Our climate resilience assessment methodology focuses on the vulnerability of the asset to climate change, particularly its ability to endure severe weather impacts and operate without disruption. As outlined in the figure below, the methodology defines key resilience criteria, with a particular focus on location and design, structure, operation and maintenance, utilities and services, and stakeholders.
In FY15 we set a FY17 climate resilience target for the assets in our North Queensland retail portfolio. The aim was to improve the score from 5.9 to 5.5 by implementing a range of actions and initiatives aimed at improving reliability and resilience to extreme weather events, better emergency preparedness and greater comfort and amenity for building occupants.
Examples of initiatives and actions included:
- Fastening roofing systems and roof mounted equipment to improve resilience to cyclonic wind,
- Upgrading air conditioning and electrical equipment to provide greater reliability and performance during days of extreme heat,
- Replacing ageing roofing materials and specifying new roofing systems in developments to utilise ‘cool roof’ technologies to reduce urban heat island effect and heat loads on plant and equipment,
- Improving the design of stormwater drainage infrastructure to be more resilient to the effects of intense flooding, and
- Implementing new business continuity plans and emergency procedures for assets in regions vulnerable to cyclones.
After further experience with extreme weather events and comparison against other portfolio assets, the vulnerability of some built elements was revised due to a lower perceived vulnerability than originally scored or where a particular vulnerability has been removed. For example, our shopping centre in Cairns is no longer deemed a cyclone evacuation centre so the resulting vulnerability has been removed.
On reassessment, the North Queensland retail portfolio achieved an average score of 5.4 from the initial score of 5.9 which is 0.1 ahead of target. This still places these assets in the upper range of moderate vulnerability, due to their proximity to cyclone affected regions, but some assets that were in the high range of vulnerability have had their vulnerabilities measurably reduced due to the implementation of resilience initiatives.