The Queensland government has invested a further $38 million in funding to ensure that the state’s critical infrastructure is better able to withstand natural disasters.
Communities right across Queensland will share a $9.5 million disaster mitigation fund for 62 regional projects designed to greatly improve various infrastructures’ ability to withstand extreme weather events.
All of the selected, high-priority works are being delivered through Round 1 of a four-round $38 million Queensland Disaster Resilience Fund (QDRF).
The new resilience projects are in addition to a previously announced $100 million Betterment Fund and $14.5 million Water and Sewerage Infrastructure Program funded under Commonwealth-Queensland Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements.
The latest projects will be delivered by local governments, state agencies and non-government organisations, and will provide more work and jobs in regional Queensland.
Queensland Premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk, said the value of the infrastructure projects was essential with Queensland having recently experienced one of the most destructive storm and fire seasons in the state’s history.
“This investment is all about improving safety and better protecting people’s homes and businesses,” Ms Palaszczuk said.
“Improving our state’s disaster resilience not only protects our communities and our vital infrastructure, it will reduce future restoration costs.
“Queensland is already regarded as a nation-leader when it comes to storm resilience-building measures. However, with eleven separate disaster events impacting 61 of our state’s 77 council areas over a six-month period, we must do more, and that’s what this fund is all about.”
Priority projects include bushfire mitigation measures such as fire breaks, riverbank stabilisation, flood modelling and mapping, evacuation centre upgrades, and reducing the disaster risk for people with disabilities.
In addition, delivery of the Brisbane River Strategic Floodplain Management Plan is being supported by the QDRF.
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning, Cameron Dick, said the QDRF will be allocated annually for four years as Queensland works towards becoming the most disaster-resilient state in Australia.
“As a state, we need to do everything we can to stand strong against extreme weather events,” Mr Dick said.
“This is a significant and crucial investment in our future.”
Funding for these projects will be administered by the Queensland Reconstruction Authority, Australia’s only permanent disaster recovery agency.