Adaptation is preparing for more extreme heat in the built environment and its impacts on people

Increased heat is the most direct consequence of climate change and heatwaves are the cause of more deaths than any other natural hazard. The Grampians Region will experience increasingly frequent, lengthy, and intense heatwaves. They will also drive disruptions to agriculture, industry, outdoor work, energy and transport across the Region, as well as to ecosystems and biodiversity.


Adaptation plans and actions already underway

Lead agency


Public Health and Wellbeing Plan 2019-2023

Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)


Municipal health and wellbeing plans

Local governments across the Region


Municipal emergency management plans

Local governments across the Region


Grampians Regional Emergency Management Plan

Regional Emergency Management Planning Committee (REMPC)

State Emergency Management Plan

Emergency Management Victoria (EMV)


Cool It

Central Victorian Greenhouse Alliance


Heat Health Plan (2020), heat health advice and communications and local heat planning

DHHS and local governments


Urban tree canopy projects

Local governments


Municiple renewable energy targets and power purchase agreements

Local governments 


Strategic use of shade for outdoor work areas Eg. Horsham Livestock Exchange


Leading opportunities

  • Embed heatwave planning into municipal health and wellbeing and emergency management plans.
  • Mitigation strategies to reduce household energy consumption are also good adaptation strategies.
  • Using green financing options to encourage uptake of energy efficiency and climate adaptation measures.
  • Increased urban tree canopies, river green links, water sensitive urban design and refuges from the heat and cold weather for vulnerable people.
  • Community resilience strategies that emphasise looking out for our neighbours can increase the social capital of those communities.
  • Working with developers to improve the quality of new housing stock above minimum standards.
  • Retrofitting existing buildings for thermal efficiency.
  • Extensive roadside land can be planted out for tree canopy cover and heat reduction.
  • Research can identify affordable and accessible ways to retrofit established buildings for greater thermal performance and energy efficiency.

Main barriers

  • Many of the heat management challenges are with existing buildings and infrastructure, especially heritage buildings.
  • Where heat causes declines in productivity, it affects the Region’s economy, which in turn affects local capacity to invest in climate adaptations.
  • Criteria for inclusion on Vulnerable Persons Registers are restrictive.
  • High demand for electricity on hot days can impact the reliability of the transmission network.
  • Tree planting programs may not select drought-tolerant species or allow for ongoing maintenance costs.
  • Economic settings and planning rules often work against community solutions, which makes heat harder and more expensive for communities to manage.

David Turley from the City of Ballarat

Phil King from Hindmarsh Shire Council

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We acknowledge the First Nations Peoples of the land and waters that we live, care and work upon within the Grampians Region. We respect the continuous culture that has been embedded into history for thousands of years. We pay our respects to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.