Responding to Climate Change
The City of Rockingham has some of the most beautiful coastline in Western Australia, which means it is in the front line of the potential threats of climate change.
In the City’s Strategic Community Plan one of the 16 Community Aspirations defines the City’s climate change response in terms of ’planning systems, infrastructure standards, and community awareness programs that serve to acknowledge and mitigate the impacts of climate change’.
To achieve this Aspiration the City established a working group tasked with developing and implementing a Climate Change Response Strategy.
The group developed an action plan to address all the ‘high’ and ‘extreme’ risks for the immediate future, and for 2030, 2070, and 2100.
An annual budget of $400,000 was allocated to the Climate Change Management Fund.
Early in 2014 the City updated the Climate Change Response Strategy, incorporating new information from the Sea Change Task Force (in which the Mayor and CEO have been actively involved), the Peron Naturaliste Partnership, the Cockburn Sound Alliance, a study on legal implications released by Beatty Legal, and new information that has become available.
This update process led to the development of a Climate Change Defence and Management Strategy, which focuses on adaptation and mitigation options for sea level rise, storms, tidal surges and bushfires.
Six key strategic objectives were identified:
- design of coastal infrastructure to withstand storms, tides and sea level rise
- addressing asset management implications (including drainage points)
- flag properties at risk and provide information to the community
- identify defence, management and retreat options for properties and assets at risk
- identify bushfire prone properties and develop actions to reduce the risk
- ongoing communication and roll out of sustainability projects for community and staff.
“We recognise that the climate is changing, so our vision for the City includes taking steps to reduce the impact on our environment for the benefit of current and future generations,” Mayor Barry Sammels said.
“Our Climate Change Defence and Management Strategy is crucial to our proactive approach to realising our environmental goals.