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The Liberal and Nationals Government is reducing the risk and minimising the impact to communities of large-scale natural disasters, such as floods in Rockhampton, by directly funding Archer Street Drainage Scheme Stages 1 & 2 to the value of $2,989,383.

Minister for Emergency Management and National Recovery and Resilience, Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie, said the Preparing Australian Communities Program – Local Stream, is the first tranche of the Preparing Australia Program, which is an investment by the Australian Government of $600 million over six years to build the nation’s resilience to natural disasters.

“I am delighted that the Archer Street Drainage Scheme Rockhampton was one of 158 projects across the country that shared in $150 million dollars from the Commonwealth Government,” Minister McKenzie said.

“The Liberal and Nationals Government wants our communities to be as prepared for, and protected from, the threat of natural disasters, as much as possible.

“The program is funding projects identified locally to improve the resilience of our communities in the social, economic, natural or built environments.

“We know that we can’t disaster-proof the entire nation, however by delivering this program, our Government is not only increasing disaster preparedness and resilience, but also reducing the costs in both time and money of recovery following future disasters. By reducing disaster risk, it’s also anticipated this investment will encourage reductions in insurance premiums, where possible,” Minister McKenzie said.

Federal Member for Capricornia, Michelle Landry, said the Archer Street Drainage Scheme Stages 1 and 2 will reduce the flood hazard and frequency of flood inundation for existing residential and commercial buildings within the study area for local catchment flood events.

“We know communities are best placed to understand their unique needs and how they can best improve their resilience and reduce their level of risk to natural disasters, that’s why this project has been assessed to be so important to Rockhampton,” Ms Landry said.

“Disasters currently cost Australian taxpayers $18.2 billion per year and this has been forecast to rise to $39 billion per year by 2050, even without increased frequency and intensity of weather events.

“I would like to thank Mayor Tony Williams and Rockhampton Regional Council for working constructively with the Australian Government.”

Mayor of Rockhampton Region and Chair of the Local Disaster Management Group, Tony Williams, said he was thrilled to hear the news of the successful funding.

“Council is continually looking at ways to improve the flood resilience of our community,” Mayor Williams said.

“I would like to thank Michelle Landry for her support in gaining funding for this incredibly important project that will help to protect our homes, our infrastructure and our community.

“This project forms part of the Upper Main Drain Drainage Scheme and is designed to redirect surface flows to the Fitzroy River rather than entering the main drain system in the Archer Street area.

“As a result, this will improve the flood resilience of up to 70 commercial and residential buildings in low lying areas surrounding Archer Street and see increased protection for flood levels in a 1 in 100 year severe rainfall event.” 

There are three streams of the Preparing Australia Program:

  • Preparing Australian Communities Program for projects of local significance (Communities Local program) – focussed on public risk reduction.
  • Preparing Australian Communities Program for projects of National Significance – focussed on public risk reduction.
  • Preparing Australian Homes Program – focussed on private risk reduction.

For more information and a full list of projects funded under Round One of the Preparing Australian Communities Program – Local stream visit: https://recovery.gov.au/disaster-risk-reduction/preparing-australia-program

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