• Emergency Management

Emergency Management

What is Emergency Management?

A Disaster or Emergency can be defined as a serious disruption to the functioning of a community or a society caused by widespread human, material, economic or environmental losses which exceeds the ability of the affected community or society to cope using its own resources.
Emergency Management involves the organisation and management of resources and responsibilities to deal with all aspects of emergencies across prevention, preparedness, response and recovery.

This site provides an overview of the Emergency Management arrangements at the National level, State level and the Local level. It also provides information on the Natural Disaster Resilience Program grants available for projects that aim to build safer and more sustainable communities that are better able to withstand the effects of natural disasters. 

Australia's Approach to Emergency Management 

The Commonwealth government is committed to developing national emergency management capabilities, and also to assist States and Territories in responding to disasters and emergency incidents within their jurisdiction.

COAG 2002 Review of Natural Disasters

In 2002, the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) commissioned a high level review of Australia's approach to natural disaster relief, recovery and mitigation against disasters. The review recognised that current emergency management arrangements could be improved through a fundamental shift in focus towards cost-effective, evidence-based disaster mitigation. This represents a historic move beyond disaster response and reaction, towards anticipation and mitigation.

The Review has established 12 Reform Commitments that aim to establish a unified national approach to natural disasters under which governments, households, businesses, volunteer organisations, insurers and others with a part to play operate in concert to;

  • create safer, more sustainable communities and regions in social, economic and environmental terms,
  • reduce risks, damage and losses from natural disasters, 
  • find the right balance among mitigation, preparedness, response, relief and recovery activities, and
  • recognise the investment and savings opportunities provided by mitigation.

The COAG 2002 Natural Disasters in Australia: Reforming Mitigation, Relief and Recovery Arrangements Reform Commitments is available by clicking here.

Emergency Management Australia (EMA)

 At the Australian Government level, EMA is the agency responsible for emergency management policy, and to provide a strategic coordination role. For example, EMA facilitate the implementation of Council of Australian Governments (COAG) review recommendations impacting on the emergency management sector, and monitors emerging threats such as those that may be brought about by greater urban development, increased sophistication of technology, terrorism and climate change that all contribute to the changing nature of risks posed to communities.

For further information visit the Emergency Management Australia website by clicking here.

Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience

The Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience (AIDR) delivers a range of educational programs based on a set of core principles:

  • Resilience is a complex topic and much of the success of an education program will be the way in which it helps to change the way we think and behave as individuals, communities and organisations.
  • Our response agencies (e.g. fire, flood, health and humanitarian) have well-developed educational materials specific for the situations in which they provide their services.
  • A growing number of disaster situations are beyond what individuals and organisations have experienced or trained for and there is an increasing need to up-skill our workforce to allow them to deliver the best possible responses in complex, ambiguous and dangerous environments.

For further information on Education and Training programs visit the AIDR website by clicking here.