Record flooding across northern New South Wales will force Lismore shire council to rework its new flood management strategy even before it is implemented, and other regions will probably follow suit as insurers tally the cost of worsening climate extremes.
Lismore mayor Steve Krieg, just 10 weeks into the role, says his town is struggling to cope with hundreds of emergency calls. He says the council will need to revisit plans to lift the areaâ€™s levee banks after the Wilsons River peaked on Monday afternoon at 14.4 metres, topping the previous records by two metres.
â€œI think weâ€™re going to have to redo a lot of things,â€ Krieg said. â€œThere were a lot of decisions made in the past that probably werenâ€™t in the best interest of the city as a whole.
â€œIn the coming weeks and months, we will be definitely implementing a much stronger and a much sturdier floodplain management strategy,â€ he said, adding that the priority for the moment was â€œall about saving livesâ€.
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