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Somerset Council Welcomes Release of Brisbane River Floodplain Study

SOMERSET Regional Council has welcomed the Queensland Government’s release of the Strategic Floodplain Management Plan (SFMP) which is a long-term coordinated strategic document to manage risk in the Brisbane River Floodplain.

Somerset Regional Council Chief Executive Officer, Jason Bradshaw, said the plan was an outcome of the Queensland Floods Commission of Inquiry following the devastating 2011 floods.

“Somerset Council has worked extensively with State Government, other key stakeholders and local governments in the catchment area, over several years to deliver on a long-term strategy to manage the impact of future floods and enhance community safety and resilience in the Brisbane River floodplain,” Mr Bradshaw said.

“The strategic plan will be used by Council to inform amendments to Council’s Planning Scheme and long-term infrastructure requirements.”

“It considers current and future flood risks, disaster management, mitigation, infrastructure, community resilience, building guidelines, land use planning and landscape management.

“Somerset Regional Council is already working towards delivering the actions as outlined in the plan for the betterment of the region and its constituents.”

Prior to the release of the floodplain management plan overview, the State Government released The Brisbane River Catchment Flood Study (Flood Study) in May 2017 that took four years to complete. It was the largest flood study ever undertaken in Australia.

The Flood Study was used to develop the Brisbane River Strategic Floodplain Management Plan (Strategic Plan), which provides the framework for a consistent approach to managing flood risk across the floodplain, now and into the future.

Technical evidence gathered since 2017 to inform the Strategic Plan has provided a common set of data for the region that is informing consistent approaches to the ongoing work governments are delivering to manage flood risk across the region.

Somerset Regional Council Mayor, Cr Graeme Lehmann, said significant work has been done by Council since 2011 to make our communities safer and more resilient in terms of disaster preparedness.

“Council has implemented a range of initiatives including employment of three additional full-time staff to manage and assist in times of disaster through better planning and preparation,” Cr Lehmann said.

“Council also provides access to a free Early Warning Network service to all Somerset residents, and has installed a flood early warning system including a network of cameras and gauges with emergency sirens at Lowood and Fernvale, and completion of flood studies for major townships and much more.”