The Minderoo Foundation Wildfire and Disaster Resilience Program will identify and define a set of practical, short-term interventions that can be implemented ahead of the commencement of the next Australian bushfire season in August 2020.
The interventions will be based on global best practice, the recent WDRP roundtables with participation from key Australian stakeholders, and previous public hearing recommendations. These interventions are evidence-based pilot projects, putting needs of the community and end user first in reducing risk and harm and building resilience.
Empowering small business and community – A workshop will be held with communities within disaster impacted regions, to focus on helping local businesses take an innovative approach to business recovery, relevant to their community. The workshop will aim to foster growth, professional experience, intellectual property, and employment opportunities for participants.
Understanding societal disaster resilience – This novel study aims to better understand population-level behaviours during times of crisis. This will provide essential input into understanding systems, strengths, and key vulnerabilities which can be used as intervention levers to measurably lift resilience in individuals and communities.
Resilient Landscapes and Wildlife:
Building evidence for indigenous fuel load management – A pilot project to create a mentoring and on-the-ground program which will test and validate the use of cultural burning practices in differing geographic and landscape types. This will provide further fuel load management in at-risk regions prior to next bushfire season.
Enhancing recovery of wildlife – Conduct studies to determine best options for returning koalas to their natural habitat post-disaster. This includes assessing habitat nutritional value, outcomes for injured wildlife and development of new techniques for ongoing survey of koala population health.
Enhanced Disaster Response:
Enhancing situational awareness – There have been a number of new aerial and situational awareness technological developments in recent years. This study will support the assessment of these new capabilities in an Australian context to understand their ability to truly enhance the operational capability of emergency services during natural disasters.
Enhanced Disaster Prediction:
Collective resilience – The Resilient Earth Data Collective is a pilot concept which aims to be a single entry point to publicly available resilience datasets from governments, NGOs and industry globally. It will align to and link with existing government initiatives. This will enable a systematic approach to collecting and using resilience data, which can inform best practice resilience on a global scale.
“This innovative and collaborative approach will help to accelerate the pace and scale of action which is so critical for building back stronger after these types of disasters.”
“What is important about the Minderoo Foundation’s Wildlife and Disaster Resilience Program is that is has aligned government, community and industry with conservation and leading scientists to ensure we can bounce back even stronger after such events.”
“Working with Minderoo Foundation, WWF can prototype and validate new techniques to speed up the recovery of threatened species, and their habitats, and help future proof Australia’s unique ecosystem.”
“The Insurance Council of Australia are proud to be partnering with Minderoo Foundation to drive a new resilience model for Australia. Together we can provide innovative solutions to build stronger, more resilient communities and infrastructure.”
“Whether it’s reducing the impact of fires through new preparedness measures, improving the effectiveness of emergency response or ensuring communities are truly resilient to any emergency, there is so much more we can all do together.”