NSW councils have been invited to apply for a share of $605,000 in third round funding as part of the Increasing Resilience to Climate Change grants to help their communities plan, coordinate and adapt to the changing environment.

Department of Planning, Industry and Environment Executive Director Climate Change and Sustainability, Mick O’Flynn, said grants of between $30,000 and $120,000 are available for individuals and groups of councils to increase their resilience and respond to risks in their region.

Mr O’Flynn said the initiative has already seen 23 councils access grants of more than $2,255,000 to deliver on ground action to improve the State’s resilience to the impacts of climate change. This funding is from $2.8 million allocated by the NSW Government to enable councils to tackle climate change.

“In previous rounds of council grants we saw projects such as Ku-ring-gai Council’s 3D Simtable bushfire simulation model, which uses computer technology to help vulnerable communities understand how fire can move through their local landscape, allowing them to better plan the action they take in response to bushfires,” Mr O’Flynn said.

“Wagga Wagga City Council installed a smart watering system to increase the resilience of playing surfaces in sporting facilities and save water by trialling smart irrigation technology. If successful, this scalable system will be rolled out to council sports grounds and parks.

“We’re encouraging collaboration with one or more councils, regional organisations, private sector or government agencies, community groups and other organisations to act to address identified climate risks and have their projects up and running by the beginning of 2021.”

This initiative is designed to incorporate regional consideration of climate change impacts in decision making and to implement climate change adaptation actions beyond business as usual projects and programs as well as enhance adaptive capacity.

The IRCC council grants initiative is a partnership between Local Government NSW and the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment to address identified climate change risks and vulnerabilities facing NSW councils.

Councillor Linda Scott, President of Local Government NSW, said LGNSW is proud to partner with the NSW Government in offering these grants. 

“I encourage councils to apply for funding as local governments are on the frontline of managing services and assets affected by climate change and assisting communities to build resilience to climate impacts.”

Applications for the third round of funding for NSW local councils close on 15 October 2020. 

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