- Written by Adam Gatt Penrith City Council (02) 4732 7777 (02) 4732 7958 email@example.com https://www.penrithcity.nsw.gov.au 601 High St Penrith NSW 2750 Australia
What is Resilience?
Penrith and Western Sydney as a whole is a growth area of the future with pressure for increased housing, green space, transport, infrastructure and services to cater for a growing population. Western Sydney is also impacted by a changing climate with the community facing multiple shocks in 2019/20 including extreme heat, bushfires, poor air quality from smoke, storms, floods and a pandemic.
Urban resilience can be defined as the capacity of individuals, communities, institutions, businesses and systems within a city to survive, adapt and thrive in the face of chronic stresses and acute shocks they experience.
Shocks are sudden events or short-term disruptions that threaten or disrupt our day to day life and include things like heatwaves, bushfires, floods, disease outbreaks, infrastructure and network failure and cyber-attacks. Stresses are systemic disruptions that grow over time and impact a city on a day-to-day or regular basis. Examples include increasing demand for health services, inadequate public transport options, inequity and insufficient employment opportunities, and a lack of social cohesion. Shocks and stresses are not experienced in isolation and when they interact, they often amplify the impacts on a city and its communities.
Council and the community must be prepared to face these challenges together, to adapt together and to respond and recover together to form a stronger more resilient community.
Council has established a Resilience Committee to contribute to environmental, social and economic outcomes. The Committee advise Council on opportunities to improve the resilience of our City and how to integrate resilience within the activities and decision-making of Council.
The Committee has an adopted Terms of Reference and is made up of Councillors, professionals and community members that meet at least four times per year.
In 2015, Sydney became a part of the 100 Resilient Cities Network established by the Rockefeller Foundation to assist cities to become more resilient. The Resilient Sydney Program, hosted by the City of Sydney, was formed as a collaboration with all Metropolitan Sydney Councils to build the capacity of Metropolitan Sydney to respond to adapt more readily to shocks and stresses.
Council has a nominated Resilience Ambassador to support the Resilient Sydney Program, and our General Manager sits on the Resilient Sydney Steering Committee.
The Resilient Sydney Strategy: A Strategy for City Resilience 2018 was developed in collaboration with State Government, Local Councils within the Metropolitan Sydney area, business and the community. The Resilient Sydney Strategy “sets the direction we must take to strengthen our ability to survive, adapt and thrive in the face of global uncertainty and local shocks and stresses.”
To learn more about the Resilient Sydney Program or to view the Resilient Sydney Strategy visit Resilient Sydney.
Penrith Resilience Action Plan
A localised Penrith Resilience Action Plan is being developed in alignment with the Resilient Sydney Strategy 2018 and will be built into Council’s Community Strategic Plan by June 2021. The Action Plan will be set over a timeframe of 10 years, with a review undertaken every five years and will prioritise short, medium and longer-term actions.
Council is developing this Action Plan in collaboration with stakeholders and the community to:
- Identify and understand the shocks and stresses for the Penrith area
- Identify risks and vulnerabilities for Council and the community
- Build knowledge and capacity for resilience
- Ensure we are addressing present and future challenges, identifying opportunities and undertaking action to enhance the resilience of Penrith.
The Action Plan, once developed, will assist in building our awareness and preparedness, and enhance the capability of Council and the Penrith community to adapt and be more resilient to risks, shocks and stresses.
You can contribute to the development of the Action Plan by responding to the community survey and through the planned community forum. For more information go to Council's Have Your Say.