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Drought Resilience Plan

The Drought Resilience Plan is jointly funded by the Australian Government and the NSW Government under the Future Drought Fund.

Bathurst Regional Council, together with Lithgow City and Oberon Councils are excited to announce they have been successful in applying for up to $450,000 worth of funding to develop and implement a Central West Drought Resilience Plan which will operate across all three Councils.

The project is jointly funded by the Australian Government and the NSW Government under the Future Drought Fund.  The project will include community engagement across all Local Government Areas and the plan will also be informed by feedback from the CSIRO.  The Council group have jointly engaged WSP Australia Pty Ltd to develop the plan and to provide advice to each Council on its implementation.

Minister for Regional NSW Tara Moriarty said the Regional Drought Resilience Program supports regional communities, farmers and industry to prepare for the future.

“It is vital that regional NSW communities have the support to develop community-driven drought plans that work for their local areas,” Ms Moriarty said.

“These plans will help support regional communities when drought hits, and help manage drought impacts across a range of sectors to improve the way natural resources are managed in each region.”

Mayors Mark Kellam, Maree Statham and Robert Taylor made a joint statement saying, “We will be engaging all communities across the footprint of this plan to ensure the lessons of the millennial drought, and other recent drought experiences can be considered and learnings from those experiences included in our Central West Drought Resilience Plan.”

“Drought does not respect Local Government boundaries,” they said, “and we believe working as a cohesive team will respect the similarity and difference of experience.  It will also provide a cost-effective solution to address this pressing climate change issue without the need for duplication of effort.”

All Councils see the development of the Central West Drought Resilience Plan as a positive outcome for the area and a chance to highlight not only the synergies between our communities, but the fact our Councils often are called to assist each other and have developed highly effective working relationships, particularly during recent events.

“All Councils are asking their communities to actively engage with this process so their ideas and thoughts on drought preparation, management and recovery are captured and implemented in consistent ways across the Central West area,” the Mayors said.

Drought Resilience Workshops

Thank you to the community and stakeholders who participated in the recent consultation conducted throughout October. We appreciate the feedback and insights provided. Bathurst, Lithgow and Oberon Councils are now in the process of shortlisting the actions recommended and developed by the community, before they are finalised and included in the final Regional Drought Resilience Plan. The CSIRO will then review the plan before implementation in 2024.