Disaster resilience now has a permanent home in legislation
Published Wednesday, 03 April, 2019 at 07:00 AM
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning
The Honourable Cameron Dick
The role of Australia’s only permanent disaster recovery organisation has today been strengthened, with amendments to the Queensland Reconstruction Authority Act 2011 passing through parliament.
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick said the amendments cemented the role of the Queensland Reconstruction Authority (QRA) as the state’s lead agency for disaster recovery, resilience and mitigation.
“The QRA was established in 2011 after Tropical Cyclone Yasi and the Queensland floods, and has since managed a $14.5 billion program of reconstruction works to help communities recover from natural disasters,” Mr Dick said.
“While initially founded to assist in reconstruction and recovery of the state post-floods, QRA has since established itself as a national and international leader in natural disaster resilience.
“As the most disaster-impacted state in Australia, we need to ensure the QRA has the legislative authority and clarity it needs to support government in building a stronger and more resilient state.
“Broadly, the amendments will ensure the QRA can undertake its responsibilities for the full range of disaster events rather than only floods, lead the coordination of resilience and recovery policy, and facilitate mitigation activities outside of post-disaster events.”
QRA CEO Brendan Moon said the recent bushfires in central Queensland, devastating floods in the north and west, as well as multiple tropical cyclones, further demonstrated the importance of building resilience before disasters strike.
“These events have resulted in loss of life, millions of dollars in damages to public infrastructure, agriculture, industry and tourism, and billions of dollars in insurance losses,” Mr Moon said.
“We need to build our resilience, make our infrastructure and services stronger, and equip our communities with the tools to better prepare and withstand the disasters that frequently impact our state.
“We also need to make sure the resilience activities QRA undertakes are not just limited to communities affected by a previous disaster event.
“Amendments to the Act extend the authority’s functions to facilitate this and demonstrate the state government’s commitment to making Queensland the most disaster-resilient state in Australia.”
Media contact: Ben Doyle 0400 775 561