Australia’s main disaster management agencies are now even closer

Australia’s ability to prepare for, respond to and recover from natural disasters will be further strengthened, under plans recommended to the Governor-General.

The Minister of Emergency Management, Senator the Honorable Murray Watt, announced the government’s intention to recommend to the Governor General the creation of a single agency for emergency management, resilience and recovery.

From today, July 1, the National Agency for Resilience and Recovery will be transferred to sit within the Home Affairs portfolio, as part of the changes to the machinery of government already announced by the Prime Minister.

This means that the situational awareness, emergency preparedness, crisis management and response functions of Emergency Management Australia, which is already part of the Home Office, will be joined in the portfolio by the recovery and resilience functions of the National Recovery and Resilience Agency (NRRA). ).

In addition, Minister Watt will recommend to the Governor General that beginning September 1, the NRRA and EMA merge to form a new organization, called the National Emergency Management, Resilience and Recovery Agency (NEMRRA), which will combine the efforts of both agencies.

“Combining all of these disaster-related functions into one agency under the Home Affairs Portfolio is a significant step forward and strengthens Australia’s ability to prepare for, manage and recover from a number and increasing severity of disasters,” said Minister Watt.

“Due to the effects of climate change, Australia will face more major natural disasters in the future, and we need to prepare and adapt now to ensure that as a nation we are in the best position. to deal with this inevitable.”

Natural disasters currently cost the Australian economy $38 billion per year on average, and man-made risks have comparable costs to the economy as a whole, with the estimated cost of natural disasters in Australia expected to reach at minus $73 billion per year by 2060 under a low-emissions scenario. , and $94 billion under a high emissions trajectory.

“I am confident that these structural changes will help deliver on the Albanian government’s commitment to ensuring that Australia is better prepared for the natural disasters that we know will occur.”

One consequence of these recommended changes is that effective September 1, the Office of the NRRA General Coordinator will cease to exist.

The General Coordinator, The Honorable Shane Stone AC QC will take leave from today, before retiring from employment with the NRRA on August 31. I would like to thank Mr. Stone for his service in establishing and leading the NRRA since its inception.

The Home Office’s Director of Operations, Ms Justine Saunders APM, will act as the Acting General Co-ordinator of the NRRA until the establishment of the proposed new agency.

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