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Northern Rivers Resilience Initiative

Supporting the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales

The National Emergency Management Agency is supporting the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales to drive long term resilience by delivering priority projects that mitigate the impact of disasters on communities and economies in the region, and ensure that communities are in a better position to recover from future disasters.

Understanding the vulnerability of the Northern Rivers region to the impacts of severe weather, and following the devastation of the February-March 2022 floods, the Government is committed to understanding the risk factors and broader influences .

That is why $11.2 million has been committed to the Northern Rivers Resilience Initiative, being undertaken by the National Emergency Management Agency and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). Its aim is to understand climate, catchment, and hydrological drivers within the Northern Rivers region and how these drivers impact flooding.

The Northern Rivers Resilience Initiative will assess different scenarios, and consider the broader influences of land use practice and infrastructure to identify and prioritise community supported options for flood mitigation projects. It will also provide detailed mapping, analysing and modelling within the region, to inform future planning and investment.

From July to November 2022 the CSIRO team undertook engagement with stakeholders across the Northern Rivers region.

CSIRO worked closely with Alluvium Consulting (an environmental consultancy), their local staff, and our local Recovery Support Officers to conduct a rapid review and assessment of flood mitigation options.

Meetings and workshops with local councils and community groups discussed existing flood mitigation project proposals, and collected community views. On 30 November 2022, CSIRO submitted two reports related to this work and these are currently being considered by NEMA and will inform how the Australian

Government’s commitment of $150 million in 2022-23 is invested across priority projects to ensure the region is more resilient to future disasters.

You can find out more about this initiative through the the Northern Rivers Resilience Initiative Factsheet.

Find out more about the work being undertaken by CSIRO: Floods - CSIRO  


Advisory Panel

The Northern Rivers Resilience Initiative Advisory Panel provides input into decisions associated facilitates information sharing between the project and key stakeholders, to ensure the best possible outcomes for the initiative. The Advisory Panel’s initial meeting was held on 26 September 2022.

Advisory Panel meeting communiques: