Scoping scenario planning for remote community risk management in northern Australia

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    The ‘Scenario planning for remote community risk management in northern Australia’ project is part of CDU’s northern hub second round suite of projects, which commenced in July 2017. The hub involves collaborations between the Darwin Centre for Bushfire Research (DCBR) at Charles Darwin University (CDU), the North Australia Indigenous Land & Sea Management Alliance Ltd (NAILSMA), the Aboriginal Research Practitioners Network (ARPNet) also based at CDU, and regional stakeholders including north Australian Fire and Emergency Management agencies and remote Indigenous communities.

    The main objective of the project is to enhance the capability of and empower vulnerable north Australian communities to better plan for and address Emergency Management (EM) issues. The project will address this core objective through the undertaking of targeted planning activities at selected participating vulnerable communities (across the northern jurisdictions), supported by available or generated information resources. An essential premise of the project is that many Indigenous Ranger Groups (IRGs) in remote communities can deliver effective front-line EM preparedness and response.

    To date, on the advice of NT and WA EM agencies, IRGs from three remote communities are participating in the project from the NT i.e. Borroloola (Gulf region), Hermannsburg, and Yuendumu in central Australia. In addition, IRGs from Bidyadanga (and neighboring communities) with support from the Department of Fire and Emergency Services in WA are expected to join the project later in 2018. Preliminary discussions with the IRGs, and other key regional stakeholders (e.g. Shire councils, EM agencies), have all been extremely positive, with a keen interest in participation signaled from community members.

    For this first annual report of the project, we report our engagement process with the remote communities and the EM agencies that has occurred on several occasions since June 2017, selection of case studies in the NT and the main focus group meeting (FGM) outcomes. A key message from FGMs is that despite frequent exposure to natural hazards and emergency situations, there are minimal resources, with little or no involvement of locals in decision-making, in each of the selected remote community. However, the locals are interested to participate in EM discussion and related services. It is intended that lessons learnt from the undertaking of this project will help inform the development of future programs aimed at supporting EM planning and implementation for risk management in remote vulnerable locations.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationDarwin
    PublisherBushfire and Natural Hazards CRC
    Number of pages18
    Publication statusPublished - 2018


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