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Implementing priority flood risk reduction actions

Major flood events in Victoria cause significant damage to private and public property and infrastructure, lost productivity, and considerable stress and anxiety. Preparing, planning for, and responding to a flood event is key to reducing damage and protecting livelihood.

Implementing priority flood risk reduction actions will enable communities, businesses and government to manage flood risk minimising the consequences to life, property, local economies and community wellbeing.

The department also has obligations in the Emergency Management Manual of Victoria to support VICSES in flood response (primarily through FloodZoom).

Regional floodplain management strategies

The Building flood resilience in Victoria initiative represents the next tranche of the Victorian Government's investment in priority flood mitigation actions and delivers on Water for Victoria (2016) Action 10.12.

These priorities have been set through collaborating with communities to develop Regional Floodplain Management Strategies. Victoria has 9 regional floodplain management strategies in place. Together, they give a statewide picture of Victoria’s priorities for flood mitigation investment for the next 4 years.

Flood Intelligence Platform - FloodZoom

Investment in FloodZoom (Flood Intelligence Platform) as the authoritative source of flood behaviour data and intelligence for emergency agencies has continued.

This initiative has also invested in taking Victoria’s FloodZoom platform to the next level – current flood maps and potential property impact data, river levels in real time, the latest advice and warnings from the Bureau of Meteorology, all in one place and at the fingertips of flood analysts.

The Platform continues to meet user needs, primarily the VICSES when responding to and monitoring flood events. The platform greatly improves responder agencies’ capacity to predict the potential consequence of a flood at particular locations. This was shown during the October 2022 flood when compared to information accessibility during 2010-2011.

Further improvements to FloodZoom continue to enable flood analysts to provide timely advice to incident management teams.

FloodZoom is a web-based application for collating data and sharing flood intelligence products between agencies during an incident. FloodZoom brings together:

  • flood related behaviour information, such as recent and historic modelled flood extents, depths, flood levels, study reports and observed flood impacts
  • real time and historical rain and streamflow records
  • flood forecasts, flood mapping and property data such as floor heights.

Environmental contribution 5 (EC5)

Program title 2020–21 expenditure ($'000) 2021–22
expenditure ($'000)
2022–23 expenditure ($'000)
Building flood resilience in Victoria 6,630 6,6626,706

Highest-priority flood mitigation actions

The first 3 years of implementation of the $26.7 million building flood resilience in Victoria initiative has seen dissemination of the next tranche of investment in Victoria’s highest priority flood mitigation actions.

Communities are well positioned to take advantage of this investment thanks to work already completed by local councils, floodplain management agencies and their communities developing Victoria’s 9 regional floodplain management strategies.

The regional floodplain management strategies, completed in 2018 by the 9 regional catchment management authorities and their delivery partners provide a statewide picture of our communities’ highest priorities for this next tranche of funding.

Risk resilience grants program

In keeping with previous years, the Risk and Resilience Grants Program (RRGP – formerly the Natural Disaster Resilience Grants Scheme) is the primary vehicle for the dissemination of government funding to flood mitigation projects.

The revised and updated National Partnership Agreement on disaster risk reduction endorsed in March 2020 has focused the RRGP on achieving risk reduction outcomes, a strong theme of Victoria’s approach to flood mitigation.

At the time of reporting the program has invested in two rounds of the Risk and Resilience Grants Program (RRGP), 2020–21 and 2021–22. $2.897 million of Victorian Government funding (EC5) has been distributed to locally led eligible flood mitigation projects, with co-contributions from applicants and the federal government.

Round three of the RRGP was open for applications between June 2023 and August 2023. Outcomes will be available late 2023.

51 projects funded through the Building flood resilience in Victoria initiative

The first 3 years of the 4-year program has seen the 51 projects funded through the initiative and get underway.

These 51 projects represent the implementation of local and regional priorities for increasing community resilience to flooding, including

  • 19 flood study and flood intelligence collection projects
  • 7 flood mitigation infrastructure design projects
  • 17 flood warning system actions
  • 8 planning scheme amendments.

Victorian Floodplain Management Strategy implementation

Implementing the ten-year Victorian Floodplain Management Strategy continued throughout the first 3 years of the initiative. All 56 strategy actions now embedded in practice or fully implemented, seeing the strategy fully implemented some 4 years ahead of schedule.

The strategy will continue to inform consistent decisions and actions for management of flood-related issues over its 10 year term from 2016.

Page last updated: 15/11/23