Monday, 05 November 2018 12:22

Heat strategy commended at Resilience Awards

Resilient Australia Awards 2018 Logo Resilient Australia Awards 2018 Logo

Western Sydney’s urban heat mitigation program, Turn Down the Heat, received highly commended at the NSW Australian Resilience Awards in October.

Heat has an impact on multiple community themes such as population health, animal welfare, energy, infrastructure, transport, emergency response and planning. 

Turn Down the Heat is a five-year (2018-23) strategy and action plan to co-ordinate a cross disciplinary response to the challenges of urban heat in Western Sydney.  

While the need to address urban heat is recognised, implementation of action plans is often fragmented. Turn Down the Heat is designed to complement existing policies and strategies and facilitate a broader, coordinated response to the challenges of urban heat.

WSROC President Cr Barry Calvert said “Turn Down the Heat started when a group of council officers recognised the impact heat was having on Western Sydney’s health, infrastructure, economy and environment.

“It quickly became apparent that this critical issue was being considered by a range of organisations, but a coordinated approach was needed to ensure the best outcomes.

“Turn Down the Heat provides this coordination by allowing participants to share information, prioritise key areas for action, support and replicate successful programs, and identify gaps where they exist,” said Cr Calvert.

Key actions identified under Turn Down the Heat include mitigation measures such as:

  • Better urban planning including the use of cool materials,
  • Cooling with greenspace and water, and
  • Improving the resilience of major infrastructure

The Strategy also outlines the need to improve our response to extreme heat by:

  • improving community awareness and preparedness for heat events; and
  • updating our emergency response frameworks.

“Turn Down the Heat would not be possible without the input, support and enthusiasm of our partner organisations who come from fields as diverse as health, education, planning, engineering, government and sustainability,” said Cr Calvert.

The Turn Down the Heat Strategy is due to be formally launched later in the year following a process of collaborative development with over 180 stakeholders from across 50 organisations.

Turn Down the Heat is guided by a steering committee made up of WSROC, Greater Sydney Commission, NSW Health, Western Sydney University, Government Architect’s Office, Office of Environment and Heritage, Resilient Sydney and Greater Western Sydney councils.

Last modified on Tuesday, 06 November 2018 16:35