Managing the impacts of population growth, terrorism threats and natural disasters are among the issues raised in the City of Sydney’s first-ever resilience strategy.
The document was launched this week alongside an app to help residents prepare for emergencies.
The resilience strategy, released on Tuesday by Lord Mayor Clover Moore, outlines a plan for how the city will cope with major challenges including extreme weather events, cyber and terror attacks, housing affordability, inequality and congestion.
Extreme weather, infrastructure failure and water crisis were identified as the top “acute shocks” for Sydney, while health services demand, housing affordability and social cohesion were identified as the top “chronic stresses.”
Five flagship actions were developed as part of the resilience strategy including:
- plans for every council in Sydney to adopt a resilience strategy
- the development of a scoring system to reduce the effects of extreme heat
- a 5 per cent improvement in community cohesion in five years
- the adoption of the Get Prepared app by 100,000 Sydneysiders and
- the implementation of resilience plans by 100 organisations.
The report was developed after the City of Sydney won a place in the 100 Resilient Cities initiative in June and informed by collaboration across metropolitan Sydney with 33 council areas, 100 business and government organisations and 1,000 residents.
“A rapid increase in density has put pressure on schools and early education and on open space, essential services and other infrastructure. Affordable housing is a critical issue and congestion is getting worse,” Clr Moore said.
“All these issues are challenges in themselves and they aren’t unique to Sydney – the effects of urbanisation, globalisation and climate change are seen right around the world. They aren’t constrained by boundaries or different levels of governance,” she said.
“It’s why this strategy, developed with input from across Sydney, is such a breakthrough. Resilient Sydney recognises no one organisation can solve our problems and instead looks at how we can work together, across boundaries to protect and champion the needs and interests of our communities.”
Chief resilience officer for Sydney Beck Dawson said the success of the plan depended on community input.
“Our ability to bounce back is linked to the strength of connections between neighbours, businesses, councils and government entities. As more people and organisations adopt resilience planning, our safety and quality of life will improve,” she said.
As part of the resilience plan, the Australian Red Cross and Insurance Australia Group developed the Get Prepared app, a resource to help residents generate their own personal emergency plan in just minutes.
It’s hoped the app will be adopted by 100,000 Sydneysiders over the next two years as part of the strategy.
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