Cross-PS response to
The Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency is to coordinate a program across the Australian Public Service requiring agencies to consider the impact of climate change on their risk management strategies.
climate change risks
The move follows a year-long investigation into climate change by the Productivity Commission, specifically focusing on regulatory and policy barriers to climate change adaptation.
The Commission’s report recommended that governments at all levels should embed consideration of climate change in their risk management practices and ensure sufficient flexibility in regulatory and policy settings to allow households, businesses and communities to manage the risks of climate change.
“A range of policy reforms would help households, businesses and governments deal with current climatevariability and extreme weather events,” the report says.
It also gave examples of reforms the Commission recommended, which included reducing perverse incentives in tax and regulatory arrangements that impeded the mobility of labour and capital; increasing the quality and availability of natural hazard mapping; and clarifying the roles, responsibilities and legal liability of local governments while improving their capacity to manage climate risks.
It also recommended reviewing emergency management arrangements to better prepare for natural disasters and limit losses and reducing tax and regulatory distortions in insurance markets.
Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, Greg Combet said it was important Australia prepared for the impacts of climate change to protect communities, businesses and economy.
“We must also ensure Australia is resilient in the face of the changes in the climate which scientists advise are unavoidable,” Mr Combet said.
“By considering our changing climate when making decisions, we will be in a better position to minimise the risks we face and to take advantage of the opportunities.”
He agreed with the Productivity Commission on the need to consider climate change in the risk management of Government agencies.
“The Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency will coordinate this effort across the Commonwealth,” Mr Combet said.
The Productivity Commission’s full report can be accessed at this PS News link.
Edition 353, 19 March 2013