National News

Australian virtual flood conference leading the way

Australia’s leading network of flood professionals is hosting its National Conference digitally this week and bringing together delegates from all over the country and overseas to discuss how to make our communities safer and more resilient to floods.

While it was originally intended to hold the Conference in Toowoomba, FMA has transitioned the event online, providing a safe avenue for professionals to still access the development so critical to the flood industry.

The Conference “A Flood Resilient Australia: transforming vision into action” ran from Wednesday 20th to Thursday 21st of May, and combines interactive live-stream presentations, pre-recorded presentations and virtual social events.

FMA President Ian Dinham said FMA Conferences are the highlight of the calendar year for this industry and have been held annually for the past 60 years. FMA knew that it was imperative to find a way to connect our Members especially during this challenging time.

“The response to the online transition has been overwhelming with the possibility of over 800 people logging in from a myriad of regions, doubling the projected attendance of an in-person event. This new format has allowed professionals from small regional councils or those overseas to attend when they may not have been able to in-person”, Mr Dinham said.

“While it is disappointing that we will be unable to travel to the Toowoomba Region this year, we welcome the opportunity to showcase the area through our online event including a virtual welcome from Mayor Paul Antonio.

Toowoomba Region Mayor Paul Antonio said Toowoomba Regional Council could pinpoint where and how it had turned its vision for a safer, stronger, more flood resilient Region into reality through major flood mitigation projects and planning controls for development based on leading practice flood mapping.

FMA President Ian Dinham said the work that Toowoomba Council has undertaken in flood risk management is exceptional and is an outstanding example of excellence in the industry. FMA is therefore thrilled to announce that Toowoomba will host the 2022 FMA National Conference.

“If it weren’t for the support and ingenuity of our incredible presenters, sponsors and supporters, this transition wouldn’t be possible. We are incredibly grateful for their hard work and their drive to support the professional development of their colleagues”, Mr Dinham said.

Over 160 councils, catchment management authorities, government agencies, businesses and professionals involved in all aspects of flood risk management.