environment, Energy and Science group of the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment, now the (DPE).
NSW Members are encouraged to make time to review the updated Manual and toolkit, and be sure to provide your comments to the DPE Flood Team. If you have comments you wish FMA to consider for its submission please email those
Details are available at: https://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/topics/water/floodplains/flood-risk-management-manual-update.
Enquiries on the update can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org
AUSTRALIAN RAINFALL AND RUNOFF WEBINAR AVAILABLE
The Australian Water School’s recent webinar Australian Rainfall & Runoff - to the
extreme! was a huge success, connecting participants from across the globe.
A panel of industry experts including FMA Technical Director Danny Rose discussed the February and March rainfall events and implications for flood modelling and project planning implications.
For those who missed the event, or could not log on to the site due to the overwhelming number of live attendees the recording is now available at the AWS website: https://awschool.com.au/resources/panel-event-australian-rainfall-and-runoff-to-the-extreme/
The broad ranging discussion provided an excellent introduction to the FMA Pre-conference Workshop Australian Rainfall and Runoff – Where to Now?
To register go to: https://floodplainconference.com
DO YOU HAVE LESSONS FROM THE 2022 FLOODS?
The Australian National University’s Institute for Climate, Energy and Disaster
Solutions (ICEDS) harnesses and boosts ANU expertise, research and engagement in climate, energy and disaster-risk research. With the goal of advancing innovative solutions, the Institute facilitates integrated approaches to research and community engagement across disciplines.
The Disaster Solutions portfolio aims to develop unique and transformational solutions to prevent disasters in partnership with stakeholders, with the ambitious goal of leaving nothing to
We have really appreciated speaking with communities with whom we plan to partner, and are awaiting the announcement of Preparing Australian Communities Program grants by the Australian
The Institute is seeking to identify solutions to flood resilience. We recognise the excessive damage and loss caused by the recent floods, and that with climate change, these events are likely to become more common. We are
hopeful that we can learn from these events to help to inform preparedness for next time.
One of our interests is to help facilitate solutions through learning from, analysing and sharing successful flood prevention strategies with other flood-prone
We are very interested to learn of any flood risk reduction measures that were successful in preventing 2022 floods. Where were they? In what situation? What worked? Why? What did it prevent? What are the lessons for other
If you would like to engage further on this initiative, please contact Carla Alzamora email@example.com by 20 April.
2022 RESILIENT AUSTRALIA AWARDS
Applications for the 2022 Resilient Australia Awards open on 7
The awards recognise a wide range of initiatives with past projects centred on risk assessment and mitigation, mental health and wellbeing, education, training and research, and community engagement, as well as response and
State and territory winners are considered for national awards, along with projects entered directly to the national awards.
The Resilient Australia Awards are sponsored by the Australian Government in partnership with the states and territories and managed by the Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience
For details see https://www.aidr.org.au/programs/resilient-australia-awards
The recent YFM Webinar International Careers and Floodplain Management was a great success - thank you to all who came along. The recording of the Webinar will be made available in the Members' Section for those who were
unable to attend.
We're looking forward to seeing our fellow YFM colleagues at the FMA Conference in May and celebrating the winner of the 2022 FMA-YFM Young Floodplain Manager of the Year Award during the Gala Dinner.
Have you got your entry in yet? FMA has extended the closing date for the Excellence Awards to Friday 8th April, so now it the time! To submit a nomination, visit floods.org.au/ea.
If you're interested in joining the YFM, head to floods.org.au/yfm.
The FMA Flyer reaches a wide range of industry professionals from Australia and
overseas, and if you have any recent projects or exciting news we would love to share it with our readers.
Send through details of your stories and we can include them in our upcoming issues by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
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If you are interested in promoting a vacant position with us, please contact us.
Please remember that while we circulate Vacant Positions in this monthly Flyer, sometimes position closing deadlines don't align with the time of its distribution. Make sure you head to floods.org.au/jobs to check for Vacant Positions that may not be listed here due to shorter closing dates.